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CORPORATE BRIEFS

Bučina hits red for 1-3Q 98

Bučina Zvolen, the largest wood processor in Slovakia, reported a non-consolidated loss of 8.41 million Sk ($230,000) nine months into 1998. Q3 operating profit of 29.5 million Sk ($820,000) was swallowed up by financial costs, as a consequence of which the company showed a loss from financial operations of 36.98 million Sk ($1.02 million).

According to Bučina Economic Director Robert Varac, the firm failed to meet its 1998 goals since a revitalization programme for the building and furniture industries, declared by the former Government one year ago, never materialised. Bučina's only profits come from exports of its production, and its biggest foreign customers are in Germany, Switzerland, Austria, the Netherlands, Italy and France.

As of September 30, Bučina had produced goods worth 881.5 million Sk ($24.5 million), while sales of its own products and services came to almost 857.48 million Sk. The company produced added value amounting to 251.54 million Sk. Against the company's volume of total assets (2.52 billion Sk, or $70 million), debt sits at an acceptable level of 451.1 million Sk, for a debt/assets ratio of 17.93%.

Bučina registers bank borrowings in the volume of 54.14 million Sk. At shareholder's equity of 2.06 billion Sk, its debt/equity ratio is 2.6%. Bučina's Q3 short-term debts totaled 246.96 million Sk, while its short-term claims were 147.56 million Sk. Because of a bond issue, the company's long-term debts grew to 150 million Sk at the end of this September.

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