Revenue growth remains constant and opportunities arise despite challenges to tourism and the military buildups
By Meghan Hickey
Once again, this year Guam Business Magazine conducted its distinctive annual poll of the top companies doing business in Micronesia, including Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia and the Marshall Islands. Companies with gross revenues totaling more than $1 million are invited to be a part of the list and provide company information to share an overview of the health of the economy in Micronesia.
This year, 36 companies participated. Answers provided for the accompanying anonymous economic confidence survey describe the health of the company’s bottom line in comparison to one year ago, expectation for the bottom line in the coming year, company’s staffing trends in the past 12 months, expectation for staffing trends in the coming year, status of the company’s economic expectations for 2017 and economic opportunities foreseen in the coming year.
Companies on the list provided revenues for both this year and last, showing that out of the 36 companies, 63.9% experienced growth in revenues over the previous year, slightly higher than 62.5% in last year’s survey.
With similar numbers experiencing revenue growth overall, optimism is surprisingly high for future growth, with all but 8.33% respondents to the anonymous survey reporting their company’s bottom line being the same (25%) or better (66.66%) when compared to one year ago, and 100% of respondents expecting their business bottom line to stay the same (28%) or become better (72%) one year from now.
High spirits of growth bring similar confidence in staffing opportunities, with only 12% of businesses reporting having to decrease staffing numbers in the past 12 months — many seeing an increase in staff by up to 24%. Similarly, almost half (48%) of businesses expect to increase the number of staff in the next year by 5% to 15%.
Of those that did not fulfill economic expectations for the company in 2017 (24%), top barriers included decline in Japanese tourism numbers and other changes of market mix, some impact due to North Korea threats; lower economic growth than expected, coupled with increase in competition; and certain markets remaining flat due to the slowdown in the construction industry, despite expectation of expansion. A majority (68%) of companies see the economy providing specific opportunities in 2018, including
- opportunities due to the military buildup and private building construction;
- tourism growth and expansion;
- expanded lubricants business and market;
- liquid petroleum gas business line development in the region;
- coconut product sales and markets doing well nationally and internationally;
- new business from the federal government and increased requirements for support at the military bases due to increasing threat levels from North Korea and the coming buildup related relocation of more than 4,000 Marines from Okinawa;
- expansion of services on island — local cloud computing and related internet connectivity servicing;
- continued expansion of broadband communications throughout Guam enterprises, government and consumers; and
- private sector investment.
Read on to see responses from each company on its biggest accomplishment in the past year, economic assessments by our sponsors — Joe M. Arnett of Deloitte & Touche and David J. John of ASC Trust Corp. — and the list of the top revenue-generating companies in the region ranked by gross revenues. Guam Business looks forward to continuing to welcome more companies to the list next year, and to continue to grow and incorporate deeper analyses of the economic landscape each year.
What was your biggest corporate accomplishment in the past year?
Editor’s note: Each of the companies participating in this year’s Top Companies survey was asked about its biggest accomplishments during the past year. The following are responses of the head executives.
“We have a longstanding commitment to the West Pacific Region in helping consumers, businesses and the community grow. In 2016, we opened our new Gualo Rai branch in Saipan. Bank of Hawaii Foundation also donated $100,000 in partnership with the University of Guam to create the Bank of Hawaii Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, which serves as a gathering place for students to cultivate new business ideas. Additionally, our West Pacific Region employees often teach financial education sessions to students throughout the region through programs such as Junior Achievement, Teach Children to Save Day and Get Smart About Credit Day.”
Peter S. Ho
Chairman, president and CEO
Bank of Hawaii
“This year, the completion of our ATISA submarine fiber-optic cable system allowed us to launch our full range of fixed and mobile services throughout the Marianas, including the widest 4G LTE network, the first triple-digit online speeds up to 100 Mbps and TiVo, the state of the art television entertainment system.”
President and CEO
“Completion and (grand) opening of the American Samoa (branch) office-warehouse facilities, increasing its space three-fold.”
“Our greatest accomplishment was the successful completion of our a one-year ‘bridging’ BOS Contract in June of 2016 and award of a second ‘bridging’ contract, which began July 1, 2016, as we await the final resolution of a competitor’s dispute. We originally were awarded the follow-on BOSC for Joint Region Marianas in September 2014. Unfortunately, a competitor protested that awards and we (and Naval Facilities Engineering Command) are still embroiled in dispute-related activities three years later. We remain optimistic that we will be the ultimate awardee.”
President and CEO
DZSP 21 LLC
“The completion of Saipan Comfort Homes and Grand opening of Great Harvest Bakery.”
Chairman and CEO
Triple J Enterprises Inc.
“Expanding the range of benefits that we provide our employees like company-sponsored group life and health insurance at no-cost for our employees; by taking care of our employees we ensure that they are able to concentrate on taking care of our customers.”
President and CEO
“In 2016, our team was the successful bidder for the 2016 LIHTC Qualified Allocation Plan for 66 units at Summer Town Estates Phase 3 in Dededo. Core Tech International was awarded as the 2016 Contractor of the Year by the Guam Contractors Association.”
Core Tech International Corp.
“2016 was a landmark year for PIC [Guam] as we were able to achieve new records in the key metrics that we use to measure customer satisfaction.”
Pacific Islands Club Guam
“Atkins Kroll Inc. and Atkins Kroll Saipan Inc. were each awarded the TMC Overall Marketing Award for achieving the number one share in each respective market and for achieving their 2016 revised annual sales plan. This is the 12th consecutive year of receiving this award.”
Atkins Kroll Inc.
“SPPC’s single biggest accomplishment during the past year was the success of the SPPC team in leading the fundraising efforts for the American Cancer Society Relay for Life. While we like to believe our business operations are a significant service to the community, we do see those as more easily replaced than the charitable efforts of our employees.”
Senior vice president and general manager
South Pacific Petroleum Corp.
“Hilton Guam Resort & Spa is proud of the renovation and reopening of Caffe Cino in January 2016.”
Hilton Guam Resort & Spa
“Activation of PDS’ Next Generation Network based on PDS’ new Fiber Optic Core and acquisition of new corporate headquarters
President and COO
Pacific Data Systems Inc.
“Additional investment in Marshall Islands Service Co.”
President and CEO
Bank of Marshall Islands
“Focusing on Bank of Guam’s customer-centric philosophy, we solidified service excellence throughout our branches, ATMs, telephone and online banking while strengthening our communications arm on traditional and social media channels.”
President, CEO and chairwoman of the board
Bank of Guam
“Developed an ongoing relationship with Black Construction, improving our construction and construction services capabilities.”
CEO and principal broker
Advance Management Inc.
“Our biggest accomplishment is the full renovation of the restaurant. Since we open in 1998, our biggest renovation and revitalization took place June 2016, the renovation cost [came to] almost $900,000 including furniture, fixtures and signage. Guam became one of the newest TGIF designs in the Asia pacific and Australia. From big memorabilia with big red and white to a now new and contemporary New York skyline made from baseball bats.”
Guam business director and corporate secretary
Watami USA Guam, which does business as T.G.I. Friday’s Guam
“Black Construction Corp. is truly blessed on the awards of recent projects. i.e. Guam International Airport Authority Terminal Building structural upgrade and concourse isolation construction, Route 3 widening (From Route 20 to Chalan Kareta), P-1705 Wharf refueling capability at Naval Support Facility in Diego Garcia and P-715 Live-Fire Training Range (combined total of $248 million).”
Senior vice president and general manager
Black Construction Corp.
“We won the 2017 Construction Management Association of America Project Achievement Award Puerto Rico Dump Closure/Eloy S. Inos Peace Park, under $50 million environmental construction.”
“Our biggest accomplishment over the last year was celebrating our milestone of 55 years with Guam as a healthy and thriving financial institution. We continue to enhance and expand not just our products and services, but our service delivery. Our members remain at the forefront of everything we do and will continue to have affordable access to an array of financial products and services to suit their needs.”
Coast360 Federal Credit Union
“NAVFACMAR awards were extended for another year: 1) IDIQ for Programming and Planning A-E Services; 2) IDIQ for Construction Management Services Multiple Award Contract in Guam and the Pacific.”
President and principal engineer
“We are most proud of our team’s ability to safely and reliably supply fuel to GPA during planned and un-planned base load outages, despite significant demand fluctuations.”
Mobil Oil Guam Inc., Mobil Oil Micronesia Inc. and Mobil Oil Mariana Islands Inc.
“Some of Calvo Enterprises Inc. accomplishments last year are: 1) improvement of Two Lovers Point; 2) construction of a multi-purpose building at Two Lovers Point; 3) renovation of a two-story concrete building in Harmon, where a self-storage facility has been opened; 4) construction of a warehouse building in Adelup.”
President and chairman of the board
Calvo Enterprises Inc.
“On Aug. 4, 2016, First Hawaiian launched its initial public offering on the
NASDAQ Stock Exchange (NASDAQ: FHB), and with a market cap valuation
of $3.2 billion, it became the largest publicly traded company based in Hawaii.”
Chairman and CEO
First Hawaiian Bank
“Our current initiative to bring automation to our warehouse operations should streamline our inventory system from receipt to storage; and ultimately, delivery of products to our
customers . . . is our company’s single biggest accomplishment during the past year.”
President and chairwoman
Jones & Guerrero Co. Inc.
“In 2016, Pacific Rim successfully completed all remaining work on the Dusit Thani Guam Resort project, and transitioned from undertaking one large project to completing multiple projects. It was during this time that we completed two projects on Saipan, were successful in hard bidding several government works projects, were selected as one of the Phase 1 companies for the SB MACC project with NAVFAC, expanded to our own office on Guam and started the process of obtaining a license on Hawaii at the request of one of our clients; 2016 was a big transition year for Pacific Rim.”
Pacific Rim Group of Companies
“Smithbridge has made significant investment into mine safety and successfully met the MSHA requirements as a Registered Mine Operator with the U.S. Department of Labor Mine Safety and Health Administration.”
Smithbridge Guam Inc.
“Introduced fiber to the neighborhood, with internet speeds up to 50 Mbps in select neighborhoods and currently expanding throughout Guam. Expanded the number of 4G LTE sites (LTE covering 95% of the island’s population). Signed an agreement with a consortium of seven telecommunications companies to develop a state of the art trans-Pacific underwater cable system.”
President and CEO
“Identifying and hiring a number of high quality staff members leading to enhanced customer experience.”
CEO, American territories
ANZ Guam Inc.
“Pacific Islands Club Saipan continues to grow in both revenue and product. We are currently constructing three new waterslides on the south side of the property and renovating bathrooms in two wings of the hotel. Despite the decommissioned rooms from renovations, revenue is still above budget, thanks to our strong sales team and F&B outlets.”
Pacific Islands Club Saipan
“The launch of a new vision, mission and strategic plan entitled “Voyaging Together 2025.” In addition a new strategy management framework based on the Balanced Scorecard Institute was adopted, and the establishment of a dedicated Strategy Execution Team. Together these elements seek to lower costs, increase revenue diversity and enhance the long term commercial viability of the Vital Group.”
Federated States of Micronesia Petroleum Corp.
“Through the consistent high performance of our staff, our company seamlessly managed transition of top level management in 2016, while maintaining industry leading customer service and market position.”
Country managing director
“We’ve had another solid year with individual brand growth over the prior year, and [we] continued to diversify our business experience. We currently have new business development for 2018 — it’s a major expansion program that we are quite excited about. An announcement will be officially released in 2018.”
“Imperial Pacific International is steadfast with its commitment and pursuit in building a strong and sustainable CNMI economy. Over the past two years, contributions made by Imperial Pacific into the local economy led the CNMI’s unprecedented rebirth following decades long of slump. Our world-class corporate social responsibility program also reflects our deep commitment to the people and the community that Imperial Pacific proudly calls home.”
Imperial Pacific International (CNMI) LLC