Business Briefs

Posted: Thursday, May 11, 2000

Soldotna Safety Days set for Saturday

State Farm Insurance, with the help of Fred Meyer, will host "Soldotna Safety Days" from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday in the parking lot of Fred Meyer, at the "B" entrance.

The event is an opportunity for members of the community to get together with law enforcement personnel and say thanks, say organizers.

There will be an appreciation awards ceremony at 3 p.m.

Represented at "Soldotna Safety Days" will be Fish and Wildlife Protection, Central Emergency Services, the Soldotna Police Department and Alaska State Troopers. Several city officials have been invited to participate.

Pamphlets and videotapes focusing on safety information will be available. Emergency response equipment, including squad cars, the CES ladder truck and an ambulance will be on display. There will be a raffle, as well as several giveaways.

The event has been scheduled to coincide with National Law Enforcement Month.

Spokane company buys local store

Columbia Paint & Coatings of Spokane, Wash., has bought Columbia Paint & Decorating in Soldotna.

The business, established in 1975 by Roger and Valorie Rosin, formerly operated as a Columbia dealership. Now, it will be a company-owned distribution center. Russ Rosin, Roger's son, will continue as store manager, and Valorie Rosin will continue as an employee. Columbia has appointed Mike Seynei as Soldotna district manager. Seynei has been with the company since 1989.

"We plan to continue the high level of service and expertise customers expect," said Steve Gordon, Columbia executive vice president.

Tourism workers invited to Seward

Tourism workers will learn about Seward attractions and services during the second annual Employee "Fam" Day sponsored May 25 by the Public Relations Committee of the Seward Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Bureau.

The events run from 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. and from 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Hotel Edgewater in Seward. Everyone who works with the public is welcome to attend. There will be presentations by Kenai Fjords National Park and Chugach National Forest staff, and a presentation on the history of Seward. The chamber invites local businesses to participate with information about their activities and services. There will be refreshments and door prizes. Each session ends with a tour of the Alaska SeaLife Center.

Businesses attend women's show

Several central Kenai Peninsula businesses will have booths at the seventh annual Alaska Women's Show May 19 and 20 at the Sullivan Arena in Anchorage. Those include Krog's Kamps and Webster's Outdoor Adventures of Soldotna, Lilly Ann's Jewelry of Nikiski, Bowcraft of Soldotna and Mannatech Inc. of Sterling.

Business, health, fashion, beauty and arts and crafts are the main themes of the show. Aurora Productions Inc., the producer, expects more than 200 booths and 30 seminars on topics from culinary arts to cosmetic surgery and investing. There will be appearances by 1996 Olympic gold medal gymnast Amanda Borden. There will be cooking demonstrations by local chefs and a mini gym where parents can drop off children for supervised tumbling and gymnastics.

ACS reports first-quarter loss

Alaska Communications Systems Group Inc. reported a first quarter loss of $3.1 million, or 10 cents per share.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization were $28.4 million, up 6.5 percent from the first quarter last year. Operating revenues were $78.3 million, up 10.1 percent.

"Our first-quarter 2000 result exceeded our expectations," said Chuck Robinson, chairman and chief executive. "Despite expenses converting our cellular system to fully digital, our ACS brand unification campaign and service improvements throughout our network, we achieved our overall earnings objectives."

The company's investments will improve its services and productivity, he said.

"We look for continued strong growth in revenues and an improving cost structure as we move forward," he said.

Computer workshop offered

PCI Skills Resource Center holds a hands-on workshop Monday through May 18 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. to teach Windows 98 and Office 97 computer skills. To preregister, call 283-4099.

CPGH adds sanctuary

Central Peninsula General Hospital has added a sanctuary in remodeled space next to the nurses' station. Mara Metcalf, RN, donated angel wall quits, Joann Jaillet donated a table lamp, and the Rife family donated an altar cloth and Bible. Alaska Correctional Industries workers at Spring Creek Correctional Center in Seward made the furniture.

Gallery to unveil painting

Norman Lowell Gallery unveils an 8-by-14-foot painting during a ceremony May 20 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. The gallery is on Norman Lowell Drive at Mile 160.9 Sterling Highway.

Phillips offers new technology

Phillips Petroleum Co. is now licensing its proprietary MaxCat Coke Reduction Technology to other companies.

This additive technology allows refiners to reduce coke buildup on catalysts, thus increasing octane barrels, run lengths and unit throughput. It already is in use at all Phillips U.S. refineries and at a third-party domestic refinery.

"With changes in the clean fuels marketplace, namely the phase-out of MTBE and the introduction of deep sulfur removal regulations, the octane component of gasoline has taken a significant hit," said B.Z. Parker, executive vice president of Phillips downstream operations.

Phillips' profits rise

Phillips Petroleum Co. reported first-quarter net income of $250 million, up from $70 million during the first quarter last year. Total revenues were $4.8 billion, up from $2.5 billion a year ago. Rising oil prices and increased oil production contributed to the improved results, said Jim Mulva, chief executive. Phillips' oil production rose 5 percent and natural gas production fell 5 percent compared with the first quarter last year.

An incident at the K-Resin styrene-butadiene copolymer facility at Phillips' Houston Chemical Complex decreased first quarter net income by $21 million. Mulva said high feedstock costs plus rising fuel and utility costs contributed to low margins in the company's downstream operations.

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