ACS loses $25 million in 2000

Alaska Communications Systems reported a net loss of $25.2 million for 2000, compared to a combined operations loss of almost $18.8 million in 1999. The company also reported a fourth quarter net loss of nearly $8.5 million, compared to a $14.8 million loss for the same period in 1999.

Figures for 1999 are based on combining the data for operations ACS acquired in May 1999.

For the year ACS listed revenue totaling nearly $313 million, up from $299.9 million. Fourth quarter revenue totaled $79.2 million, down from $79.3 million in 1999.

Movers & Shakers March 4, 2001

Gov. Tony Knowles has appointed Ken Freeman as his special assistant for business and gas pipeline development. Freeman previously served as executive director of the Resource Development Council for Alaska Inc. and formerly worked as staff member for the Alaska Legislature. One of Freeman’s key responsibilities will be to track issues regarding development of a gas pipeline.

Bulletin Board March 4, 2001

In gear

Calendar March 4, 2001


The Anchorage Chamber of Commerce is planning a municipal election candidates forum for noon March 5 at the 4th Avenue Theater. Anchorage Assembly and Anchorage School Board candidates and incumbents will debate city and school district issues. For additional information, call 907-272-2401 or visit (

KeyBank economist sees small chance of recession; slow growth more likely

The U.S. economy probably won’t slip into a recession despite recent slowdowns, according to an economic consultant for KeyBank Alaska.

"We put the chances of a recession at one in four, but it will feel like a recession," said Jeff Thredgold, who publishes a quarterly economic newsletter for KeyBank Alaska and is president of Thredgold Economic Associates of Salt Lake City.

Thredgold expects the U.S. economy will post a first quarter growth rate of 1 percent, contrary to two consecutive quarters of negative growth required for a recession, he said.

Grocer seeks arbitration

Operators of six now closed Alaska Marketplace stores have filed for arbitration in Seattle against Safeway Inc., the former owner of the stores.

Seattle-based Associated Grocers Inc. and Northwest Retail Ventures LLC filed a demand for arbitration Feb. 8 with the American Arbitration Association, according to Robert Hoyt, Northwest Retail Ventures chairman.

"Arbitration is something we filed because we think there’s some things that need to be explained," he said.

This week in Alaska Business History

Editor’s note: "This Week in Alaska Business History" revisits events that shaped our past.

"Those who cannot

remember the past are

condemned to repeat it."

-- George Santayana, 1863-1952

20 years ago this week

Anchorage Times

March 6, 1981

Point MacKenzie land lottery gets go-ahead

Times staff and The Associated Press

An Anchorage Superior Court judge cleared the way for a lottery of 15,000 acres of farm land at Point MacKenzie, less than 24 hours before the first name was to be drawn.

Special Olympics forecast to bring millions to city's economy

Alaska business -- and Alaskans’ hearts -- could feel a boost from the 2001 Special Olympics World Winter Games, the largest sporting event ever held in Alaska.

The March 4-11 event, expected to bring a direct infusion of $20.6 million in new cash to the Anchorage economy, could pay future dividends.

Crews begin foundation work on Kenai gas-to-liquids pilot plant

KENAI -- BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. has received the remaining permits it needed to begin construction of a pilot plant in Nikiski to test technology for turning natural gas into synthetic crude oil.

"We started bringing in craft labor yesterday," Ken Konrad, senior vice president for BP said during a meeting Feb. 20 of the Alaska Support Industry Alliance in Kenai.

Legislature considers insurance pool for state's air carriers

Soaring insurance costs for aviation businesses in Alaska may prompt the Legislature to use state money to create insurance liability coverage for in-state air carriers.

Alaska air carriers suffered as much as 80 percent increases to their premiums over last year, when many saw as much as 30 percent increases from 1999. Now, they are seeking help from state lawmakers.

Engineers urge senators to think big in transportation projects

Sitting behind a stack of 47 spiral- bound volumes representing previous studies of the possibilities of building a Knik Arm bridge, state senators heard from experts on Feb. 23 about their ideas for easing future transportation needs statewide.

"Projects like the Knik Arm bridge can be designed and built by local firms," said Dennis Nottingham, president of Peratrovich Nottingham and Drage Inc.

March-Issue-1 2001

This Week in Alaska Business History February 25, 2001

Editor’s note: "This Week in Alaska Business History" revisits events that shaped our past.

"Those who cannot

remember the past are

condemned to repeat it."

-- George Santayana, 1863-1952

20 years ago this week

Anchorage Times

Feb. 26, 1981

Finances force Alaska Hospital to lay off 30

By Maureen Blewett

Times Writer

Aleut's Adak gamble could pay off big for shareholders, region

The Aleut Corp. is doing fine, according to company officials. The Aleutians-area Native regional corporation is profitable -- not wildly so, but steady -- and has been for years.

Its commercial office buildings in Anchorage are full of tenants and making money, according to president Vince Tutiakoff Sr. A $6 million-plus investment portfolio turned in a record performance last year, though this year represents a challenge.

Tesoro's 2000 earnings set a company record

SAN ANTONIO -- Tesoro Petroleum Corp. had record earnings in 2000, the company said Feb. 13.

The Texas-based corporation owns a refinery in Nikiski and a network of service stations across Alaska. In recent years it added refineries in Washington state and Hawaii.

Profits totaled $73 million last year, or $1.75 a share. That was more than double 1999’s $32 million.

Bruce Smith, Tesoro’s chairman, president and chief executive, said improved cash flow allowed the company to pay down debt and improve its balance sheet to pay for future expansion.

Native corporations leap into wireless

A trio of Alaska Native corporations is working together to enter the wireless industry and plans to serve major markets that include Los Angeles and New York.

However, some critics are questioning the outcome of the process that helped the consortium acquire rights to those markets.

Arctic Slope Regional Corp. of Barrow, Doyon Ltd. of Fairbanks and Juneau-based Sealaska Corp. formed Alaska Native Wireless to bid on wireless licenses auctioned by the Federal Communications Commission. The spectrum auction, which began Dec. 12, was completed Jan. 26.

Birchwood's Arctic Sparrow new Antares ultralight distributor

Arctic Sparrow Aircraft Inc. of Birchwood Airport in Chugiak recently announced that it will reassume the North American distributorship for the Antares ultralight aircraft, and will offer the aircraft both as a legal Part 103 air vehicle and as a 51 percent homebuilt kit.

Part 103 refers to Federal Aviation Administration rules governing ultralight aircraft.

"We want to make these aircraft for the U.S. and Canada," said Mike Jacober, president of Arctic Sparrow.

Offices, hotel among investments

Besides its Adak activity and Aleut Enterprise Corp., the Aleut Corp. owns four office buildings in Anchorage, and one in Colorado Springs, Colo., and land in Colorado Springs where future office development is planned.

The corporation owns a trailer court near Valdez and 10 percent of a new hotel in Portland, Ore.

SMI International is a subsidiary engaged in government and commercial facility operations in several states and overseas. SMI is expanding into information technology areas with the acquisition of other firms.

Money-losing subsidiaries have to go

Although timber harvesting, Sealaska Corp.’s core business for 21 years, is doing well even in a down market, things have gone sour on some promising new ventures and the stock market hasn’t cooperated.

For the first time in 17 years, the Southeast Native regional corporation will report a loss. On top of that, Sealaska has lost its key chief executive, Bob Loescher, a long-time top manager and president and chief executive since 1997. Loescher stepped down in January for a variety of reasons. A search for new CEO is under way.


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