2007 SmallBiz Success Awards
What do an international special events planner, a 91-year-old ukulele manufacturer and an expanding Italian restaurant chain owned by Southeast Asian immigrants have in common? They are all successful small businesses and honorees in the inaugural SB Success Awards.
Starting in early 2006, we asked our readers to tell us about companies, with 100 full-time employees or less, of notable achievement. Success can be measured many ways, including rapid sales growth, longevity, overcoming adversity, a dramatic turnaround or offering a unique service or product.
Hawaii has many outstanding small businesses with exciting stories to tell. Our panel of three judges narrowed down 59 nominations to 10 awardees and 12 honorable mentions. The stories of our top 10 run on the following pages. No matter what your company’s size, there is much to learn from these models of grit, determination, insight and innovation.
Congratulations to the SB Success Award winners. You are a source of inspiration.
ARCHITECTS HAWAII LTD.
HAWAII FOODSERVICE ALLIANCE LLC
KAMAKA HAWAII INC.
LASER EYE CENTER OF HAWAII
|COMPANY||TYPE OF BUSINESS||FAST FACT|
|ALOHA LP GAS INC.||Propane distribution||Company has more propane trucks (three) than employees (two).|
|H.Q. INC.||Fruit and vegetable||Provides products to more than dba ALOHA PRODUCTS wholesaler 400 produce retailers.|
|HASTINGS AND PLEADWELL
A Communication Company
|Public relations firm||Celebrated 10th anniversary in 2006 with 10 acts of service to the community.|
|IRONHORSE DEVELOPMENT CO. LLC||Train tour operator||The Pineapple Express train tour at Wahiawa’s Dole Plantation carried approximately 230,000 passengers last year.|
|MATSUMOTO & CLAPPERTON||Advertising agency||Grew from $790,000 in capitalized billings in 2001 to nearly $6 million in 2006.|
|MINA CORP.||Pharmacy||Increased revenue from $1.9 million in 2000 to $12.9 million in 2005.|
|PACIFIC AQUASCAPES||Pool, spa and rock work||Converted to employee-owned company construction in 2003.|
|PACIFIC SHIPYARDS INTERNATIONAL
|Inactive ship disposal||Has a perfect five-year environmental safety record.|
|RAINBOW DRIVE IN LTD.||Drive-in style restaurant||46-year-old Rainbow Drive In features popular local-style plate lunch favorites and slush floats.|
|SEE/RESCUE CORP.||Survival technology||Has about 20 patents worldwide development on various survival equipment.|
|VALLEY ISLE GYMNASTICS||Gymnastics training center||Trains more than 800 students. Winner of 2006 Hawaii Better Business Bureau Torch Award for Business Ethics.|
|YOUNG SCALE CO. LLC||Retailer of commercial scales||Allows students at nearby St. Patrick School to use equipment for science experiments.|