Business Digest

Staff reports

Posted: Thursday, August 18, 2005

Sears moves into larger space in mall

Juneau's authorized Sears dealer is moving a few doors down into a larger space in the Mendenhall Mall.

The new sales floor is about 1,000 square feet larger than its previous location, and the store will have more warehouse space in the back, owner Bill Gissel said.

Sears was at its former location for four years. The new store is expected to begin operations today and will have a grand opening celebration next month, Gissel said.

The owner said he wanted the store to expand before the Alaska Permanent Fund dividend checks are handed out in October. The larger store will allow Gissel to offer more merchandise, such as laundry and washing machines, refrigerators, Craftsman tools and seasonal lawn equipment.

The expanded warehouse will carry more stock so customers have a better chance of getting their purchases on the same day, Gissel said. Orders typically take up to two weeks.

Chore Busters, an outfit of Juneau-Douglas High School football players, was hired to do a portion of the moving. The money goes to the team's travel expenses in the fall.

Sears has seven employees and is looking to hire more full-time and part-time help.

Discount realtor opens Assist-2-Sell office

Residential Realtor Sean Henderson, formerly with Re/Max of Juneau, has opened a branch office of Assist-2-Sell, a nationwide company that focuses on discount brokering.

Henderson offers a flat fee of $3,995 for homes sold, a fairly new concept in residential real estate. The price includes full service, such as the home's advertising, showing the home to buyers, negotiating agreements, handling paperwork, inspections and other items associated with buying and selling homes.

By comparison, local brokers charge 4 to 6 percent on the sale of a home, which typically amounts to $12,000 to $16,000, Henderson said.

In Henderson's first two weeks of business, which started this month, he has listed 12 homes.

The office is located in the First Bank building near Mendenhall Mall. This is the second Assist-2-Sell branch in Alaska.

Henderson is a member of the Southeast Alaska Multiple Listing Service and the National Association of Realtors.

Shop offers goods, apparel from Nepal

A former Alaska state employee from Nepal has opened a variety shop downtown selling goods and apparel from his home country.

Owner Raj Maskay developed the idea while pursuing a master's degree in Colorado. Similar stores were located in Denver and Boulder, he said.

Alaska Nepal, which opened in the spring, offers dresses, sweaters, hats, gloves and other clothing made in Nepal. It also sells handcrafted spiritual items with Hindu and Buddhist themes.

Maskay and his wife and two children run the store, located on Seward Street. Inventory is shipped to Juneau by Maskay's relatives in Nepal. He also makes regular visits to pick up items.

"I'm surprised to see so many people in Juneau have been to Nepal, Tibet and India," Maskay said. Many of his customers are locals.

The Maskay family will also offer advice to those interested in traveling to Nepal.

Fred Meyer to hold interview sessions

Fred Meyer is looking to fill more than a dozen positions this weekend as it will host interview sessions Sunday and Monday.

The grocer and retailer wants clerks, cashiers and freight handlers for its food, home furnishings, photo electronics, pharmacy and apparel departments.

Interview sessions will last about two and a half hours and applicants should be prepared for interviews and drug screenings. Sessions begin at 8:30 a.m. and will run through 6:30 p.m.

No experience is necessary for several positions. Benefit packages are included in employment.

• Business briefs are compiled by Empire reporter Andrew Petty. If you know of any businesses opening, closing or relocating, or of other business-related news, please contact the reporter at

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