||Lithuania Business News: Archive 2003-
Saturday, 14th of April
Gubernija stops its production
Gubernija, a major Lithuanian beer producer, has stopped production due to financial difficulties, and its new CEO, Romas Bubnelis, has handed in his resignation.
Vitas Tomkus, the publisher of the Respublika daily newspaper, took over control of the company last week. Gubernija's management board, which was appointed last week, said in a statement that it intended to resign as well.
Bubnelis confirmed that Gubernija was in a critical financial situation. He said that the company did not have enough financial resources to get its operations back to normal.
Bubnelis would not say if the management intended to initiate bankruptcy proceedings.
Lietuvos Rytas, Kauno Diena, Lietuvos Zinios
Nord Stream will not consider its overland pipeline
Nord Stream, the Russian-German joint venture building a gas pipeline along the bottom of the Baltic Sea, does not intend to consider the option of an overland pipeline.
"The route of the pipeline has been given thorough consideration, and it has been decided that it will be an undersea rather than an overland pipeline," Nord Stream representative Neel Stroebak said. Stroebak said that Nord Stream's decision to lay the pipeline on the seabed was final and that the planned route could only be modified because of environmental or other problems. We do not intend to re-evaluate the project and evaluate it in light of the option for a similar overland project. If somebody wants to build a pipeline on the land, they can do so, because the Nord Stream pipeline will not meet the entire gas needs of Europe," she said. Stroebak underlined that the company did not need any official permission from Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia for the project because the pipeline would not run through the territorial waters or economic zones of these countries.
Lietuvos Zinios, Lietuvos Rytas
Internet breaks again
Teo LT does not succeed in repairing its communications breakdown. Internet did not work for some Teo LT business clients for some time on Friday. The company stated that internet breakdown was registered in all the country from 10 minutes to one hour. The breakdown was repaired at 11.30 a.m. Teo LT internet connection broke down in March for three days, clients also could not use digital TV Gala service.
Friday, 13th of April
Poland overtakes Russia
Poland overtook Russia last year to become the number-one foreign investor in Lithuania, due largely to PKN Orlen's acquisition of the Mazeikiu Nafta refinery.
Polish investment in Lithuania totalled LTL 6.5 billion as of January 1, 2007, accounting for 22.6 percent of all foreign direct investment (FDI) in the country.
The total FDI in Lithuania stood at LTL 28.8 as of early January, rising by LTL 4.9 billion or 20.4 percent from the same period a year ago.
Denmark was the second largest investor with 15.3 percent of the FDI, followed by Sweden with 10.6 percent, Germany with 9.9 percent and Finland with 6.7 percent. Lietuvos Zinios, Lietuvos Rytas, Verslo Zinios
Siauliu Bankas raises profit
Lithuania's fast-growing bank Siauliu Bankas posted a net profit of LTL 9.166 million for the first quarter of this year, a rise of 52.7 percent from LTL 6 million a year earlier. Siauliu Bankas expects to double its annual net profit this year, to LTL 26 million from LTL 13.651 million it posted last year.
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and six other shareholders, acting in concert, control a combined stake of 39.59 percent in the bank, which is headquartered in Siauliai, in northern Lithuania.
DnB Nord Bankas raises profit
DnB Nord Bankas, the third-largest Lithuanian bank by assets, said its first-quarter net profit surged by 46.4 percent to LTL 24.2 million from LTL 16.5 million in the same period a year ago. DnB Nord Bankas had assets worth LTL 7.84 billion last year, up 38.5 percent year-on-year. The bank said the growth was due largely to a strong growth of the loan portfolio. The total loan portfolio soared by 46.5 percent year-on-year to LTL 6.29 billion at the end of March, with loans to individual customers up 60.9 percent to LTL 2.79 billion and loans to corporate customers up 5.8 percent to LTL 3.5 billion. Customer savings and investment accounts rose by 33.6 percent year-on-year to LTL 3.87 billion. The deposit portfolio increased by 23.1 percent to LTL 3.35 billion, according to the statement.
Thursday, 12th of April
Consumer prices rise
Consumer prices in Lithuania rose by 0.6 percent in March compared with February, the Statistics Department reported.
The average annual inflation rate was 4 percent, and the 12-month inflation rate was 4.6 percent. Month-on-month, prices of consumer goods increased by 0.6 percent and prices of services were up 0.5 percent.
The monthly consumer price index in March was pushed up by rises of 1.8 percent in transport costs, 0.6 percent in food and soft drink prices and clothes and footwear prices each, and 0.4 percent in housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuel prices.
That was partly offset by a 0.2 percent decline in communication costs.
Lietuvos Zinios, Respublika
Biok raises its profit
Lithuanian cosmetics producer Biok said its first-quarter sales rose by LTL 2.06 million
"The unusually warm weather in the winter pushed down sales of face and hand creams. However, we have increased our investment in other product groups, shampoos and shower gels, in recent years. The broad product range has helped us to reduce seasonal influences and ensure stable operations almost all year round," Biok Director Linas Cereska said.
As part of its continuing investment in production expansion and automation, the company purchased new automated labelling equipment last month and intends to buy automated packaging equipment in the future.
Achema revenues soar
Lithuanian nitrogen fertilizer and chemical product manufacturer Achema said its first-quarter revenue soared by 50 percent year-on-year to LTL 353.9 million.
However, the company ended the first quarter with a loss of LTL 0.5 million, blaming it on surging prices for gas and other feedstock.
"A sharp rise in key feedstock prices has reduced our competitiveness and forces us to revise our future investment projects. We are interested in technologies that require a lower input of expensive raw materials and energy, and we expect to find optimal solutions," Achema CEO Jonas Sirvydis said.
Achema has suspended for about half a year investments in the modernization of the urea production unit and other units.
Wednesday, 11th of April
Rokiskio Suris Group sales grow
Rokiskio Suris Group, the leading Lithuania's dairy group, reported LTL 144.66 million in unaudited consolidated sales for the first three months of 2007, a surge of 27.3 percent versus the year-earlier figure. In March alone, the sales of the group grew by 21.9 percent, year-on-year, to LTL 48.27 million. In 2006 the net profit of the group plunged by 38 percent, to LTL 13.082 million, as the sales rose by 9.4 percent, to LTL 517.67 million. Rokiskio Suris aims to pay LTL 2.36 per share in dividends from its 2006 net earnings.
Alna raises consolidated revenues
Alna, the leading Lithuania's IT group, posted LTL 162 million in consolidated revenues, which include the sales of stationery chain Daily Service, for full 2006, a rise of 21 percent versus the year-earlier figure. The group's turnover, excluding Daily Service, soared by 30 percent, to LTL 91.4 million, from LTL 70.3 million in 2005.
The revenues of IT subsidiaries on services and consultations accounted for 60 percent of the group's total turnover last year, Justina Milaknyte, head of the management board, said.
Vilniaus Vingis posts losses
Lithuanian asset management and TV deflection yoke production company Vilniaus Vingis posted losses of LTL 22.872 million for 2006. Sales fell by 40.5 percent last year to LTL 48.378 million. The company said that around LTL 9 million of the 2006 losses had resulted from the sale of subsidiary companies, LTL 4.5 million from the sale of unused equipment, and LTL 4 million from severance payments to former employees.
Vilniaus Vingis' shareholders are expected to take decisions on the company's future at the end of April.
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