Business Profile: Alaska Business Insurance

Name of the company: Alaska Business Insurance

Established: 1983

Location: 1400 W. Benson Blvd., Suite 410, Anchorage

Telephone: 907-272-1825

Web site: www.alaskabusinessinsurance.com

Major focus of services: Alaska Business Insurance provides insurance services, chiefly commercial, but also serving personal lines. The agency has developed a niche business by providing insurance services for the Alaska aviation industry as well as guides and outfitters.

Home Depot to begin construction in Fairbanks

FAIRBANKS -- Home Depot officials expect to start construction later this month on a Fairbanks store.

The start of work on the 130,500-square-foot store would come a month sooner than previously stated. Spokesman Chuck Sifuentes said the store should open next spring.

The Anchorage firm of Koonce, Pfeffer, and Bettis is designing the Fairbanks store, Sifuentes said. A general contractor has been selected, but Sifuentes declined to name the company because contracts have not been signed.

Hats off to Alyeska for improving safety in Prince William Sound

Our group -- the Prince William Sound Regional Citizens’ Advisory Council -- doesn’t hesitate to criticize Alyeska Pipeline Service Co. when the occasion calls for it. Neither do we hesitate when praise is in order, and this is such an occasion.

I am pleased by the improvements Alyeska is making to the crude oil transportation system in Prince William Sound and at the Valdez Marine Terminal, and it is time to say so publicly.

When is a business loan a good idea?

Borrowing money can be appropriate when the purpose is productive and the use of the money will cause liquidation of the loan. Here are a few examples of when it is appropriate to borrow money:

* To purchase a piece of equipment used to make a product that will sell at a profit. Increased profits result from the additional equipment, which repay the loan.

* To purchase inventory that is then resold, either in the raw form or as a finished good. The proceeds from sales then repay the loan.

Icy Straits to add dry kilns as one of seven companies to receive federal grants

timber.jpg JUNEAU -- Icy Straits Lumber Co. in Hoonah hopes dry kilns will take its manufacturing operations over a value-added hurdle.

"Right now we sell wood and tell people to make sure they dry it for a couple of weeks inside, under cover," general manager Wes Tyler said.

With federal support, Icy Straits plans to purchase two small dry kilns that will give its products more of an edge in the marketplace. Each kiln should hold about 15,000 board feet of timber, Tyler said.

Bush may turn back Clinton mining rule change

FAIRBANKS -- The Bush administration is considering overturning a last-minute Clinton administration rule setting new mining regulations, according to the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner.

Opponents to the Clinton-era rule include Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., the second-most powerful Democrat in the Senate’s new majority. Overthrowing the rule could affect more than 100 operators on federal land in Alaska.

It's time Alaska competes on salmon

wealthbuilders.jpg Let’s talk about salmon.

The state of Alaska recently released the latest salmon industry statistics. Summed up, canned salmon sales have increased over the past five years and frozen salmon sales have declined. The drop in the frozen market was not offset by the increase in canned sales.

Gottschalks weeds its Lamonts stores

In addition to the Gottschalks at University Center, company officials are closing four other stores in the Pacific Northwest.

Gottschalks Inc. closed five former Lamonts stores in June including one in Alaska. The Fresno, Calif.-based retailer was due to close the University Center store in Anchorage after deciding earlier not to renew its lease at the mall.

"The lease was up, and we chose to remain operating in the two better centers, Northway (Mall) and of course, Dimond (Center)," Gottschalks President Jim Famalette said in a telephone interview.

Most sockeyes will end up in cans, but Japanese market for reds to rebound

welchlanieLR.jpg Lots of fisheries are going on throughout the Gulf of Alaska and the Bering Sea, but it’s the time of year when salmon takes center stage in Alaska. It all began with the hoopla over kings and reds at Copper River, and other salmon openers are starting across the state and will continue into October.

All five of the Pacific salmon species are economically important for Alaska, but sockeyes are the big money fish.

AC operators report earnings

The North West Co. Fund, operators of Alaska Commercial Co. stores, reported first quarter earnings of $4.9 million, up 17.2 percent from the same period last year.

The company, which operates stores in Alaska and Canada, reported that first quarter revenue rose 7 percent to total $160.7 million.

In Alaska, AC stores listed sales up 0.3 percent for the quarter to total $23.9 million. On a comparable stores’ basis, store sales increased 4.9 percent with comparable food sales increasing 4.1 percent and general merchandise sales climbing 8.1 percent.

This Week in Alaska Business History June 10, 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

June 10, 1981

Firm to stick with royalty oil deal

Anchorage Times

JUNEAU -- Alaska Oil Co. has changed its mind and decided not to try to get out of its contract to buy 75,000 barrels per day of royalty oil from the state, Natural Resources Commissioner Robert LeResche said.

Around the World June 10, 2001

aroundworld.jpgSTATE

Goldbelt retains three on board of directors

JUNEAU -- Three incumbents were re-elected to Goldbelt’s board of directors at the company’s annual meeting in Juneau on Saturday.

Hyder in water business

JUNEAU -- After four years of work, the community of Hyder is going into the bottled-water business.

Construction is complete on a 73,000-square-foot water-bottling plant and production should start this month, said Paul Larkin, Hyder Community Association administrator.

Homer air taxis spar over mail delivery and Bergt's influence

transportation.jpg HOMER -- Two air taxi services in Homer are locked in an escalating battle of words over an application filed by one seeking to upgrade its operating certificate, a move that could take business away from the other.

The owners of Smokey Bay Air Inc. say Homer Air’s application seeking a federal certificate to transport passengers, freight and mail on daily scheduled flights should be denied, in part because former MarkAir owner Neil Bergt is involved.

CIRI sets earnings record despite tourism loss

 ANCHORAGE -- Cook Inlet Region Inc. posted record earnings for the year 2000.

The regional Native corporation’s profits soared to $102 million last year -- nearly double the $57 million reported in 1999. The $102 million profit is the largest ever posted by an Alaska Native regional corporation.

Revenue rose to $380 million from $297 million in 1999.

The big jump in profits was due largely to a windfall from the company’s investments in wireless telecommunications companies, including Voicestream and BellSouth.

Work begins on Arctic Slope Regional Corp. new headquarters

construction.jpg Site work has begun on a new headquarters building for Arctic Slope Regional Corp. in Midtown Anchorage.

The facility will consolidate ASRC’s offices in the 10-story, 200,000-square-foot building, which could be finished by fall 2002.

By late May most of the mobile homes on the site near 36th Avenue and C Street had been relocated, and excavation began in early June, said Leonard Hyde with JL Properties of Anchorage, developer of the project.

With Port MacKenzie closed, Mat-Su borough shifts director's responsibilities

A shift in development priorities by the Matanuska-Susitna Borough administration has affected plans for Port MacKenzie. With the exception of one business, activity at the port has ground to a halt since the Corps of Engineers issued a preliminary report last fall, alleging that the port may not be structurally sound.

Shortly after that, the Federal Highway Administration issued a recommendation that the port close until the Corps and the borough come up with a plan to make appropriate repairs.

Calista Corp. housing authority plan doesn't meet federal law, HUD official says

BETHEL -- The federal Department of Housing and Urban Development has rejected a plan by Calista Corp. to start its own housing authority.

Donna J. Hartley, director of HUD’s grants management division, in a letter to Calista President Matthew Nicolai, explained that the corporation’s housing plan did not comply with the Native American Housing and Self Determination Act, according to The Tundra Drums.

Builders, oil firms expand worker recruitment

The crunch in filling skilled blue collar jobs in Alaska is becoming more serious.

Dick Cattanach, executive director of Associated General Contractors, the construction industry’s trade association, says his industry will have to recruit about 1,000 young Alaskans a year into training to meet the expected needs of contractors over the next four years.

This assumes the industry’s current load of projects and some expected modest growth, but not a large project like a gas pipeline or a missile defense program, Cattanach said.

Halibut bycatch forces early closure to yellowfin sole fishery

Thanks to an abundance of big halibut coming up in the trawl nets, the spring yellowfin sole fishery closed early in the Bering Sea. Most of the halibut bycatch is tossed back dead because of a federally mandated waste policy.

The factory trawlers targeting yellowfin sole in the Bering Sea were ordered to stop fishing April 26, when they’d reached their seasonal halibut bycatch allowance.

In recent years, the fishing boats stayed within halibut bycatch limits and kept on harvesting the small yellowfin that weigh around a pound per fish.

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