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BUSINESS

Big surge in new business startups

The number of new businesses in Sweden increased 16.4 percent in the first five months of 2010, compared to the same period last year, new statistics have revealed.

For the first time in years, the number of new businesses grew in all of Sweden’s counties, according to statistics compiled by business software company Visma Spcs from the Companies Registration Office (Bolagsverket).

“It is gratifying that the number of new businesses is increasing so much,” said Visma Spcs CEO Rolf Dahlberg. “This is proof of the positive developments that began last fall. The figures are even a bit better than the forecast we made for the full year. That is exactly what the country needs.”

In May alone, the increase was 46.9 percent compared with the same period last year. The bulk of the increase came from newly registered limited companies (aktiebolag). Last month, 98.2 percent more new companies were registered than in May 2009.

The reduced requirements for capital investment in companies starting on April 1st could be part of the reason behind the increase. For the first time in years, all counties reported a positive development in new businesses.

However, the regional differences are large. In May, the growth of new businesses in Jämtland was highest, more than doubling compared with last year, followed by an 88.4 percent increase in Södermanland and 82.9 percent rise in Västmanland.

In all of Sweden, 6,030 new businesses were established, mostly limited liability companies, sole proprietorships, partnerships or limited partnerships. That compares with 4,104 in May 2009.

Since January, 27,093 new companies have registered with Bolagsverket, compared with 23,283 in the same period last year.

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ABB

Swedish engineering giant ABB to quit Russia over Ukraine

Swedish-Swiss engineering giant ABB said on Thursday it will quit Russia as a result of the war in Ukraine and the related international sanctions against Moscow.

Swedish engineering giant ABB to quit Russia over Ukraine

Russia accounts for only one or two percent of ABB’s overall annual turnover and the decision to pull out will have an estimated financial impact in the second quarter of around $57 million, the group calculated.

“ABB has decided to exit the Russian market due to the ongoing war in Ukraine and impact of related international sanctions,” the group said in a statement.

Russia accounts for only one or two percent of ABB’s overall annual sales and the decision to pull out will have an estimated financial impact in the second quarter of around $57 million, the group calculated.

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A large number of major western companies have pulled out of Russia since Moscow invaded its pro-Western neighbour on February 24.

“When the war broke out, ABB stopped taking new orders in Russia,” the group said.

At the same time, it said it continued to fulfill “a small number of existing contractual obligations with local customers, in compliance with applicable sanctions.”

Most of ABB’s dedicated Russian workforce has been on leave since March “and the company will do its best to support them as it realigns its operations in a controlled manner,” it said.

ABB has about 750 people in Russia and two production sites in the country located in the Moscow region and Lipetsk, as well as several service centres.

Separately, the group said that its net profit fell by 50 percent to $379 million in the second quarter, largely as a result of one-off charges, but also the cost of withdrawing from Russia.

Sales, on the other hand, grew by six percent to $7.2 billion in the period from April to June, ABB said.

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