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back to article Larry Ellison buys airline

Oracle boss Larry Ellison's passion for investing in Hawaii has seen him acquire local airline Island Air. Ellison last year acquired most of Hawaii's sixth-largest island, Lanai. Today he owns 98 per cent of the 141 square mile (365km2) lump of land. Should the billionaire database guru desire to visit Lanai by air, he can now …

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Coat

Simple logic

I would have done the same. (too late now).

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"Throw in the fact that at 1500m Lanai's runway may be too short for Ellison's corporate jets"

Can his MiG 29 handle a 1500m runway? I honestly don't know ... and can't be arsed to look it up. I'll bust a gut laughing if he's wasted all that money, just to get the obsolete piece of shit onto US soil.

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Re: "Throw in the fact that at 1500m Lanai's runway may be too short for Ellison's corporate jets"

iirc the mig29 can land on dirty roads so he probably could get it on and off the island using the pineapple roads. I think the runway requirement is 600m? He could only use it for island hopping even with external tanks it would be unlikely to reach the mainland (should be a couple of hundred miles short) :) I guess he could buy a refueling tanker?

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600m (was: Re: "Throw in the fact that at 1500m Lanai's runway may be too short for Ellison's ..."

::heh:: I was typ(o)eing in meters, and reading/thinking in feet ... it's a hazard of being a pond-skipper as a teen-30something in the '70s & 80's & 90s :-)

Mea culpa.

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Re: 600m (was: "Throw in the fact that at 1500m Lanai's runway may be too short for Ellison's ..."

ah, so just a bit short. Theres a road just behind the stables he could probably use just fine. Given the way he works he would likely just extend the runway. Not sure I would want to fly migs that close to pearl, especially not with all the nocturnal non civil air traffic around these parts.

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These days most of the islands are limited at many times of years by the number of inbound seats, their price and the routing. Perhaps Ellison is thinking more along the lines of boosting tourism by increasing seats or making it cheaper \ more convenient to fly in. Sure is a hell of a lot nicer than the ferry over which has a distinct hint of vomit comet!

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@Rampant Spaniel

If you think that pseudo-greenster LarrySan is looking to promote tourism, you don't know LarrySan. He's probably looking to keep as many people as possible out of his personal fiefdom ...

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Boffin

Re: @Rampant Spaniel

Agreed in full. Given how he had pulled the plug on OpenSolaris and made what's left of it close sourced.

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Devil

Yeah, I'm sure he's buying an airline so he can get himself a seat on it to his own island. Even if he split the cabin into 3 - economy class, business class and Larry class - he would still need to stick to the plane's schedule liek the hoi polloi.

No, he'll still have his own private aircraft to go to his island,.

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Noooo....

The airline seats are not for him... They are for the hired hands.

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Erm yeah I do have a pretty good idea what he is up to and I wasn't suggesting he was making it easier for him to fly there (although if you know of a private jet that can put down on 500m strip that has a 2400 mile range do share). The airline isn't for his personal use. He owns the land, he has a vested interest in the prosperity of the hotels and other businesses there. Buying the airline and providing capital to increase the service makes sense as he sees the benefit from the tourism increasing the land value and the rent revenue. He may be an arse but he isn't grossly incompetant. I don't like the guy, but I understand what he is up to. He is making it easier for tourists to visit, better schedules, more seats etc so he can make more money. He's investing in the chain, whats the mba bs for it? vertical integration?

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@jake

That was actually what we all thought initially, but he borrowed a lot to buy the island, he stands to lose a hell of a lot of money if the tourism business collapses. As much as I dislike him, he has invested a lot so far and is investing more. Yes he is basing his toy boat here but his deeds so far seem to suggest that whilst he wants a seriously large estate, he wants people living there to do well (I presume so he can make more money). I'm not saying I trust him, but so far it's been pretty decent.

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You're all missing the point

A techno-plutocrat now has a private island. Be afraid, be very afraid.

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Re: You're all missing the point

Afraid of Larry? ROTFLMAO!

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Coat

Re: You're all missing the point

Did anyone check the island for dormant, hollowed out volcanos?

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Re: You're all missing the point

Er, you do understand how all the islands in Hawaii came in to being, right?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: You're all missing the point

Is that really a lake in the volcanic crater - or is it a retractable platform?

Does he like cats?

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Coat

Isn't it obvious?

Since he's based in the Pacific, his first acts as owner will be a new route to connect with Java, and a name change to Sun Airways (maybe Solaris for short?). Guess it's possible though he's only doing this to hang with the cool "I break records" gazillionairs (and have airlines and space stuff) like Branson and Musk. Let's just hope his airline will have a better security record than Oracle....

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Re: Isn't it obvious?

Sol-air-is surely ...

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FAIL

ICAO: SBRJ in Brazil whose longest runway is 1323m handles A319's and B737's so a 1500m runway wouldn't be a problem for a business jet :P

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Alert

Has he bought a brewery yet?

ISTR a quote that said something like in order to be considered a country you needed your own beer and your own airline.

If we see Oracle Beer, independance for Larristan[1] cannot be far off.

[1] Ellisonland? Oraclania? Jav........ah......that one's taken.....

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Re: Has he bought a brewery yet?

I own an airstrip & a brewery ... does that make me a country?

As a side-note, I didn't purchase them, I built them ... I don't own an island. Yet.

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Beer country @TeeCee

"ISTR a quote that said something like in order to be considered a country you needed your own beer and your own airline."

I've seen this quote attributed to Frank Zappa, which runs something like:

"You can't be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline - it helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer." --Frank Zappa

Colin

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Black Helicopters

Collapse of the US

Larry know that the US is on the brink of an economic collapse and so is getting the hell out. Smart Guy.

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Re: Collapse of the US

er.. to Hawaii ?

you do know it's not some sort of weird coincidence that they use US dollars there don't you ?

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1500m Runway - More Than Enough

1500m is a decent length for a runway, and is more than capable of handling most business jets, and most small airliners (although they may be range restricted).

Lanai has a runway length of 1524m. A Gulfstream 5 (one of the larger business jets) requires 1570m for take-off when fully loaded, giving it a range of 5,800 miles. Chop off a few hundred miles of range, or leave behind a suitcase or two, and you'll easily get airborne from that runway.

You'll get an A320/737 off that runway as well, but you'll need to head to one of the larger islands to refuel before continuing to the mainland.

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Re: 1500m Runway - More Than Enough

Funny you should mention the Gulfstream V, since that is Larry's plane! The aircraft lives at San Jose International (SJC), which is just under 2100nm from Lanai. Given the G-V's max range is 5800nm, it's clear that you can operate LNY-SJC with no more than 75% of the fuel that the G-V can hold, which makes it's take-off weight something like 80% of MTOW, which makes the runway length acceptable for the hop across to California.

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