The Maui 10
Who's the county's most powerful player?
January 17, 2008
CARLYLE GROUP WANTS TO BUY SOCIETY
We make fun of Hawaiian Telcom a lot in this space—shoving them down into the cellar of the list for a couple years now because of their chronic inability to answer customer complaints in a reasonable amount of time—but seriously, their owner Carlyle Group is scary-powerful and getting more so by the minute. In fact, according to a recent Washington Post story published by the Honolulu Advertiser on Jan. 6, the $75 billion private equity firm now wants to start buying some of our nation's bridges, tunnels, highways, airports and even sewer systems. Calling such acquisitions "long-term partnerships," Carlyle Group officials insist they could run society's infrastructure more efficiently and safely than public municipalities, which paid for the stuff in the first place. Needless to say, not everyone is convinced. "Isn't there a concern that the drive for profit might outweigh public safety, security issues or even whether public employees could get fired?" James Bellessa, a D.A. Davidson & Co. analyst asked the Post. "It raises issues of national security and safety as well as whether Carlyle could run it better."
|2||2||Alexander & Baldwin|
|3||3||Maui Electric Co.|
|8||7||Maui Land & Pineapple Co.|
|10||9||Wailuku Water Co.|
EVEN HARRY CAN'T HELP RESORTS NOW
Using some variation of the euphemism "softer sales" three times and the now-clichéd phrase "tipping point" another three times in a Jan. 9 Maui News story, notoriously pro-development reporter Harry Eagar tried to put the best face on people just not buying hideously expensive resort condos and timeshares in Hawai`i like they used to. And that's bad news for developers like Dowling Co. and Maui Land & Pineapple Co., which are staking big money on such projects. Guess Harry's just going to have to work a little harder. MTW
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