The Maui 10
Who's the county's most powerful player?
May 03, 2007
RANK PREVIOUS COMPANY
Alexander & Baldwin
Maui Land & Pineapple Co.
Maui Electric Co.
Wailuku Water Co.
NOT SO SUPER FARES
Hawai`i Superferry Inc. hasn't even taken aboard a single passenger
or SUV yet, and the company is already announcing fare cuts for
children under 12, seniors 62 and older as well as "retired personnel
of the United States Armed Services, including the Coast Guard," said
an Apr. 23 company press release. Retired Coast Guard? That's like,
what, five guys? Anyway, claiming "customer demand" is responsible for
the price cuts, HSF CEO John Garibaldi is now saying those people
mentioned above will only have to pay $41 off-peak and $51 peak for
tickets, though those prices don't include a fuel surcharge. "As we
continue preparations for our launch in July," Garibaldi said, "the
excitement has been building and we've received many inquiries about
the availability of discounted fares." That's it? A few complaints roll
in that Hawai`i Superferry's prices are outrageous, and they fold up,
just like that? You'd think all that Maui Land & Pine money the
company's taken would have stiffened their backbones.
THE BOTTOM LINE
And A&B slides into the top spot this week by doing things the
old fashioned way: announcing that they're raising shareholder
dividends. Starting June 7, according to the Apr. 27 Honolulu Star-Bulletin,
A&B will pay shareholders a second-quarter dividend of 29 cents,
rather than just 25 cents. Alexander & Baldwin first started hiking
dividends in 2006—after an eight year lapse—when wholly owned
subsidiary Matson Navigation began pulling into Chinese ports. China
may be a giant dictatorship that views civil liberties (and Tibetans)
with about the same affection you or I show gnats that buzz about our
heads—a practice that really hasn't moderated following more than three
decades of Western investment and trade. But like most big
corporations, A&B doesn't let things like "human rights" get in the
way of the bottom line.MTW
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