In Brief - 2003-04-10

  • 2003-04-10

Renovated park for Klaipedians

Klaipeda's seaport will offer its residents a substantially renovated recreation park this year, as the Dutch company Megaparkas intends to invest over 40 million litas (11.59 million euros) in the park's reconstruction.

By early summer the amusement park will be equipped with 12 different attractions, and a large open-air swimming pool will be ready by autumn, according to the seaport daily Vakaru Ekspresas.

The plans are to keep the park opened throughout the year. In cold weather, most attractions will be placed under special covers containing state-of-the-art heating facilities. Officials from Megaparkas, which operates some 20 amusement parks in other countries, said they expected a return on investments within 3 or 4 years. (Baltic News Service)

Mass layoff at Lattelekom

Lattelekom, owned by the Latvian state and Scandinavian company TeliaSonera, formed a 2.6 million lat (4.1 million euro) provision last year for laysoffs ahead of planned sizable staff reduction, the Economy Ministry reported.

Lattelekom said the layoff came amid need to reduce costs. The company plans to reduce its staff from 3,959 to 3,000 by the end of this year, then to 2,800 by the end of 2004, and so on until it will have 2,200 employees by the end of 2007. This year Lattelekom expects personnel costs to decrease by 6 percent due to the layoffs. For the rest of employees the company will raise wages by 5 percent- 10 percent, according to a draft financial plan.

Last year Lattelekom posted profits of 21.8 million lats, down 11.4 percent from 2001, on net sales of 143.8 million lats, unchanged from 2001. (BNS)

Sangar reorganizing structure

The Tartu-based garment maker AS Sangar has decided to bring retail activity back under the parent company's wing and has for this purpose reduced the share capital of its clothes retail subsidiary to a minimum.

The decision to remerge was made, according to Gunnar Kraft, chairman of AS Sangar supervisory board, since having a separate legal entity didn't produce the desired effect. Under the previous structure, AS Sangar and AS Sangar Valga Vabrik (Sangar Valga Factory) were in charge of production while Sangari Kaubanduse OU (Sangar Trading) took care of retail and stores.

Sangari Kaubanduse OU continues to exist for the time being for legal reasons, though it may be liquidated in the future, said Kraft. The share capital of the company was reduced by 360,000 kroons to 40,000 kroons (2,500 euros).

The plans right now do not call for a merger of AS Sangar and AS Sangari Valga Vabrik, Kraft added. (BNS)

Klaipeda shipper to get investment

The Lithuanian cargo forwarding company Limarko and VB Rizikos Kapitalo Valdymas (VB Risk Capital Management), a subsidiary of Vilniaus Bankas, are planning to set up a jointly owned company for investments in the shipping company Klaipedos Transporto Laivynas.

Limarko and VB Rizikos Kapitalo Valdymas have applied to the country's competition council for permission to indirectly acquire 100 percent of shares in KTL. Officials at the competition council said that Limarko would own 51 percent of Limarko Laivininkystes Kompanija (Limarko Shipping Company), the new company, and VB Rizikos Valdymas would have a 49 percent stake.

Vytautas Lygnugaris, CEO of Limarko, said the joint investment project, including the price of KTL shares and tender offer costs, should reach around 50 million to 55 million litas (15.9 million euros).

The government set a minimum selling price of 48.6 million litas for an 80.8 percent stake in KTL, or 0.46 litas a share. According to unofficial information available to Baltic News Service, Limarko offered to pay the minimum price.

Limarko, the sole bidder, has completed negotiations with the State Property Fund over the acquisition of the majority stake in KTL. An agreement is expected to be signed in late April and early May. (BNS)

Adecco comes to Baltics

Adecco, the world's biggest recruitment firm, is planning to set up subsidiaries in Estonia and the other Baltic countries.

Aleksei Yakovlew, coordinator of the Estonian project, said that Adecco would come to Estonia via Finland as the two countries have a similar business culture. The recruiter will enter Latvia and Lithuania through the group's Polish and Czech subsidiaries. At present Adecco Estonia is looking for a manager and office premises, said Yakovlew, adding that the company wants to launch operations in the country at the end of June.

If around the world, Adecco's main sphere of activity is recruitment of personnel for temporary jobs, the firm also hunts for permanent and professional employees. In Estonia the company will mainly focus on permanent jobs in the initial years of operations in the country, Jakovlew said.

The reason for entry into the Estonian market, Jakovlew said, is Adecco's strategy of constant group development and expansion: five years earlier it operated in about 45 countries, but at present it is represented in 63 countries. (BNS)