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Duol looking to expand business

Ljubljana, 18 March (STA) - Engineering company Duol, best known as a manufacturer of air domes, generated about EUR 8m last year, which its director Dušan Olaj says is on a par with 2015, while profit increased slightly from EUR 18,200.

During President Borut Pahor's visit to Moscow in February, the Brezovica near Ljubljana-based company signed a contract with the biggest Russian association of fruit and vegetable growers on transfer of technology for inflatable greenhouses and the rights to sell them in Russia.

According to Olaj, Russian partners will set up facilities for the production of air supported greenhouses at three locations in three Russian regions.

Production will initially serve their needs, whereupon a joint foray into third markets is planned, mainly in central Asia and Iran.

Olaj said that doing business in the markets that used to form part of the former Soviet Union was much easier when conducted through Russia.

As a foreign company Duol has so far not been eligible for subsidies in Russia, but "the situation is changing substantially now".

The company also sees potential in space technologies as one of the most promising fields in the future.

However, Olaj said they were not counting on making fast profit in this field, with the initial plan being to invest in "once becoming a major player in the field".

"At the same time we can put what we learn from space technologies to best use on the ground."

Due to expansion the company is considering moving to another location, but Olaj could not reveal the details yet because they are still considering their future business model.

According to Olaj, the option favoured at the moment is to focus on development engineering and move more into "science and research sphere", which would also allow them to generate higher value added.