This Week in Alaska Business History November 25, 2001

PHOTO/FAA Web site
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

Nov. 25, 1981

Wien Air to change name, shift emphasis to Lower 48

By Deb David

Times Writer

Wien Air Alaska will get four shiny Boeing 767 jets and expand its operation into the Lower 48 after its new owner takes over; it also will lose its name.

Eagle International Corp., owned by Neil Bergt of Anchorage, purchased Alaska’s oldest airline Monday for $50 million from Household Industries Inc. The takeover is subject to approval by the Civil Aeronautics Board.

Wien president James Flood said when he learned Eagle was offering to buy Wien, he tried to buy the airline.

"It was a question of timing," Flood said today. "I was working on the financing and Bergt got his in place at the right time."

Bergt formed the Eagle Corp. two weeks ago to purchase Wien. He said he plans to give the air carrier a new name, "something that is more in keeping with its new identity."

Anchorage Times

Nov. 25, 1981

Group urges look at all-Alaska line

By Mary Pat Murphy

Times Writer

Commonwealth North has recommended reconsideration of an all-Alaska route for a natural gas pipeline, financed through state investment or loan guarantees.

A report released today by the group recommended that the state take the lead in pushing for an alternative plan for transporting North Slope gas if delays continue to plague plans for a route through Canada.

An all-American route for transporting natural gas from the North Slope to Lower 48 markets is "a viable alternative and should be reconsidered," the report stated.

The report said there is an untapped energy supply of 26 trillion cubic feet of natural gas on the North Slope.

A gas pipeline parallel to the route of the oil pipeline could be designed as a high-pressure system that would accommodate both the dry gas and gas liquids.

10 years ago this week

Alaska Journal of Commerce

Nov. 25, 1991

AIDEA expands commercial lending to include buildings, refinancing

By Tim Bradner

Alaska Journal of Commerce

In a significant policy shift, the Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority will now finance acquisition of existing commercial buildings and do refinancings, strengthening a move for the state development corporation into secondary, long-term commercial financing.

Bill Scott, executive director, said AIDEA has done similar lending in the past, but the authority’s board had put that on hold while it studied whether its statutes allowed it to finance only new construction. Alaska banking and development groups, however, said AIDEA has steered away from commercial lending for several years, instead favoring high-profile development projects like the Red Dog Mine road and port.

AIDEA’s board approved the new policy at its last meeting.

Alaska Journal of Commerce

Nov. 25, 1991

REI drops farmed salmon from its Anchorage store

By Bob Tkacz

For the Alaska Journal of Commerce

Complaints by some of its 35,000 Alaska members has caused the Recreational Equipment Inc. outdoor gear and clothes cooperative to remove farmed king salmon from its Anchorage store and consider whether to offer the product in future catalogue sales.

The offending fish was replaced with wild Alaska salmon in REI’s Anchorage store. It remained available in Seattle and other stores around the country.

"We found that, obviously, we had hit a hot button up in Alaska," said REI spokesman Mike Collins.

Responding to the co-op’s Washington state members’ concerns for endangered Columbia River salmon runs, the catalogue offered king salmon fillets (16 oz. for $30) with the note, "No wild salmon are caught to offer this mouth-watering delicacy; farm salmon are specially reared."

Shortly after the catalogue hit Alaska mailboxes in mid-October complaints, instead of orders, began coming back to Seattle.

-- Compiled by Ed Bennett.

11/25/2001 - 8:00pm