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UH expected to debut new line of sports logo wear

By Ferd Lewis

LAST UPDATED: 5:44 p.m. HST, Apr 16, 2014

The University of Hawaii athletic department said it will debut new lines of its sports logo wear July 1, pending final approval Thursday of its agreements to launch "H-Zone" stores at Ward Centre and the Stan Sheriff Center.

The five-member Board of Regents Committee on Planning and Facilities on Wednesday recommended approval of the agreements when the entire Board meets Thursday.

Under athletic department control, the outlets would be known as the "H-Zone" replacing the Rainbowtique, which has been operated by UH's Campus Services.

Athletic director Ben Jay projects a $500,000 profit in the department's first year of operation.

Campus Services would also close the Waikiki Beach Marriott operation when that lease expires June 30. "H-Zone" operations are to be expanded at the Les Murakami Stadium and Rainbow Wahine Softball Stadium.

UH does not control merchandise sales at Aloha Stadium, where the rights are held by Centerplate.

According to terms of the pending three-year agreement, UH would operate a 1,465 square-foot store at Ward Centre compared with the 665 square-foot Rainbowtique and will pay $5.14 per square foot the first year compared to the $6.77 the Rainbowtique was charged this year. In addition, the rent will be waived for May and June as UH readies the new store for the July 1 opening.

Athletics said it will not take on any of the former Rainbowtique merchandise inventory and will begin with its own new and expanded lines.

As part of the deal, the Howard Hughes Corp., owner of Ward Centre, will become a platinum level ($100,000 and above) UH athletic sponsor.

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