Electrolux to be split up

Electrolux is to spin off its Outdoor Products business, leaving it with White Goods and Vacuum-cleaners. It is also launching a cost-cutting programme that could affect production in Sweden. There is a risk that factories in Motala, Mariestad, and Torsvik could be closed down, and possibly also some in the USA and Australia.

This will be the final dismantling of the global white goods giant built up during the seventies and eighties. Getinge, Autoliv, Ballingslöv and Dometic have all been divested since Electrolux’s heyday.

The spin-off will probably be under the Husqvarna name, and then floated on the stock market. The company is a world leader in lawnmowers and chainsaws with an annual turnover of SKr 27 billion.

GE into the Nordic region

General Electric expects to make more acquisitions on the Nordic market, according to Nani Beccali-Falco, number two at the world’s largest listed company. GE already has 4,800 employees in its Nordic health products business alone. Its largest business is GE Capital, which had a turnover of SKr 1,100 billion last year.

Nordea’s fish farm in trouble

Norwegian fish farming company PanFish, whose largest shareholder is Nordea, is still making heavy losses and looking for an injection of more capital. Nordea has lost billions on its lending to the Norwegian fish farming industry in recent years, with PanFish one of the major sources of loss. Nordea owns 45 % of PanFish, which lost NKr 232 million last year.

Metro loss – NY to blame

Free morning newspaper Metro’s sales rose by almost 49 per cent last year to just over SKr 2.1 billion. The result was pulled down by the large number of new launches, including papers in Lisbon, Rotterdam and especially New York. The result after financial net was a loss of SKr 93 million. Turnover in Sweden rose by 72 per cent to SKr 650 million.

Poor January for H&M

H&M’s sales in January rose by 5%, a very low figure by H&M’s standards. It was due to calendaric effects, according to the company, including one less Sunday than in January 2004, and the fact that New Year’s Day fell on a Saturday, which means a whole day of lost business.

Sources: Dagens Nyheter, Svenska Dagbladet, Dagens Industri


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