See below main business and financial news from the previous week:

BRIDGESTONE INAUGURATES EUR 28M UPGRADE, EXPANSION

Japanese tyre maker Bridgestone inaugurated a 9.2 billion forint (EUR 28m) technology upgrade and capacity expansion at its plant in Tatabánya, north-western Hungary. The investment will raise output from an annual 5 million to 7.2 million units by 2020, and a 10,000sqm warehouse will boost storage capacity at the base by 180,000 to 600,000 tyres.

ALDI TO SET UP SECOND INTERNATIONAL IT CENTRE IN HUNGARY

ALDI International IT Services, which provides IT support for more than 3,800 Aldi Sud stores in Europe, announced plans to invest 1.3 billion forints in a service centre in Pecs, in southern Hungary, its second in the country. The centre will operate with a staff of 70. Read more HERE.

BANK OF CHINA RAISES MVM CREDIT LINE TO EUR 350 M

The state-owned Hungarian Electricity Works (MVM) signed a contract in Budapest on raising its credit line from Bank of China from 250 million euros to 350 million euros. The term of the five-year credit line was also extended by two years, until 2026. MVM chairman-CEO György Kóbor said the company needs the bigger credit line to expand its integrated services.

BREMAS HUNGARY INAUGURATES EUR 5 M PLANT

The Hungarian unit of Italian-owned electric switch manufacturer Bremas inaugurated a 5 million euro plant in Balassagyarmat, in northern Hungary. Bremas Hungary currently employs 80 staff but plans to add 40 to headcount in the next two years.

HIGHER SALES VOLUME, NARROWER FINANCIAL LOSS LIFT PANNERGY PROFIT

Higher sales volume and a smaller financial loss boosted listed alternative energy company Pannergy’s first-half after-tax net income to 591 million forints from 29 millin forints in the base period, an earnings report showed. Revenue rose by 30 percent to 3.12 billion forints as colder temperatures lifted heat sales. A 162 million forint financial loss, just over one-third of the 439 million forint loss in the base period, also lifted the bottom line.

HIVENTURES LAUNCHES HUF 31 BN VENTURE CAPITAL UNIT FOR OVERLOOKED SMES

Hiventures, the venture capital fund manager of the Hungarian Development Bank (MFB), announced the creation of a unit with 31 billion forints in capital that will focus on Hungarian SMEs, rather than startups. The unit will target companies facing generational change in management, family companies wanting to bring in outside leadership, companies looking to expand their activities with domestic or foreign acquisitions or those wanting to invest abroad.

ALTEO RELEASES H1 EARNINGS, ANNOUNCES PLANNED BOND ISSUE

First-half consolidated after-tax profit of listed alternative energy company ALTEO increased by an annual 37 percent to 483 million forints, lifted by higher revenue, an earnings report showed. ALTEO also announced plans to issue up to 9.3 billion forints of corporate bonds in the framework of the National Bank of Hungary’s Bond Funding for Growth Scheme (BGS).

NBH URGES MORE TRANSPARENCY FOR COMPOSITE COST OF BORROWING INDICATOR

The National Bank of Hungary (NBH) outlined measures it is taking to reduce retail borrowers’ exposure to interest rate risk as well as make lenders’ communication of such risk more transparent in an annual report on consumer protection practices. The central bank and financial market watchdog complained that the composite cost of borrowing indicator for households that is used uniformly across the European Union fails to reflect interest rate risk over the whole maturity of the loan and said it is pressing for changes to the method for calculating the indicator that supports a more transparent presentation of interest rate risk.

Budapest to become Polish Airlines LOT’s 2nd major base, says Hungarian FM in Krynica

Budapest is set to serve as the second major base of Polish airline company LOT, the Hungarian foreign minister said on the sidelines of an international economic forum in south Poland’s Krynica. Read more HERE.

BUSINESS PARTNERS TAKE OVER PRODUCTION OF SZARVASI BRAND COFFEE PERCOLATORS

Hungarian-owned Szarvasi Háztartásigép said it would partner with Deerplast to take over the production and sale of Szarvasi brand coffee percolators from troubled Szarvasi Vas-Fémipari which went under liquidation in August. Szarvasi Vas-Fémipari, whose coffee percolators are a fixture in Hungarian kitchens, fell on hard times after it lost a contract to produce lamps for home furnishings giant IKEA.

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