Larry Ellison, the billionaire founder of Oracle Corporation (NASDAQ: ORCL), is adding yet another odd purchase to his vast private holdings. His purchase of megayachts, racing yachts, multiple airplanes, mansions, and more is a rather long list that reaches into the billions of dollars. After purchasing the Hawaiian island of Lanai, now Ellison has closed upon the purchase of Island Air. We cannot help but to ask if Larry Ellison is trying to become Mr. Roarke or if he is going to recreate the old television series Fantasy Island.
After Ellison purchased the majority of the Island of Lanai, he told CNBC that Lanai would become a lab of sustainable business on a small scale. No tourism plans were shown at the time but the island was going to have solar power, electric cars, and even organic farms. Island Air flies turboprop planes with 224 weekly flights between Hawaii’s major islands of O’ahu, Maui, Moloka’i, Lana’i and Kaua’i.
Fantasy Island was a show that ran in the late 1970s through the early 1980s. Its key star was Ricardo Montalban as the island’s host Mr. Roarke. His peculiar assistant (or whatever you would call him) Tattoo was well known for his phrase every show “The plane! The plane!” which printed words cannot quite capture in the same accent. Guests would arrive by float plane at the start of each show.
This marks yet another odd purchase by yet another eccentric billionaire. With Ellison buying a Hawaiian island and the airline that flies there, it is hard not to ask if Larry Ellison is trying to recreate Fantasy Island here.
Jon C. Ogg