Hawaii's Island of Lanai Depends on Wealthy Owner, Oracle's Larry Ellison
HONOLULU (AP) - The people living on a rural Hawaiian island set to be bought by billionaire Oracle Corp. CEO Larry Ellison have a laundry list of what they want him to provide.
Working-class residents on Lanai want stable jobs and affordable housing, among other things. They hope Ellison is willing to sit down, listen to their concerns and be sensitive to the unique culture of Hawaii.
But residents here are largely dependent on whoever owns 98 percent of the island's 141 square miles.
Bill Medeiros oversees Lanai for Maui County. He says Lanai needs an owner with deep pockets willing to bear a financial loss.
That's soon to be Ellison, an adventurous billionaire who needs the island a whole lot less than the people of Lanai need him.
Ellison is the owner of the tennis tournament, BNP Paribas Open, held annually in Indian Wells. Forbes lists him as the third wealthiest man in the U.S. behind Bill Gates and Warren Buffet