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InvestSlovenia http://dev.tend.si/investslovenia/ Bussiness news en.UTF-8 TYPO3 News Tue, 22 May 2018 15:54:35 +0200 Tue, 22 May 2018 15:54:35 +0200 TYPO3 EXT:news news-5121 Mon, 21 May 2018 00:00:00 +0200 Steel group earmarks EUR 6m for dividends https://www.investslovenia.org/news-media/business-news/steel-group-earmarks-eur-6m-for-dividends-5121/ Ljubljana, 21 May (STA) - SIJ, Slovenia's largest steel producer, will pay out dividends of 5.9 euro gross per share for a total dividend payout of EUR 5.7m, the shareholders decided on Monday. The bulk of accumulated profit, EUR 45.6m, has been retained. The shareholders also confirmed discharges for the management and supervisory board and authorised the management to buy out one of the small shareholders, Unior, which owns only ten shares or 0.001% of the share capital.

SIJ saw its sales revenue exceed EUR 1bn for the time last year, as group revenue rose by about 20% to EUR 1.012bn. Net profit decreased by about two-thirds to EUR 17.6m.

The company is in the majority ownership of Dilon, a Russian group, whereas the state has retained a controlling 25% stake.

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news-5120 Fri, 18 May 2018 00:00:00 +0200 Overnight stays, tourist arrivals in Slovenia up 13% and 15% in 2017 https://www.investslovenia.org/news-media/business-news/overnight-stays-tourist-arrivals-in-slovenia-up-13-and-15-in-2017-5120/ Ljubljana, 18 May (STA) - The final 2017 tourism data by the Statistics Office confirmed today the continuing strong expansion of the sector in Slovenia. The number of overnight stays exceeded 12 million for the first time last year, reaching 12.6 million and surpassing the 2016 figure by 13%. Tourist arrivals were up 15% to 4.95 million, also a new record. Foreign tourists contributed 3.59 million arrivals, a 18% rise, and 8.57 million overnight stays, a 17% increase. Slovenians also made 6% more tourist trips within the country, while their overnight stays increased by 5%.

The share of overnight stays accounted for by foreign tourists has been rising ever since 2009. It stood at 55% then, at 62% in 2016, and 68% last year.

Italians (14%), Germans (12%) and Austrians (11%) led the overnight stays statistics among European guests, followed by the Dutch and Croatians (5% each), the British and Hungarians (4% each). The biggest uptick was recorded for the Dutch (35%), Germans (26%) and Hungarians (21%).

Non-European guests accounted for a combined 13% of overnight stays. The biggest rise was recorded in 2017 for Chinese visitors (37%), followed by those from South Korea (31%), Australia (23%), Canada (26%), the US (21%), and Japan (11%). The figure for Israelis fell by 17%.

In 2017, the highest number of overnight stays was recorded in mountain resorts, over 3.4 million (27% of all overnight stays) or 19% more than in 2016.

Mountain resorts overtook spa resorts for the first time in terms of overnight stays - the latter recorded 3.31 million overnight (26% of all overnight stays), which is 5% more than in 2016.

Seaside resorts (20% of all overnight stays) recorded an 11% increase and the capital of Ljubljana (12% of all overnight stays) a 16% increase in the number of overnight stays.

In 2017, more than 46,000 rooms or apartments with almost 135,000 beds were available to tourists in Slovenia; 39% in hotels and motels, boarding houses, etc., 19% in camping sites and 42% at other facilities.

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news-5119 Fri, 18 May 2018 00:00:00 +0200 Petrol's net profit in Q1 up 11% to EUR 17.9m https://www.investslovenia.org/news-media/business-news/petrols-net-profit-in-q1-up-11-to-eur-179m-5119/ Ljubljana, 18 May (STA) - Energy group Petrol's sales rose by 6% to EUR 1.2bn in the first quarter of the year compared to the same period in 2017. The rise was mainly due to costlier oil. Net profit was up by 11% to EUR 17.9m, Petrol said in a press release on Friday, a day after the supervisory board got acquainted with the results. Adjusted gross profit in the first three months of the year increased by 10% to EUR 102.2m, while earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) were up 15% to EUR 37.7m.

The group generated 52% of EBITDA in fuel retail, 21% in energy and environmental systems, 17% in retail, 8% in retail of liquefied natural gas and 2% in trading with other energy sources.

The group sold 729.000 tonnes of petroleum products in the first three months of the year or 4% less than in the same period last year. The drop is attributed to the lower sales of extra-light heating oil, which was compensated with the sale of other energy sources for heating.

Petrol sold 7.35 million MWh of natural gas, which is a significant rise over the same period last year due to the complete consolidation of the gas wholesaler Geoplin. It also sold 38,300 tonnes of liquefied natural gas, a 4% increase year-on-year.

The retail section generated EUR 151.9m in revenue or 12% more than in the first quarter of 2017.

At the end of March, the group had a total of 494 petrol stations, of which 317 operated in Slovenia, 105 in Croatia, 38 in Bosnia-Herzegovina, 12 in Serbia, 11 in Montenegro and just as many in Kosovo.

Petrol said in the press release published on the web site of the Ljubljana Stock Exchange that it was currently overhauling its IT system and would continue to optimise all its business processes.

Last year, Petrol generated EUR 4.5bn in sales revenue, EUR 112.2m in operating profit and EUR 81.1m in net profit.

Its goal for this year is to match sales revenue and increase net profit to EUR 86.9m.

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news-5112 Thu, 17 May 2018 00:00:00 +0200 Slovenians still below EU average in perceived opportunities https://www.investslovenia.org/news-media/business-news/slovenians-still-below-eu-average-in-perceived-opportunities-5112/ Maribor, 17 May (STA) - Detection of business opportunities by individuals in Slovenia has improved compared to the previous years, but the country still lags behind the EU average in this field, according to the latest Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) survey. The share of Slovenians who perceive business opportunities stands at 34.6% in the 2017 survey, up from 25% in 2016, but this is still well below the European average of 41%.

Miroslav Rebernik, the head of the GEM survey team in Slovenia, has told the STA that the main reason is the education system in Slovenia failing to encourage entrepreneurship.

There is a global battle for talent going on and Slovenia is not effective in this department, he said, adding that "universities provide very good knowledge, but they do not encourage innovativeness and creativity".

Nevertheless, more than half of Slovenians (53%) believe that they have capabilities for entrepreneurship, which puts Slovenia in the first place in Europe in this respect.

Slovenians are also courageous, as fear of failure in business was expressed by 35% of the respondents, which is below the European average of 43%.

Slovenia has also improved in terms of entrepreneurial intentions, with the share of adult individuals who think about establishing a business increasing by 2.4 percentage points to 16.7%.

The share of those who actually make a decision to start a business is however still at a lowly 4%.

The rate the country's inclusion in international exchange is among the highest in the EU, as is the rate of internationalisation, which according to Rebernik is related to Slovenia's small size.

The share of companies who said that more than a quarter of buyers of their products or services come from abroad is 42%.

The Total Early-stage Entrepreneurial Activity (TEA) index, which shows the share of the population who is establishing a business or has a new business, dropped to 6.9% from 8% in 2016.

The gender ratio has improved but still remains below the European average, standing at 0.46, or 4.6 female entrepreneurs per 10 male entrepreneurs.

Early-stage entrepreneurial activity among the people aged between 55 and 64 increased in the last two years from 5.5% to 7.4%.

But Rebernik believes that entrepreneurship among women, older people and youth is still not sufficiently encouraged.

The survey meanwhile shows that entrepreneurs are respected in Slovenia, with 73.4% of the respondents saying that they enjoy a high status, which puts Slovenia in the 5th place in Europe.

More than half of Slovenians (55.1%) believe that entrepreneurship is a good career choice, while more than 70% detected a positive media perception of entrepreneurship in the media, which puts Slovenia in the second place in Europe.

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news-5113 Thu, 17 May 2018 00:00:00 +0200 Kovinoplastika Lož increases revenue, profit https://www.investslovenia.org/news-media/business-news/kovinoplastika-loz-increases-revenue-profit-5113/ Lož, 17 May (STA) - Steel fittings producer Kovinoplastika Lož made EUR 68.5 million in group net revenue last year, up 7% from the year before, with EBIT up 125% to EUR 2.7 million. One-off effects excluded, EBITDA reached EUR 5.4 million, or 28% more than in 2016, the Lož-based group said in a press release on Thursday.

For this year Kovinoplastika, which has been in Finnish ownership since February 2017, plans similar growth figures and hefty investments to expand business.

It therefore also plans to hire new staff, mostly engineers and salespeople.

Kovinoplastika considers its operations in 2017 under the new owner - the fund KJK - successful, having reached most of its goals despite high prices of key inputs.

The group also made investment to optimize production processes and to purchase new equipment for new products.

It strengthened R&D, which will result in a wide range of new, technologically more advanced products that will be put on the market this year and in coming years.

Kovinoplastika produces building fittings and components for building fittings as well as components for the automotive industry.

Its Alveus line features kitchen sinks, kitchen taps, kitchen drainer systems and waste segregation bin systems.

The group consists of the parent company in Slovenia and eight foreign subsidiaries, of which only one is a production facility.

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news-5114 Thu, 17 May 2018 00:00:00 +0200 Intereuropa reports EUR 1.3m net profit for Q1 https://www.investslovenia.org/news-media/business-news/intereuropa-reports-eur-13m-net-profit-for-q1-5114/ Koper, 17 May (STA) - The logistics group Intereuropa generated EUR 1.3m in net profit in the first quarter of the year, a 49% year-on-year increase. Sales revenue was up 10% to EUR 38.8m, Intereuropa said on Thursday. The group's earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) reached EUR 3.6m, 6% more than in the first quarter of 2017, while operating profit rose 20% to EUR 2.1m.

The company attributes the upbeat results to "intensive sales activities along with favourable economic conditions".

It added that the group reduced its net financial debt by 4% or by EUR 2.9m in the first quarter.

Intereuropa, once the biggest player on the national logistics market, was put up for sale again in early April, two years after a previous sale attempt was abandoned.

The company said in April that five banks which own 72.13% of all shares had signed a contract of mandate with consultancy PwC regarding the sale of the shares.

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news-5115 Thu, 17 May 2018 00:00:00 +0200 Ground broken for Lonstroff elastomer facility in Logatec https://www.investslovenia.org/news-media/business-news/ground-broken-for-lonstroff-elastomer-facility-in-logatec-5115/ Logatec, 17 May (STA) - A tree-planting ceremony in Logatec symbolically marked today the start of construction of an elastomer production facility by Lonstroff, part of Japan's Sumitomo Rubber Industries. Lonstroff expects to receive all permits by the end of the month and launch production in April next year. A Japanese cherry tree and a Slovenian lime tree were planted in the abandoned section of the industrial zone in Logatec, a city 30 kilometres south-west of Ljubljana.

Sumitomo Rubber Industries CEO Ikuji Ikeda was also on hand. He said he was proud that this will be the first new investment in such an industrial area in Slovenia.

He added today was an important milestone for the investment, which had required the bridging of a number of challenges up to this point.

Outgoing Prime Minister Miro Cerar spoke of an important new asset for Logatec and the whole of Slovenia.

High-tech investments, which have also included Hitachi's as part of the Nedo project and Yaskawa's in Kočevje, bring a high added value and have many multiplicative effects, he said.

While also noting the significance of reviving an abandoned industrial zone, Cerar is convinced the Swiss-Japanese-Slovenian partnership is a guarantee for success on the global market.

The environmental permit for the investment, which is a condition for a building permit, is still pending. Lonstroff has had to supplement its permit application, it however expects both permits will be issued by the end of the month.

The investment is estimated at EUR 48m and is expected to secure 180 jobs. Lonstroff plans to produce around 6bn units a year and generate EUR 40m in revenue. The government has backed it with a EUR 4.8m state incentive.

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news-5107 Wed, 16 May 2018 00:00:00 +0200 Slovenia 45th most popular destination for conventions https://www.investslovenia.org/news-media/business-news/slovenia-45th-most-popular-destination-for-conventions-5107/ Ljubljana, 16 May (STA) - Slovenia hosted 68 congresses and conventions last year, which makes it the 45th most popular destination for such events in the world, according to a survey by the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA). The list was topped by the US, which hosted 941 events. The US is followed by Germany with 682 events, the UK with 592 events, and Spain and Italy with 564 and 515 events, respectively. Europe thus remains a leading continent, having hosted 53.6% of all scientific and professional meetings, Turizem Ljubljana said in today's press release.

Ljubljana hosted 44 events to rank 56th among cities, sharing the spot with Croatia's Zagreb. This is a slightly poorer result than the year before, when it was 47th with 54 events.

Barcelona was the most popular city for congresses and conventions for the first time since 2004. It hosted a total of 195 events. Paris, which was the top destination in 2016, ranked second last year with 190 events.

The first non-European city on the list is Singapore in sixth place with 160 events.

Ljubljana ranked close to Krakow (45 events) and Tallinn and Munich (46 events each), and was followed by Göteborg (41), Florence (40) and Bucharest (39).

Among European cities, the Slovenian capital ranked 28th.

The most congresses and conventions were held in Ljubljana in October, September, June and May.

The annual ICCA country and city rankings report is the most respected global comparison of destinations' performance in attracting international meetings, the association says on its web site.

However, the report covers only a narrow segment of the meetings industry, only including international association meetings that rotate between at least three countries, have a proven attendance of at least 50 participants, and are held on a regular basis.

This means that it does not include data on business conferences, intergovernmental meetings and motivational trips, which are an important part of the international meetings industry, Turizem Ljubljana said, noting that 2018 will be a record-breaking year in terms of congress events for Ljubljana.

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news-5108 Wed, 16 May 2018 00:00:00 +0200 Insurer Triglav reports 5% quarterly profit growth https://www.investslovenia.org/news-media/business-news/insurer-triglav-reports-5-quarterly-profit-growth-5108/ Ljubljana, 16 May (STA) - Slovenia's leading insurance group, Triglav, posted a net profit of EUR 23.3m in the first quarter of the year, an increase of 5% year-on-year, as consolidated gross written premium rose 4% to EUR 293m. The group saw premium growth in all its markets with the average growth in Slovenia at 4% and in other markets at 6%, according to a release from the core company Zavarovalnica Triglav.

Premium in property insurance and health insurance rose by 6%, while life insurance premium decreased by 3%, which the company says is primarily the result of positive one-off events in the first quarter of 2017.

Major catastrophe (CAT) events had no impact on the group's quarterly performance. It paid out EUR 171m in gross claims, an increase of 12% compared to the corresponding period last year.

The increase is attributed mainly on the non-life insurance claims that incurred and were reported in 2017, for which adequate provisions were made and which had been reinsured.

The growth in gross claims paid was also affected by the increase in the health insurance portfolio and claim frequency, which resulted from the changed age structure of insured persons.

The positive results reflect good performance in the company's core business, while the return on the investment worth EUR 3.1bn dropped by 39% compared to 2017.

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news-5109 Wed, 16 May 2018 00:00:00 +0200 Cinkarna Celje operates above plans in first quarter https://www.investslovenia.org/news-media/business-news/cinkarna-celje-operates-above-plans-in-first-quarter-5109/ Celje, 16 May (STA) - Chemical company Cinkarna Celje made EUR 13m in net profit in the first quarter of 2018, which is almost EUR 5m above plans, on EUR 52.5m in sales revenues, 5% above plans. Compared to the same period last year, the profit soared by 86% and revenue increased by 17%, the company reported on Wednesday. Figures were above plans mostly as a result of the rising prices of titanium oxide pigment, whose sales actually decreased by 12% compared to the same period last year. Prices rose by 41% compared to March last year.

Additionally, Cinkarna continued to streamline its portfolio of strategic business areas to further focus on its core programme.

The company's investment drive was also above plans as it had invested EUR 5.6m in fixed assets or 22% more than planned. The figure is double that of the first three months last year.

The company mostly invested in modernisation, intensification, energy efficiency and environmental acceptability of titanium dioxide pigment production.

Financially speaking, Cinkarna is stable and repays all obligations on time. It has no banking debt, the company added.

"The management assesses that the 2018 plan is realistically attainable," said Cinkarna Celje boss Tomaž Benčina.

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