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Vienna International Business News | Economic | Investment | Financial

Leadership Change: Mahrer Follows Leitl as Austrian Chamber of Commerce President

Harald Mahrer, President designate of the WKO Austrian Federal Chamber of Commerce, will take over from acting President Christoph Leitl on 18 May.

April 3, 2018

VIC Strengthens Presence in Hungary and Slovakia

Hungary’s central bank approved the merger of the three VIG Group companies. As a result VIG will be represented in Hungary solely by the insurance company Union Biztosító. In Slovakia, bancassurer Poisťovňa Slovenskej sporiteľne (PSLSP) will merge with Kooperativa poisťovňa.

April 3, 2018

Money Laundering: RBI Is Fined EUR 2.7 Million

The Austrian Financial Market Authority (FMA) has imposed the highest fine ever imposed by the FMA, i.e. a fine of EUR 2.748 million against Raiffeisen Bank International AG.

April 1, 2018

Austrian Budget Airline LaudaMotion: Fighting the Top Dog Lufthansa

LaudaMotion is to become a powerful low-cost airline. Ryanair ultimately intends to acquire a 75 percent stake. From June 2018, a total of 65 routes are to be served from Vienna, from seven German airports (Berlin/Tegel, Cologne, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Munich, Nuremberg, Stuttgart) and from Zurich to the Mediterranean region and to the Canary Islands.

March 30, 2018

Eurowings also Expands Vienna Connections

With the summer flight schedule 2018 Eurowings, the discount airline subsidiary of Lufthansa, is adding new destinations from Vienna to Corfu, Larnaca, Catania, Chania, Kos, Heraklion and Rhodes.

March 30, 2018 · Sponsored Content

Repatriation of Austrian Gold Reserves Nearing Completion

This year, and not in 2020, the OeNB Austrian National Bank is already concluding its repatriation campaign for half of its gold reserves. By the end of the year, 140 tonnes of gold are to be stored in Austria, with the other 140 tonnes remaining in London (84 tonnes) and Switzerland (56 tonnes).

March 30, 2018

Jens Weidmann Demands in Vienna an End to Massive Bond-Buying Program

The head of Deutsche Bundesbank, Jens Weidmann, visits Vienna to receive the Grand Decoration of Honour in Gold (Grosses Goldenes Ehrenzeichen) from Finance Minister Hartwig Löger. In his speech he called for a rapid end to bond purchases by the European Central Bank (ECB).

March 26, 2018

Austrian Support for Peace and Security Programm in Horn of Africa Region

Vienna based ADA - Austrian Development Agency signs an agreement on peace and security in the Horn of Africa with EU and IGAD (Intergovernmental Authority on Development). The EUTF - EU Emergency Trust Fund for Africa provides 40 million euros. 35 million of this will be made available to ADA and 5 million directly to IGAD. The ADA passes on one million euros to IGAD. The Swedish International Development Agency SIDA will also contribute one million euros..

March 26, 2018

Austria's Double Budget 2018/2019 - Cautious Optimism

Finance Minister Hartwig Löger (ÖVP) presented his first budget. Austria's new federal government wants to earn more than it spends. The double budget for 2018 and 2019 should herald a new era. The Austrian state has been spending more than it takes for 65 years and this is to be reversed for the first time in 2019. Debt policy is to be ended. A budget surplus of 541 million euros is to be achieved and thus a turning point in budget policy. Most money should be spent on pensions, least on health.

March 22, 2018

80th Anniversary of Mexico’s Protest Against Anschluss of Austria to Hitler-Germany

On 19 March 1938 Mexico submitted a note of protest to the League of Nations against the annexation of Austria by Nazi Germany (known as “Anschluss”). At that time Mexico was the only member of the League of Nations to issue a written protest.

March 21, 2018

Ryanair Acquires 75 Percent of LaudaMotion

The Irish low-cost airline Ryanair is paying 100 million euros for the share. Ryanair will initially take over 24.9 percent of Laudamotion and intends to increase it to 75 percent, subject to the approval of the EU competition authority. The airline founder will continue to be in charge.

March 20, 2018

TTTech Sets Up Joint Venture in Shanghai to Deploy Key Technology for Autonomous Driving Cars in China

The Vienna-based technology company TTTech and China's largest automotive group Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation (SAIC) announced a joint venture with the intention to produce an Intelligent Driving Central Controller (iECU), which will be installed on the first China-made intelligent driving vehicle later this year. TTTech holds 49.9 percent in the new joint venture.

March 15, 2018

RBI Doubles Net Profit, Pays Dividends Again and Returns to Growth Course

RBI - Raiffeisen Bank International has doubled its profit in 2017 and rewards shareholders. They have not received any dividends since 2013. The bank had to pursue a sharp austerity course, reduce international business volumes, close branches in Eastern Europe and stop dividend payments. Russia remains the most important source of income.

March 15, 2018

LGT Group Reports Profit of CHF 283.4 Mln

LGT, the private banking and asset management group owned by the Princely House of Liechtenstein, reported strong net asset inflows and a significant increase in profits for the 2017 financial year. Group profit for the full year rose 23% to CHF 283.4 million. Net asset inflows, excluding acquired assets, amounted to CHF 17.7 billion, which corresponds to organic growth of 12%. As at the end of 2017, assets under management increased by a total of 33% to CHF 201.8 billion.

March 12, 2018

Annual Report of the European Commission: How did Austria do?

The European Commission presented its annual reports on 27 EU member states. How did Austria do? Well, it kinda ended up with a black eye. The report took a pop at Vienna for a number of structural shortcomings, including tax burden on labour, pension and healthcare expenditures, house prices, restrictive regulation in the services markets, stagnating productivity and and not enough action on spreading digital technologies. That isn’t a particularly good report card for the previous coalition government of ÖVP und SPÖ. Let’s see if the new coalition government of ÖVP und FPÖ can make the grade the next time around.

March 11, 2018

ATX: AT&S and FACC to Join, Agrana and Zumtobel to be Removed

The ATX index composition of the Vienna Stock Exchange has been reviewed on its quarterly basis. FACC AG will be joining ATX for the first time since it became exchange-listed. AT&S AG will rejoin. Agrana and Zumtobel will be removed. Decisions on additions and removals to the index are based on average daily trading volumes and the free float capitalization of companies.

March 9, 2018

Austrian Delegation Seeks to Improve Economic and Political Relations with Jordan

An official visit of President Van der Bellen to Jordan will take place from 17 April to 19 April 2018. The delegation to Amman will be accompanied by an economic mission headed by WKO Vice President Richard Schenz. The economic mission of the WKO is the response of an invitation issued some time ago by the President of the Chamber of Commerce of the Kingdom.

March 8, 2018

Mainland Chinese Billionaire Guo Guangchang to Take Over Austrian Asset Wolford AG

Shanghai based Fosun Group through its Hong Kong (Central) vehicle Fosun Industrial Holdings Limited (Fosun) has taken over control of one of Austria's last remaining lingerie assets. According to Wolford, its new strategic core shareholder has agreed to pay at least €36M for a 50.87% majority stake in Wolford AG. Wolford has been struggling with management problems for some time. It also has been loss making for several years. Fosun Industrial Holdings Limited, a subsidiary of Fosun International Limited (British Virgin Islands) is an investment holding company with interests in asset management and entertainment services. Fosun wants full control of the lingerie maker. Upon the closing of the share purchase agreement Fosun intends to launch a takeover offer to the remaining shareholders. Fosun was co-founded in 1992 by Fudan graduate Guo Guangchang who meanwhile became the 34th richest person in China with a net worth of €7 billion.

March 3, 2018

Trevor Traina Looks Forward to Become the United States Ambassador to Austria

Today Mr. Trevor Traina testified before the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee Nomination Hearing. If confirmed, Mr. Traina is to become the next Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to Austria. Traina: I am humbled to be President Trumps nominee to be the United States Ambassador to Austria. If confirmed, his grandmother, who just celebrated her hundredth birthday and who is the widow of his late grandfather Wiley T. Buchanan Jr. (who also served as U.S. ambassador to Austria), would have the confusing honor of being the wife and the grandmother of the Ambassador to Austria.

March 1, 2018

Chancellor Kurz Visits President Putin: "The situation in Syria is dramatic"

Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz traveled to Moscow to meet Vladimir Putin. The focus of the trip was a working meeting with the Russian President, with whom Kurz discussed, among other things, the bilateral relations of both countries, the relationship between Russia and the EU, the Ukraine conflict and the current situation in Syria.

February 28, 2018

Austrian Government Presents Double Budget 2018/19: EU Requirements Are Met - 2019 Balanced Budget

The new Austrian government is planning a zero deficit for next year, Chancellor Sebastian Kurz (ÖVP) and Vice-Chancellor Heinz-Christian Strache (FPÖ) have announced. The planned reduction in corporation tax could be of interest to foreign investors and companies.

February 28, 2018

Bawag Pays €110M for Separation from Austrian Post

Bawag presents its preliminary figures for 2017. The net profit will amount to 466.6 million euros (-1.4 percent). Due to profits, there will be dividend payments to shareholders. The long-term distribution partnership with Austrian Post is to be terminated.

February 28, 2018

Expansion of Airport City of Vienna International Airport Will Create More than 1,000 New Jobs

Vienna International Airport (Flughafen Wien AG) reports an improvement in the earnings outlook and projected traffic results for 2018. Net profit for the period before non-controlling interests is up to at least EUR 140 million, passenger growth of over 7% in the group and 5% at Vienna International Airport. The management board will propose to the Annual General Meeting that an increased dividend of EUR 0.68 per share should be distributed. Also, the expansion of the Airport City will create more than 1,000 new jobs. The Flughafen Wien Group, including its strategic foreign investments in Malta and Kosice Airports, anticipates passenger growth of more than 7% in 2018.

February 27, 2018

Austrian Post - Revenue Increase of 2.3% for 2017 Expected

Austrian Post will publish the final results for the 2017 financial year on March 15, 2018. According to preliminary figures Austrian Post will present a slight revenue increase of 2.3% to EUR 1,939m compared to EUR 1,896m in the previous year. The Parcel & Logistics Division of Austrian Post reflects the developments in e-commerce. According to a market report by Branchenradar, Austrian Post expanded in the competitive parcel market. Its overall market share rose from 45% to 47% based on handling 97 million parcels in 2017 compared to 81 million parcels in 2016. Revenue increased by a 17.7% to EUR 496m in 2017 after EUR 421m in 2016. However, the Mail & Branch Network Division reported a 2.1% decline in revenue in 2017 (EUR 1,448m in 2017 after EUR 1,479m in 2016). Also in the mail business revenue decreased. This was primarily caused by the ongoing electronic substitution of letters.

February 27, 2018

AMAG Exceeds EUR 1 Billion Revenue Level for First Time in Its History

AMAG Austria Metall AG continued on its growth track in the 2017 financial year, achieving its best operating result historically (Revenue: +14 % to EUR 1,036.2 million; EBITDA: +15 % to EUR 164.5 million) and reaching a milestone for further organic growth with the commissioning of its new cold rolling mill and further finishing plants. Net income after taxes amounted to EUR 63.2 million (+36 %).

February 27, 2018

ams Launches EUR 600 Million Convertible Bond Placement

With the consent of the supervisory board, the management board of AMS has resolved to launch a private placement of senior unsecured zero-coupon convertible bonds due in 2025, in an aggregate nominal amount of EUR 600 million and a denomination of EUR 200,000 each. The Bonds are initially convertible into 4.41 million new ordinary no par value bearer shares from the Company's conditional capital, representing approximately 5.2% of the current outstanding share capital of ams. Subscription rights of existing shareholders of ams to subscribe to the Bonds have been excluded. The Bonds will not bear interest.

February 26, 2018

Egger Holzwerkstoffe to Issue Subordinated Bond

Egger Holzwerkstoffe intends to issue a deeply subordinated bond with perpetual maturity and an early redemption option for the issuer after five years (hybrid bond). UniCredit Bank AG has been mandated as Sole Structuring Advisor and Sole Bookrunner. Raiffeisen Bank International AG acts as co-lead manager.

February 26, 2018

Lenzing AG - Dividend Remains Constant, Special Dividend Higher

The Management Board of Lenzing AG has resolved to propose distribution of an unchanged basic and higher special dividend for 2017 financial year on the basis of its preliminary business results which have not yet been subject to a final audit. The dividend of EUR 3.00 per share is planned to remain constant, whereas the special dividend should be increased from EUR 1.20 to EUR 2.00 per share due to Lenzing's performance in the 2017 financial year.

February 26, 2018

KTM to Manufacture Motorcycles in China

The Upper Austrian motorcycle manufacturer KTM plans to produce motorcycles in China from 2020/21 as well. Currently KTM manufactures at the company headquarters in Upper Austria (Mattighofen), as well as together with the partner Bajaj in India (Pune).

February 23, 2018

How do Russian Politicians and Oligarchs Withdraw their Money from Austria?

The Russian money nobility has begun to repatriate large amounts of its western-hoarded money back to Russia in order to deprive it of access by Western authorities. The countries of origin are above all Switzerland, but also Austria and Great Britain. Sberbank, Russia's largest and state-owned bank, speaks of an atypically high capital inflow to Russia. Within a few weeks, a tripling of such repatriation transactions took place compared to the same period of the previous year. The sum is hundreds of millions of dollars. The average transfer amount has increased within a year by 50% to 3 million dollars. This meets with the Kremlin's desire to repatriate Russian assets.

February 22, 2018

Austria's Economic Upturn will Continue in the First Half of 2018

The Austrian National Bank expects GDP growth of 0.8 percent for the first two quarters compared to the previous quarter. The economic momentum is unbroken.

February 22, 2018

OMV Group Reports Operating Result of EUR 688 Mln in 2017

OMV AG is reporting group results for 2017. The operating result increased by 67% to EUR 688 mn. Net income attributable to stockholders amounted to EUR 367 mn. Data includes latest two acquisitions of a 24.99% share in the Yuzhno Russkoye natural gas field located in Western Siberia (see picture) and the purchase of 40% in SMATRICS, Austria’s complete provider for all services related to electro - mobility. See OMV Group Report January – December and Q4 2017 including condensed consolidated financial statements as of December 31, 2017 and Investor Relations Video below.

February 21, 2018

Strabag counting on continued positive development in 2018 thanks to record order backlog

Strabag today announced its first figures for the 2017 financial year and issued an outlook for 2018. "We closed the year with a record output volume and are going into the new one with a record order backlog. The signs are pointing to unchanged strong demand in nearly all of our core markets," says CEO Thomas Birtel.

February 15, 2018

Telekom Austria AG / Results for the Full Year 2017

Telekom Austria Group announces its results for fourth quarter and full year 2017, ending 31 December 2017. Group total revenues rose by 3.0% on a proforma basis (reported: +4.1%), EBITDA increased by 2.0% (rep.: +3.2%). Revenue increase driven by growth in fixed-line service revenues and equipment revenues, while mobile service revenues were lower due to roaming; the revenue increase was driven by all markets except for the Republic of Macedonia.

February 13, 2018

Rosenbauer: Preliminary Figures 2017

Rosenbauer is reporting EBIT of EUR 25.6 million for the 2017 financial year (2016: EUR 47.0 million). In particular, the decline in the Group's earnings is due to the decreased delivery volume in 2017 as a result of the low price of oil and ongoing political conflicts. This led to weak capacity utilization in some production areas.

February 13, 2018

Record Year 2017: Flughafen Wien Group Handles 30.9 Million Passengers (+6.9%), Surpassing Threshold of 30 Million for the First Time

In spite of developments at Air Berlin and NIKI, 2017 will go down in airport history as a record year. The Flughafen Wien Group reported a passenger volume of over 30 million for the very first time in its history, and Vienna Airport site also exceeded the threshold of 24 million passengers for the first time.

January 16, 2018

Schoeller Bleckmann Oilfield Preliminary Result for 2017

The 2017 financial year of Schoeller-Bleckmann Oilfield Equipment AG (SBO), listed on the ATX market of the Vienna Stock Exchange, was characterised by the upswing seen in North America. The strategic expansion of the Well Completion business the year before therefore turned out to be the perfect choice to make. Against the continued weak market environment internationally, SBO closed financial year 2017 on a clearly positive operating result.

January 16, 2018

FACC Continues to Climb in the Third Quarter 2017/18

Revenues for the first nine months of 2017/18 amount to EUR 564.0 million (comparative period 2016/17: EUR 518.6 million). The increase of 8.8% is attributable to a further significant increase in product sales of 11.4% to EUR 527.8 million.

January 16, 2018

Agrana’s first three quarters significantly ahead of one year earlier

In the first three quarters of the 2017|18 financial year, Agrana Beteiligungs-AG achieved slight year-on-year growth of 2.2% in Group revenue to EUR 2,010.6 million (Q1-Q3 prior year: EUR 1,967.5 million).

January 11, 2018

Telekom Austria AG / A1 Telekom Austria Group announces redemption of Hybrid bond 2013

The A1 Telekom Austria Group (VSE: TKA, OTC US: TKAGY) announces that the Management Board of Telekom Austria AG adopted a resolution today to call and redeem the EUR 600 mn hybrid bond issued by Telekom Austria AG in 2013 (ISIN XS0877720986) (the 'Hybrid Bonds').

January 5, 2018

C-Quadrat: Unexpected Good Performance in December

Due to the positive performance of several investment funds managed by asset management companies of the C-Quadrat Group, which reached new price highs, in December 2017 the C-Quadrat Group realized additional revenue from performance-related remuneration.

January 5, 2018

Moody's Lifts Outlook for Austrian Banks

Moody's lifts outlook for Austrian banks on positive, because the economic recovery in Austria makes it possible to improve the outlook for domestic banks.

August 24, 2017

Salzburger Festspiele Generates EUR 215 Million Added Value per Year

The president of the Salzburg Festival (Salzburger Festspiele), Helga Rabl-Stadler, presented a new study proving the financial significance of the event. According to the study the festival generates added value of EUR 215 million per year in the whole country.

August 22, 2016

Social Progress Index: Austria Ranked 13th

Austria has been ranked 13th by NGO Social Progress Imperative, in its Social Progress Index ranking. It precedes Japan and Germany and scored many points thanks to renewable energy projects. However, the state reveals shortages with respect to education, tolerance and equal opportunities. Nordic states, such as Finland, Canada and Denmark lead the index.

July 25, 2016

Indian Ministry of Railways Discusses India-Austria Railway Cooperations

The Indian Minister of Railways, Shri Suresh Prabhu paid a visit to Austria. In an event organized by the Chamber of Commerce H.E. Mr. Prabhu met with CEOs and Austrian Railway Companies to discuss possible further India-Austria cooperations in the field of railways technology.

July 21, 2016

New "Open Austria Initiative" Supposed to Open Doors to Silicon Valley

Foreign Ministry and Austrian Economic Chamber open joint office in California to support Austrian companies and pave their way for success in Silicon Valley.

July 14, 2016

Erste Group Expects Q2 Net Profit of about EUR 560 Million

Erste Group expects to post net profit of approx. EUR 560 million in Q2 16, raises guidance for 2016 to ROTE >12% (up from 10-11%).

July 14, 2016

Best Gaming Technology Acquired by Rival Playtech

Vienna-based maker of software for self-service betting terminals Best Gaming Technology (BGT) has been acquired by UK gambling software group Playtech for €138m. Playtech holds the option to purchase the remaining shares for up to €55m from Armin Sageder, the company’s founder and chief executive.

July 14, 2016

OSCE: "Reliable, Affordable and Sustainable Energy Supplies are Prerequisite for Stability and Security"

Energy experts from the OSCE Mediterranean Partners for Co-operation, representing both government institutions and private sector companies, will begin a week-long field study of sustainable energy in Austria and Germany.

July 12, 2016

Western Balkans Countries Discussed Investment, Jobs and Integration in Vienna

The World Bank and the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies (wiiw) held a high-level policy dialogue on ‘Investment, Jobs and Integration’ last week. Ministers and senior officials from the Western Balkans region as well as policy experts from international organisations and the business community gathered to discuss the challenges the region is currently facing, in particular the high unemployment rate, low international competitiveness, and lack of modern infrastructure.

July 8, 2016