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ä The net turnover of the industrial and trade group AS Estiko was 485.1 million kroons ($34.16 million) and the net profit 6.8 million kroons last year, according to non-audited figures. The group's turnover target was 406 million kroons, which Estiko surpassed by 79.1 million kroons, but it only met 68 percent of its 10 million kroon profit target. The main reason why the profit was smaller than estimated was the higher than expected loss in the trade sector, Estiko financial director Igor Sada said. The consolidated results of the group's trade sector last year were 341.4 million kroons in turnover and 6 million kroons in profit. The consolidated turnover of the group's real estate sector last year was 22.3 million kroons and the profit 6.1 million kroons, while the industrial sector turned over 121.4 million kroons, producing a 6.7 million kroon profit. The industrial sector profit increased 157.7 percent in 1998.
ä The Uhispank group reported an audited loss of 383.4 million kroons in 1998, as compared with the 1997 profit of 211 million kroons. The most important reason for the loss was the financial crisis in the developing markets of the Far East, which started in the second half of 1997, and the collapse of the Russian economic and financial system last August, the bank informed the stock exchange. The Uhispank group earned a loss of 320 million kroons from its securities trading and investment portfolios last year. In addition, Uhispank increased its provisions at the auditor's recommendation, which increased the group's original loss figure by 93.4 million kroons.
ä The meat packing company Tukuma Galas Parstrades Sabiedriba's unaudited losses in 1998 were approximately 36,000 lats ($61,017), the company said in a statement released to the Riga Stock Exchange. In 1997 the company's profit was 34,645 lats on a turnover of 3,528,746 lats. The company's shares are quoted on the RSE second list. Its share capital is 1,504,000 lats.
ä In January and February of this year, the fiberglass manufacturer Valmieras Stikla Skiedra sold products worth 1.97 million lats. According to the report provided by the company to the Riga Stock Exchange, during the first two months of 1999 the company's sales grew by 12.6 percent more than over the same period in 1998. In January and February 1998 the company sold products worth close to 1.75 million lats. Its annual sales for 1998 were 12.7 million lats. Shares in Valmieras fiberglass are quoted on the second list of the Riga Stock Exchange.
ä Kalnapilis saw a 14.3 percent year-on-year drop in sales in February. The Panevezys-based brewery sold 4.72 million litas' ($1.18 million) worth of beer last month, compared with 5.51 million litas for the same month in 1998. With 210,000 decaliters of beer sold, Kalnapilis, which had been the leader of the Lithuanian beer market, came in second last month. It was outsold by Klaipeda's Svyturys.
ä The Lithuanian fuel company Lietuvos Kuras, which is currently undergoing privatization, posted an unaudited loss of 7.2 million litas in 1998. The figure is down from a loss of 21.9 million litas in 1997. The fuel company's turnover amounted to 257.5 million litas in 1998, down by 17.8 percent year-on-year, according to unaudited data. An international audit of Lietuvos Kuras is due to be completed by March 25. A shareholders meeting is scheduled for April 9. Lietuvos Kuras accounts for one-fifth of the country's market of retail trade in oil products.
ä Lithuania's Mazeikiu Nafta reported a loss of 97.9 million litas during 1998. The concern's spokeswoman, Virginija Kristinaitiene, said the loss had been calculated under the U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles. An audit of the Mazeikiai oil concern's financial results was performed by the international auditing firm Arthur Andersen. The Mazeikiai oil refinery, the offshore terminal at Butinge and the Birzai-based oil transit pipeline company Naftotiekis were merged into one single concern last December. The 98 million litas loss includes a 21.7 million litas business loss, 37.5 million litas in outstanding excise duties and VAT (still contested by the concern), 18.6 million litas in possible claims on the Butinge terminal and 20.1 million litas in other provisions. Mazeikiu Nafta's 1998 turnover amounted to 2.8 billion litas (excise duties excluded), according to audited data. It paid 1.5 billion litas in taxes, including excise duties and VAT, to the national treasury. The Mazeikiai refinery alone posted a gross profit of 39.13 million litas in 1997 after a loss of 17.79 million litas in 1996.
ä The Kaunas-based brewery Ragutis saw a year-on-year drop in sales by almost 33 percent during the first two months of 1999. The company sold 1.67 million litas' worth of beer in January - down from 2.45 million litas in 1998 - and 1.68 million litas of beer in February - down from 2.23 million litas last year. With 149,000 decaliters of beer sold, Ragutis took 8.3 percent of the country's beer market during the two months.
ä The refrigerator maker Snaige sold 800 fewer fridges than planned in January and February. The company, based in Alytus, southern Lithuania, sold a total of 26,400 fridges over the two months, including 5,500 sold in Lithuania. Snaige boosted its turnover by 3.7 percent year-on-year to over 10 million litas in January. It plans a lower turnover in February. The company hopes to catch up with its business plan in March thanks to an anticipated rise in sales, Snaige's marketing office said. Snaige's total sales last year amounted to 174.3 million litas. The fridge manufacturer, whose shares are quoted on the official list of the Lithuanian National Stock Exchange, posted a gross profit of 9.4 million litas in 1998.
ä Utenos Alus, ranking fourth among Lithuanian beer breweries, sold nearly 1.94 million litas' worth of beer in February. The total sales figure includes 507,000 litas' worth of the Auksinis brand made in Estonia. Last month, Utenos Alus sold 100,000 decaliters of beer, or 3.8 percent less than in January, which nevertheless accounted for 11.26 percent of the country's beer market.
ä Vilniaus Bankas, Lithuania's largest private bank, posted an audited net profit of more than 59.78 million litas for 1998. An audit performed by Arthur Andersen brought no adjustments to the bank's unaudited profit figure announced earlier. At the start of 1998, Vilniaus Bankas planned to have 73.6 million litas in annual net profit, but it failed to meet the target due to the Russian crisis. Vilniaus Bankas was the most successful bank in the Baltic states last year, according to preliminary results. The Lithuanian bank had a 47.6 million litas profit in 1997. Last year, the bank's net interest income made up 57 percent of its net income from banking activities. Net commission and service income made up 32 percent, and foreign exchange gains accounted for 11 percent. Vilniaus Bankas' audited assets amounted to almost 2.76 billion litas as of the end of last December, which was up by 52.9 percent year-on-year. The bank's loan portfolio grew by 336.2 million litas, or 38.7 percent, to over 1.20 billion litas during 1998. The volume of deposits increased 21.9 percent to more than 1.42 billion litas last year.