Lithuania's privatization authority approved a draft agreement to sell an 85.72 percent stake in Mazeikiu Elektrine (Mazeikiai Power Plant) to the Mazeikiu Nafta oil refinery, the plant's dominant consumer. The refinery, which is currently controlled by Yukos, the ailing Russian oil company, will pay 17.8 million litas (5.2 million euros) for the stake in the combined heat and power plant. It also intends to buy out the minority shareholders, which would bring the total cost of the investment to 20.8 million litas. Falkon Capital, a Czech-registered company, offered to pay 18 million litas for the stake, but privatization officials eliminated the bid as "unreliable." The power plant produced 681.4 million kilowatt-hours of electricity last year, of which 99.9 percent was sold to Mazeikiu Nafta.
Alytaus Tekstile (Alytus Textile), the largest cotton textile producer in the Baltics, is gradually climbing out of financial difficulties after a failed privatization deal with Singapore's Tolaram Group. The Lietuvos Zinios daily reported that the company could not cope with new orders from customers, not only due to insufficient working capital but also a shortage of workers. The company has posted 48 million litas (14 million euros) in sales so far this year.
The Baltic Republics Fund investment fund sold its 34.56 percent holding in Baltika, a garment maker, for 216 million kroons (13.8 million euros). The fund sold 2,012,400 shares at 6.86 euros or 107.34 kroons per share, slightly lower than the company's price on the stock exchange. BMIG, a company owned by Baltika's executives, acquired 250,000 shares, or 4.29 percent of outstanding stock, raising its stake to 22.78 percent. The remaining 1,762,400 shares were sold to local and international institutional investors.
The much-awaited opening of a DVD manufacturing plant in Tallinn was postponed. An official of Baltic Disc AS, a Lithuanian-owned company running the venture, said that construction was still ongoing and the plant would open in the fall. Total investments are estimated to reach 44 million kroons (2.8 million euros). The plant will have a capacity of some 10 million CDs and DVDs per year.