Company briefs - 2004-03-18

  • 2004-03-18
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development sold its 28.6 percent stake in Utenos Trikotazas, Lithuania's largest producer of knit apparel, last week.

The stake was sold in a block deal for 30.34 million litas (8.8 million euros), or 5.35 litas per share, fixing the company's market cap at 106.1 million litas. SBA, the Kaunas-based furniture concern was the largest shareholder in Utenos Trikotazas as of last September with a 46.47 percent stake.

Two Latvian meat producers, Ruks and Lankalni, have received permission to export to EU member states, Latvian Agriculture Minister Martins Roze announced. The two companies had to wait for six months to get the permits due to the backlog in Brussels offices, but Roze said that he hoped such delays would not be repeated in the future. Ruks and Lankalni are the first Latvian companies that have received the European Commission's authorization.

Estonia's largest brewery Saku Olletehas and Finnish beer leader Sinebrychoff will organize the sale and marketing of Saku Originaal in Finland starting May. Saku Olletehas Chairman Cardo Remmel (photo) said that Saku's goal was not to compete with the local beers but with other imported brands, the demand for which has been on the rise in Finland. "The price level of Saku Originaal will be equal with the Finnish quality beers Karhu and Koff, and our price formation will be in line with that of imported beers. As a result, a very competitive price will be formed," he said.

Enterprise Estonia proposed that Japanese carriers Japan Airlines and All Nippon Airways launch flights from Tokyo to Tallinn. According to the daily Eesti Paevaleht, the airlines said the idea was worth considering. "Nothing has been decided yet, but just the fact that representatives of the companies are coming here is a big deal," Enterprise Estonia press officer Edith Kiilmaa said. In addition, Enterprise Estonia has suggested that Japanese companies establish their north European operations in Tallinn. Currently Finnair flies between Helsinki and Tokyo and SAS between Copenhagen and the Japanese capital.

The new Tallink ship, Regal Star, had to delay its inaugural trip to Sweden due to engine problems. The vessel, which is docked in Paldiski, apparently wasn't revving up properly and had to undergo maintenance, the SL Ohtuleht daily reported. As a result some 50 trucks hoping to sail to Kapellskar, Sweden, had to wait in the dock or find alternative means of transport across the Baltic Sea. The fault was reportedly electronics-related, and once it was eliminated on March 12 the Regal Star set sail. Tallink's technical director Ulo Kollo said the company had not expected the ship would suffer engine failure while sailing from the BLRT shipyard to Paldiski. "All kinds of things may happen, but not to a new ship," Kollo was quoted as saying.

Riga International Airport has invested more than 30 million lats (45 million euros) in development over the past 10 years, President Dzintars Pomers said. The money, both from own resources and loans, was invested in the aviation infrastructure and the airport's surrounding environment. Regarding the next 10 years, Pomers said that he envisioned even more development, as the area around the airport is rented out to office centers and logistics companies. He said that construction of a mail-sorting complex for the national postal service, Latvijas Pasts, would soon begin.