The Biz Buzz

Get the most up-to-date news, insights and analysis of Tacoma, Pierce County and South Puget Sound business.

NOTICE: The Biz Buzz has moved.

With the launch of our new website, we've moved The Biz Buzz.
Visit the new section.

Archives: Nov. 2007

Nov.
30th

Roca family expands with two new candy entries

The candymakers at Tacoma’s Brown & Haley are working 24 hours a day these days turing out candy – especially Roca products – for Christmas, as well as items related to Valentine’s Day. Also on the production line are candies bound for the Asian market and Chinese New Year.


New this year are "Chocolate Pillows," which will be available beginning next Thursday only at Brown & Haley outlets in Fife and at the factory store in the Dome District. Company head Pierson Clair calls them "a decadent fudge enrobed in a premium European chocolate." He says the soft confection

Read more »

Nov.
30th

Live music will stay at Tacoma Mall Nordstrom

Reports were out yesterday that Nordstrom was doing away with the live piano playing at its stores.


Not true in Tacoma. Nordstrom spokeswoman Brooke White told me last night that the manager of the store at the Tacoma Mall has decided to keep the live piano playing.


Stores at Bellevue Square and Alderwood Mall Will switch to recorded music, she said.


"We know there’s a nostalgic value to the piano, and some customers love it. But some don’t. They just feel the piano is outdated," spokeswoman Brooke White told The Seattle Times. "It’s a difficult

Read more »

Nov.
30th

Big, big ship visits Tacoma


A very large auto ship is visiting the Port of Tacoma today.


The Wallenius Lines M/V Fidelio arrived last night on its maiden voyage to Tacoma.


Average car ships carry about 3,000 to 4,000 vehicles (or car-equivelent units). This one, however, carries 8,000 vehicles.


Just how big is it?


The ship is 747.4 feet long. That’s more than two football fields.


It weights 71,583 tons and has 13 car decks.

Nov.
29th

Doors closed at computer recycling business

Tacoma resident Ralph Anderson calls to tell us that he either wants his computer back – or else the money he paid to have it repaired.


He told us some trouble he’d been having with a South Tacoma business, PC Salvage, and how he’s been trying to track down the owner.


Earlier today, here’s how the sidewalk looked in front of the business, at 3627 S. 54th St.




I called the three numbers listed on the company’s Web site, and

Read more »

Nov.
29th

Amazon.com launches a Web site to answer questions

Amazon.com today launched Askville.com, a website where users ask and answer questions. The topics can be anything from how to buy an HDTV to the best way to lose weight.



Here’s the lure:
Askville.com users who share their knowledge by answering questions will receive Quest Gold, which, for a limited time and while supplies last, can be redeemed for $100 or $50 Amazon.com Gift Cards.



The quote from the company:
“Finding information or getting good advice is hard enough when you are searching the Internet by yourself,” said Joseph Park, Director of Askville.com.

Read more »

Nov.
29th

Martinac Shipbuilding chairman dies

Joseph S. Martinac Sr., the chairman of Tacoma’s oldest major shipyard, has died.


Martinac led J.M. Martinac Shipbuilding Corp. for nearly 50 years before his death early Wednesday morning.



Joseph S. Martinac Sr. in 1965


Though he was 87, Martinac worked three days a week at the Thea Foss Waterway shipbuilder until two weeks ago when he entered the hospital for an operation to remove non-cancerous cysts on a lung, said his son, Joe Martinac Jr, the shipyard president.


“He never left intensive care. He developed the kinds

Read more »

Nov.
29th

UWT student group’s forum on the liquidity crisis

If you’re wondering about the intricacies of the latest credit and liquidity crisis, there’s an interesting forum scheduled for tomorrow morning.


The Association of Student Accountants at the University of Washington Tacoma is hosting the Contemporary Accounting Forum 2007 from 8:15 to 11:45 a.m. at the Greater Tacoma Convention & Trade Center.


This year’s topic "Transparency and Accountability: the Role of Structured Investments and Off-Balance Sheet Financing in the Global Credit Crisis", highlights the macro-economic, financial and accounting issues related to the use of structured finance securitization instruments and vehicles and the current liquidity crisis.


An

Read more »

Nov.
29th

State banks bettered banks nationwide in 3rd quarter

The FDIC is out with third quarter banking results, and banks in Washington did better than those nationally.


Across the country, FDIC-insured commercial banks and savings institutions reported a net income of $28.7 billion, a decline of $9.4 billion, or 24.7 percent. An increase in loan-loss provision and a decline in noninterest income were primarily responsible.


The 83 institutions in Washington saw a net income, year-to-date, of $615 million, up from $459 million in the third quarter of 2006. Net interest margin was down to 4.48 percent from 4.58 percent in the third quarter of 2006.


The

Read more »