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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, January 6, 2006

BUSINESS BRIEFS
Coffee Bean & wireless, too

Advertiser Staff and News Services

The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf announced yesterday that it is offering free wireless broadband Internet service, or WiFi, at stores in Manoa, Kailua and Hawai'i Kai. Skywave Broadband LLC implements and manages the service.

The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf has stores at the Manoa Marketplace, Foodland Kailua and in the Foodland at the Koko Marina Shopping Center.


RETAILERS FACE UNCERTAIN 2006

NEW YORK Retailers faced an uncertain 2006 after December's modest sales gains showed that the holiday shopping season, while overall respectable, was disappointing for some of the nation's most prominent merchants. As expected, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. was one of the stragglers, falling short of Wall Street's expectations and warning about its fourth-quarter profits.

Winning retailers included Target Corp., Costco Wholesale Corp., upscale stores such as Nordstrom Inc., and teen retailers like Abercrombie & Fitch Co. Gap Inc., Sears Holdings Corp. and Kohl's Corp. were among the disappointments.


GATES PICKS UP BERKSHIRE SHARES

OMAHA, Neb. Microsoft Corp. Chairman Bill Gates is bolstering his stake in Berkshire Hathaway Inc., spending more than $35 million in recent weeks for more shares of his friend Warren Buffett's investment company.

Gates, a Berkshire Hathaway director and the world's wealthiest person, paid between $88,275 and $89,100 for each of the shares. That pushed his stake in the Omaha-based holding company to 4,050 shares, worth $363.7 million based on yesterday's closing share price.

Gates spent about $35.4 million to acquire the shares, according to documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

He joined the company's board last May, replacing Buffett's late wife.