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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, May 31, 2006

'These guys are not greedy'

 •  Not all see Kahuku home-purchase plan as 'win-win'

By Rick Daysog
Advertiser Staff Writer

When Continental Pacific LLC faced community opposition on the Big Island over plans to develop beachfront residential lots several years ago, the Florida company won over many critics by providing more than three miles of beach access for the public.

Now, Continental is taking its accommodating approach to the Kahuku community on Oahu's North Shore where it plans to develop 18 beachfront lots.

"Developers and businesses have a profit incentive but these guys are not greedy," said Gordon Inouye, chief executive officer of Hawaii Rainbows Business Development LLC, which is purchasing about 550 acres on the Big Island from Continental to be used for agricultural uses.

"They don't just take the money and run."

On Monday, Continental unveiled its plans for 240 acres of agricultural lands it is purchasing from the Estate of James Campbell.

In exchange for the rights to build 18 beachfront homes, Continental will offer 70 families now living in plantation-era homes on the 240-acre Kahuku Village parcel the chance to purchase their homes for an average of $75,000 fee simple. Continental Pacific will also transfer the fee interest to the nine-hole Kahuku golf course to the community, provide oceanfront access for local residents and build a three-acre beach park.

Continental Pacific is a Dela-ware Limited Liability Company with its home office in Santa Rosa Beach, Fla., according to the company's Web site. The owners are J. Barron Strother, Jere A. Henderson, Jeremy A. Henderson and F. Reynolds Henderson.

Founded in 2000, Continental Pacific is not a home builder or development firm. The company purchases large tracts of agricultural or residential lands, subdivides the land, builds infrastructure and sells the undeveloped lots to builders or individual homeowners, who construct the homes themselves.

"The buyers of Continental Pacific's properties are investors, farmers, retirees, other individuals, and companies they are value investors," the company said on its Web site.

Continental currently owns nearly 10,000 acres of agricultural land along the Hamakua Coast on the Big Island, which it acquired from C. Brewer & Co. in 2002.

The company purchased some 1,300 acres in Kahuku from the Campbell Estate's Aina Nui Inc. and in March the company bought 170 acres, also in Kahuku, from Aina Nui.

The current 240-acre Kahuku Village deal with the Campbell Estate is pending.

Hawaii Rainbows' Inouye said yesterday that Continental has been very supportive of his company's efforts to create agricultural subdivisions on the Big Island.

Hawaiian Rainbows is acquiring 500 acres of land from Continental and subdividing the land into 20-acre agricultural lots that will be subleased or sold to local farmers. Crops include sweet potato, ginger, rambutan, lychee and other fruits, Inouye said.

Inouye said Hawaiian Rainbows nearly defaulted on the terms of its agreement but Continental was willing to work through the Big Island company's problems.

"They're business people but they are fair and all we wanted is a fair shake," said Inouye. "I've never had any problems dealing with them."

Reach Rick Daysog at rdaysog@honoluluadvertiser.com.