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Business Notes

AIU May Split From AIG

NEW YORK — AIU Holdings, the recently renamed AIG division that contains the company’s commercial and general insurance operations — including its extended-warrantee business — is being positioned for a possible initial public offering (IPO) within a year. The split, which would be prefaced by a rebranding this summer, would distance the financially sound insurance division from the financial products group, which was the source of AIG’s woes.

According to Matt Frankel, president of AIU Holding’s warranty division, AIU services 94 percent of companies on the Fortune 500, had net profits of $1.6 billion last year on sales of $38 billion, and neither requested nor received any federal bailout funds. An IPO would “allow us to get back to our roots of being an insurance company,” Frankel said.

Flanner’s Cops Web Award

BROOKFIELD,, the e-commerce site of Flanner’s Home Entertainment, received a Communicator Award of Excellence in the Consumer Electronics Web Site category in the 15th Annual Communicator Awards. The international awards program is judged by the International Academy of the Visual Arts, whose members include executives from Coach, Disney, Estee Lauder, HBO, MTV, Polo Ralph Lauren, Sotheby’s Institute of Art, Victoria’s Secret, Wired and Yahoo!

Flanner’s site was created by its in-house marketing team, including graphic design specialist Bridget Benzel and marketing manager Todd Errath, in partnership with Milwaukee-based Lightburn Designs.

Hawaiian Rep Firm Holds Designer Summit

WAIPAHU, HAWAII — Pride of Hawaii, a 10-year-old CE rep firm based here, recently hosted a one-day summit to introduce home A/V integration to the architectural, design, and lighting communities. “CE dealers and integrators in Hawaii and the surrounding islands don’t have the luxury of frequent meetings with manufacturers due to traveling constraints,” said principal Marco Colindres. “Our goal was to bring our home-integration vendors together with the design communities to address and support their specific needs.” Some 100 designers, integrators, lighting specifiers, dealers and manufacturers attended the spring event, which featured products from Denon, Elan, KEF, Monster Cable, OmniMount, SIM2, Sonance, Stewart Filmscreen, Vantage Lighting and Xantech, among others.