Ultra-mall poised to raise equity capital

  • 2005-08-31
  • Staff and wire reports
VILNIUS - Vilniaus Akropolis, the owner of the Vilnius-based mall, the largest in the Baltics, announced its intentions to go public this fall and list its stock on the Vilnius Stock Exchange.

The size of the equity offering has yet to be determined, said Diana Dominiene, an executive director of Vilniaus Prekyba, the sole shareholder of Vilniaus Akropolis. She added, however, that the issue would probably comprise 20 percent of the company's capital.

Previously Mindaugas Marcinkevicius, Vilniaus Akropolis chairman, refused to speak about the company's plans to go public in detail.

Vilniaus Prekyba executives in August selected Lehmus, Haavel & Viisemann, a leading Nordic investment bank, as advisor on raising capital on both domestic and foreign markets. Vilniaus Akropolis controls Akropolis malls in Vilnius, Kaunas and Klaipeda. In Latvia, it controls Rigas Akropole subsidiary and has daughter companies in Romania and Bulgaria.

Last year it posted a turnover of 37.3 million litas (10.8 million euros), a decline of 4.6 percent year-on-year. Pretax earnings plunged by 22.3 percent to 3.1 million litas.

In the past the company has borrowed extensively to finance its ambitious expansion plans, which could be the reason why it is resorting to equity capital. It is expected that Vilniaus Akropolis will be listed on the Current List of the Vilnius Stock Exchange.

Meanwhile, it was reported that the company has integrated Parko Investicijos (Park Investments), an investment company it controlled, and raised authorized capital by 31.1 million litas to 245.3 million litas.

Parko Investicija controls several land lots, which may be used to build new trade centers in the future.

"Vilniaus Akropolis is being set up as a real estate operator, so we have decided to incorporate Parko Investicija into the former company," Dominiene said.