Language:
Українська
Русский
Français
Deutsch
Español
Polski
Türkçe

Privatization receipts will increase fourfold this, reaching $450 million,

said Kyrylo Tymoshenko, the Deputy Chief of Presidential staff, predicted yesterday at a government forum “Ukraine 30. Economy Without Oligarchs.” Starting prices for three big government corporation sales are: United Mining and Chemical Company, the titanium producer: $138 million; Kyiv’s Bolshevik plant: $50 million; and Kyiv’s President Hotel: $12 million.

Dutch company Bontrup plans to invest €50 million in ‘green’ energy project in the Chornobyl exclusion zone

, the Economy Ministry has report. Over the investment cycle the project could grow to €1.5 billion, providing jobs for 10,000 workers, the Ministry said. With projects in 25 countries, Amsterdam-based Bontrup says of its mission: “We innovate with nature to create new opportunities for sustainable infrastructures, offshore developments, logistics and agricultural production.”

South Korea’s Caris plans to build a $60 million plant in Stryi, Lviv region to manufacture highway guardrails from plastic waste

, reports the Economy Ministry. The factory would employ 900 workers, and would benefit from the Zelenskiy Administration’s ‘Big Construction’ which includes a major highway safety component. Yu Cheol, the principal investor, reviewed the investment in a meeting in Kyiv on Friday with Stryi Mayor Oleg Kanivets and Deputy Economy Minister Iryna Novikova.

President Zelenskiy said that two large state companies – power producer Centrenergo and chemicals producer Odesa Port Plant – will be auctioned online auction in the coming months

. “Centrenergo is completely ready,” he told reporters, speaking of a company that has 23 power plants across the country. Centrenergo has an installed capacity of 7,690 MW – equivalent to half the capacity of all renewable power producers in Ukraine.

 Returning to the rhetoric of two years ago,

 Zelenskiy said: “My will is that the state should get rid of everything as much as possible. I agree with the position of the Europeans and the United States that the state is not the coolest manager.” Next in line, he said, are two Kyiv hotels – the Presidential and the Ukraine. He said: “Now I really want the President Hotel to be privatized.”

Japanese and Australian companies dominate among 13 foreign companies planning to bid this summer for the United Mining and Chemical Company.

 The starting price is $140 million for the company, Europe’s largest producer of titanium. Writing in Focus, financial journalist Kirill Sazanov compares this privatization to the sale of Krivorozhstal to ArcelorMittal back in 2005. He writes the titanium miner “is also the largest enterprise in its profile in Europe, which makes it of serious interest to foreign investors.”

This summer, Ukrzaliznytsia plans to lease out 41,000 square meters of commercial space in the nation’s 24 busiest passenger stations

, Ivan Yuryk, acting CEO of the state railroad, told reporters yesterday at a government development forum. These leases could bring in $4 million a year to the money-losing railroad. At the end of the summer, UZ will start renting out space at the system’s remaining 84 passenger stations. Listing possible tenants who could bid through ProZorro Sale, Yuryk said: “Food courts, pharmacies, shops, recreation areas, shops that sell big brands, brand stores of large chains and manufacturers, bank branches,

In a second step, the nation’s 11 busiest stations are being prepared for long-term lease under concession contracts with strategic investors

. Already six foreign and domestic investors have shown interest in the concessions, scheduled to start in 2023. “What do we see at the exit?” asked Yuryk. “Citizens and guests of our country, arriving at the station, can eat in famous brands of food courts, drink fragrant drinks in cafes, buy souvenirs, visit branded stores of large chains and manufacturers, use the services of banks, please loved ones with fresh flowers from stores, and have fun in the areas for

Ukrainians received about $400 million in profit from bitcoin investments, ranking 10th highest in the world,

according to the Digital Transformation Ministry, citing a study by Chainanalysis. The top three were: US – $4.1 billion; China – $1.1 billion; and Japan – $900 million. Six months ago, the Rada approved on first reading a bill, ‘On Virtual Assets,’ which would provide legislative regulation of a market for crypto-assets. Oleksandr Bornyakov, deputy minister of Digital Transformation, said: “Citizens and crypto companies will be able to officially work and receive income from operations with new assets. The incomes

Ukravtodor, the state highway agency, plans to issue its first dollar Eurobonds under a sovereign guarantee

, reports Interfax-Ukraine.  Local and international banks including JP Morgan, Dragon Capital and Ukreximbank are arranging the placement. Calls to investors start today for the bonds, which have tenure of 6.25 years. Last month, the Cabinet of Ministers approved state guarantees for Ukravtodor to issue UAH 10 billion in bonds, the equivalent of $370 million.

The successful online auction of Lviv Correctional Colony № 48 is to be the first privatization of 35 shuttered prisons put up for sale in a program started this year.

 Two prison sales – one in Odesa and one in Irpin, a northern suburb of Kyiv – failed due to a lack of bidders. Justice Minister Denys Mayluska hopes the Lviv sale will generate investor interest. A separate piece of the Lviv prison colony was sold last week for $1.1 million – almost nine times the starting price. Under the program, 30% of sales proceeds go to the state budget and 70% toward rebuilding existing prisons.

The Finance Ministry’s weekly auction raised $700 million in hryvnia and equivalent, 20% more than last week’s auction

. Hryvnia rates were virtually unchanged Tuesday: 6 months – 9%; 14 months – 11.2%; 18 months – 11.3%; 2-year – 12.05%; and 3-year – 12.3% per annum. The novelty was a 5-year bond, which settled at 12.59%. One-year dollar denominated bonds sold for 3.7%, garnering $182 million, the Ministry reports on Facebook.

International buyers are back in the market,

ICU has reported. “Last week foreign investors purchased UAH 2bn [$74 million] of new bills in addition to reinvesting funds they received from redemptions,” the investment group wrote of last week’s auction. Taras Kotovych, Senior Financial Analyst for ICU has calculated that international investors recently bought UAH 3-4 billion, an inflow that strengthened the exchange rate. Yesterday, one dollar was fetching UAH 27.08.

Two years after Ukraine started to cooperate with Clearstream, external investment in government bonds has doubled,

the share of public debt in national currency has increased to 39%, and 5-year bonds have won acceptance, the Finance Ministry reports. In a press conference last week with representatives of the Luxembourg-based international depository, Ministry officials said external investors now hold UAH 98.3 billion, or $3.6 billion, in Ukraine government bonds.

16 business centers will open in Kyiv, with a total area of 376,000 square meters by the end of next year

, Radomyr Tsurkan, managing partner of CBRE Ukraine, predicted last week in an interview with Interfax-Ukraine. “The collapse of the offices that scared everyone at the start of the pandemic did not take place,” he said. “According to a study conducted by CBRE in 2020, 73% of those surveyed want to return to the office and have a hybrid work format.” This year, 12 business centers with a total area of 207,000 square meters are to open in Kyiv.

President Zelenskiy plans to spend $9 billion during the three remaining years of his term to rebuild and repair 43,000 km of national roads and 119,000 km of local roads

, reports the Finance Ministry. The expenditure in critical infrastructure is included in the Budget Declaration for 2022-2024, which was approved last week by the Cabinet of Ministers. Denis Ulyutin, Deputy Finance Minister, said: “Thanks to this, the number of road accidents should be reduced by about 7%.”

To speed construction of Kyiv’s 150 km Bypass Road, the Rada passed a bill exempting the $3.2 billion project from ProZorro procurement and public tenders

, Max Nefyodov, a Kyiv City Councilman and former deputy Economy Minister, charges in an Atlantic Council blog. Under the headline “Ukraine’s post-2014 public procurement progress is under threat,” Neyodov argues: “This recently adopted amendment sets an awful precedent that could pave the way for further exemptions of other major construction projects from Ukraine’s public procurement laws and regulations.”

Defending the measure,

Serhiy Bykov writes on Facebook: “Current procurement rules close the opportunities for international players to enter the market, which can immediately bring money.” The new, streamlined approach, he said is “the international format of EPC + F contracts” or engineering, procurement, construction + financing. So far, non-binding memorandums have been signed with two foreign construction giants with access to international financing – Bechtel of the US and Poly Changda Engineering Co. of China.

Investing in a timber industry for future generations, President Zelenskiy announced yesterday at a national ecology forum a goal to plant 1 billion trees over the three years remaining in his term

. Recently, Ukrainians carried out a national campaign, planting 1 million trees in 24 hours. To plant 1 billion trees, it would be necessary to plant 1 million trees every day for three years. On a more realistic note, President Zelenskiy signed into law yesterday a ban on conventional plastic bags, effective next Jan. 1. Stores are to switch to biodegradable bags.

Metinvest, Ukraine’s largest private company saw its EBITDA increase almost four times in the first quarter yoy, to nearly $1.5 billion

. Rising high iron and steel prices, saw revenues in the vertically integrated steel company increase by 43% yoy, to $3.6 billion. In a sign that the world recovery is spreading beyond China, sales to Europe increased by 10% yoy to 1.48 million tons. Prices continued to rise in March, compared to February: +11% for pig iron; +9% for slabs and flat products; +1% for billets.

The EU and its European Investment Bank are investing €460 million to repair damaged infrastructure in Donetsk and Luhansk,

 reports Jean-Erik de Zagon, the bank’s resident representation in Ukraine. A first tranche of €120 million will be used to repair 168 buildings – largely schools, kindergartens, libraries, culture houses, medical clinics and apartment buildings for internally displaced people. Building on the success of this ‘Ukraine Early Recovery Program,’ the EU and Bank recently agreed to a second €340 million loan, largely targeting Donetsk and Luhansk.

In Donetsk, the state highway agency is rebuilding 12 bridges and the access road to the front line city of Avdiivka.

In a multi-year project, Ukravtodor is rebuilding this summer the 625 km stretch of the M-14 between Odesa and Mariupol. This east-west road links the ports of the Azov and Black Seas, giving exporters increased flexibility if Russia closes the Azov to Ukraine-bound cargo ships.

DTEK’s Tiligulska wind power project, with a capacity of 126 MW, is under construction this summer and should produce power next year

, DTEK reports. Located in southwest Mykolaiv, the project is largely financed with money from a green Eurobond that DTEK issued in the fall of 2019. If the government catches up with overdue payments to wind and solar producers, DTEK could proceed with plans to increase the Tiligulska plant 4.5 times, to 564 MW, for a total of $640 million, Maris Kunickis, CEO of DTEK Renewables, said in March 2021.

Apartment prices in Kyiv could nearly double – to $2,000 per square meter — by the end of 2023,

 predicts Serhiy Pylypenko, general director of Kovalska construction and construction materials company. Driving prices up 15-20% this year will be the rising cost of building materials, he told the Confederation of Builders conference, “Post-Quarantine Development” Wednesday in Kyiv. The world runup in iron and steel prices are pushing local prices up by 30-40%, he said.

Budhouse Group, one of Ukraine’s largest developers, plans to invest €314 million in three projects over the next three years,

 Anatoliy Shkribliak, company founder and shareholder, tells Interfax-Ukraine. In Odesa, the group is spending €12 million to complete work on Yessa shopping and entertainment center, aiming for opening in the fall of 2022. In Zaporizhia, Budhouse starts work this summer on Khortitsa Mall, an €82 million shopping center project on a former industrial site on a major highway. After completing these two projects, Budhouse is to start an €220 million project on Kyiv’s Peremoha Avenue, near Zlatoustivska St. Called Hartz

To promote private investment in Ukraine’s sea ports, the Ukrainian Sea Ports Authority plans to focus on dredging and allow companies build and maintain berths through concessions.

 With each berth costing $20-50 million to build, the state-owned authority does not have the capital to meet demand, Andriy Gaydutsky, chair of the Authority’s supervisory board, told the Ukrainian Ports Forum 2021 in Odesa yesterday.

Dragon Capital is expanding its media holdings acquiring

 Ukrainska Pravda, the 21-year-old news site. Dragon already owns NV, a leading business news site. “Same as with our existing media project, NV, we will maintain the practice of non-interference by the owner into Ukrainska Pravda’s editorial policy,” Tomas Fiala, Dragon’s CEO, said in a press release. The company said: “Dragon Capital sees this investment as another step towards supporting free media and freedom of speech in Ukraine, being also confident that digital media have great prospects as a business.”

Dragon increased its Kyiv warehouse holdings by 50% last week

by buying a 100,208 square meter office and logistics complex in Bilogorogoda, six km from the Kyiv ring road, between the Odesa and Zhytomyr highways. With the purchase of Amtel Logistics Complex, Dragon’s portfolio of 11 warehouses totals 294,000 square meters on the right bank of Kyiv and 391,000 square meters across Ukraine, the company has reported. Dragon also is building the first stages of two industrial parks – 25,500 square meters on the E40 in Kyiv; 14,500 square meters

Two regional entrepreneurs – Andriy Stavnitser, co-owner of the TiS port in Yuzhny, and Yuriy Fylyuk, who is recycling a massive Soviet-era gas meter factory in Ivano-Frankivsk

 – are profiled by Melinda Haring in a National Interest story headlined: “Ukraine’s Future in Being Made Outside Kyiv.” Her conclusion: “The big picture in Ukraine, viewed solely from Kyiv, often looks downright hopeless, but seen from outside the metropolis, there’s good reason to be optimistic about its future.”

By turning Kyiv’s central rail station over to private operators through a concession agreement, the station could attract $100 million in investment,

Vladyslav Krikliy said in an interview given to the Kyiv Post before he stepped down last week as Infrastructure Minister. Looking at station candidates for concessions — Kyiv, Kharkiv, Dnipro, Mykolaiv, Vinnytsia, Khmelnitsky, and Chop – Krikliy said his turnaround model is Vienna’s new Main Station. With a 20,000-square-meter shopping center below the tracks, Wien Hauptbahnhof on some days attracts more people to shop and dine than to travel.

The government hopes to increase foreign investment from $420 million last year, to $3 billion this year, to $15 billion by 2025,

according to the National Economic Strategy 2030 posted last week on the government’s website. Other goals for 2030 are: double the economy; triple exports to $150 billion; nearly triple labor productivity; cut in half the state share in the banking system; cut the debt-to-GDP ratio to 30-40%; and increase the share of small and medium-sized businesses of exports to 40%.

China’s Ambassador to Ukraine Fan Xianrong said that Chinese companies should invest in farming and processing food in Ukraine,

 Xinhua reports from an online forum held Tuesday: “Ukraine-China: The Future of Trade, Pulses, Grains, Oilseeds.” Fan notes that Ukraine’s food exports to China jumped 84% yoy, accounting for 45% of Ukraine’s total exports to China. Due to exports of food and metals, China is Ukraine’s largest trading partner.

Betting on strong Chinese demand for iron, Ferrexpo plans to spend $2 billion in capital investments to double its production of iron pellets by 2030

, reports Interfax-Ukraine. This year, the LSE-listed company is increasing production by 14%, to 12 million tons. A combination of strong Chinese demand and the Biden Administration’s planned infrastructure renewal plan have contributed to a doubling of world iron ore prices over the last year, to $208 a ton yesterday.

Interpipe, the steel pipe and Wheel Company, successfully returned to international capital markets last week,

completing the placement of $300 million worth of Eurobonds, maturing in 2026. The coupon rate is 8.375% per annum. Fadi Hraibi, director general of the company, said that the bonds, now listed on the Luxembourg Stock Exchange: “Over the past years, we have undergone an impressive business transformation and achieved financial stability.” The breakdown of the investor base is: US – 43%; UK – 26%; and EU – 26%. Fitch gives the bonds a ‘B’ rating.

The privatization drive is “irreversible,

” Kyrylo Tymoshenko, Deputy Presidential Chief of Staff, wrote on Facebook after President Zelenskiy chaired an inter-agency Zoom call Monday on the campaign. Over the next six weeks, there are to be 100 auctions of large-scale and small-scale state properties. He said: “It will, firstly, give new life to unprofitable property and, secondly, attract billions of investments.” Arguing that investors are taking notice, he said the average number of auction bidders has risen, from 3.67 in April 2020, to 4.57

Auctions of state or communal farm land will now take place openly through electronic auctions conducted on the Internet,

under a bill adopted yesterday by the Rada. “Anyone with a computer and Internet access will be able to take part in the auction,” (Interfax-Ukraine). “According to the ministry, the winners of the bidding will be those who offer the highest price per lot.” Plot sizes are limited to 20 hectares and buyers are limited to Ukrainians.

The Finance Ministry raised $513 million – in dollars, euros and hryvnia – in its weekly government bond auction yesterday.

The Ministry reported on Facebook that hryvnia bonds, annual yields were virtually unchanged: 3-month at 8.5%; 1-year at 11.2%; 18-month at 11.3%; and 2-year at 12.05%. Investors bought $63 million worth of 2-year dollar bonds at 3.9%. The majority of sales were 1-year euro bonds. Investors bought €238 million – two times more than in the total sold in the two previous euro auctions this year.

Kyiv’s Sikorsky airport is embarking on a 3-year, $100 million investment program to allow long haul jets to land by the end of 2023.

 The asphalt concrete runway is to be rebuilt with concrete and extended by 20%, to 2,770 meters. Often restricted by fog, the airport will receive a Category II ILS instrumental landing system. This will cut in half – to 350 meters – the visibility needed for pilots to land. With only one landing strip, Kyiv’s right bank airport will be closed for eight months in 2023 for runway reconstruction, Denis Kostrzhevsky, head of Master-Avia, the airport management company, told reporters

In its first year of operation in Ukraine, IKEA’s online store has received 2.5 million visitors and 148,000 online orders,

said Florian Melle, the head of IKEA in Ukraine (Interfax Ukraine). After the first physical store opened in Kyiv’s Blockbuster Mall on February 1st, the store received almost 400,000 visitors in one month. To deliver goods ordered online, IKEA opened three delivery points last year: Auchan Rive Gauche, Metro Cash & Carry, and Lavina Mall.

Bitcoin mining consumes as much electricity as Ukraine.

Bitcoin consumes almost 150 TeraWatt hours, according to the Bitcoin Electricity Consumption Index run Cambridge University’s Centre for Alternative Finance. By contrast, Ukraine generated 150 TeraWatt hours last year. Bitcoin dropped in value by 10% last week, after Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced that his car manufacturer will stop vehicle purchases using Bitcoin because of environmental concerns.

Ukrposhta has posted on ProZorro a tender for a partner in construction of a $50 million modern sorting center in Kyiv.

This will be the first such construction by the state postal operator in 42 years, Ukrposhta director Igor Smelyansky wrote on Facebook. Ukrposhta is undertaking a decade long logistic renovation program that will involve constructing six major sorting centers and 62 depots. To jumpstart the program, the EBRD is the lead finance partner, lending €63 million and the European Investment Bank is also lending €30 million to Ukrposhta.

In a €880 million deal, Alstom is to supply 130 electric locomotives to Ukrzaliznytsia

. France is financing 85% of the sale, through a €350 French Treasury loan and €400 million in loan guarantees from  BPI Assurance Export. French authorities raised the level of localization – value added inside Ukraine – from 15% in March, to 35% in the final contract. President Zelenskiy said after the signing: “Big money will be invested.”

“These projects will help improve the living conditions of Ukrainians,” Le Maire told Interfax-Ukraine.

“We are talking about drinking water, mobility, security and civil protection.” The Economy Minister noted that 160 French companies in Ukraine employ 30,000 people. Bertrand Barrier, President of the French-Ukrainian Chamber of Commerce, welcomed the agreements, saying they reflect growing French interest in investing in Ukraine.

Noting “Ukraine has some of Europe’s biggest lithium reserves, but doesn’t currently produce the light metal,” S&P stresses Ukraine’s proximity to the EU and the free trade pact.

 Referring to a presentation by Roman Opimakh, head of Ukraine’s State Geological Service, S&P reports: “Three projects are now set to being auctioned: Kruta Balka with lithium oxide content of 0.86%; Dobra with lithium oxide content of 1.38%; and Shevchenkivske, with lithium oxide content of 1.1%.”

Planning a series of license auctions for this year, Ukraine has prepared an Investment Atlas with approximately 30 critical mineral assets

, including titanium, lithium, nickel, cobalt, chrome, tantalum, niobium, beryllium, zirconium, scandium, molybdenum, gold and graphite, Opimakh said to S&P. Five gold blocks are to auctioned. “Ukraine has the potential to become a significant gold producer,” he said. For most metals, exploration licenses are for five years, and development licenses are for 20.

Separately, in July, Ukraine’s State Property Fund plans to auction state-owned United Mining and Chemical Company, Europe’s largest miner of ilmenite, the main source for titanium oxide.

 Ukraine produces 6% of global titanium ore and its proven reserves are among the world’s 10 largest. The first of this year’s ‘Big Privatizations,” the company is Europe’s only miner of rutile and zircon, reported International Mining. Information for the auction can be found at this link. Site visits are taking place. The starting price is $135 million.

The World Bank has approved a $200 million loan to modernize Ukraine’s universities and to upgrade their “relevance to labor market needs,

” the Bank reported after Board Meeting on May 5. The money will fund a 5-year program to develop “modern digital infrastructure” and to improve transparency in university administration. Arup Banerji, the Bank’s director for Eastern Europe, said a goal is “to modernize teaching and learning in universities in line with European standards.”

Cargill Metals has agreed to invest US$75 million in a Canadian major iron mining project in Kriviy Rih.

 In the deal Cargill, a major international iron ore trader, has agreed to take 4 million tons of iron ore from the Shymanivske mine, reports Black Iron Inc. “We are very pleased to help finance Black Iron’s Shymanivske Project,” Lee Kirk, managing director of Cargill Metals, said, noting environmental benefits. Black Iron’s CEO Matt Simpson released a statement saying: “Black Iron’s planned 68% iron content magnetite pellet feed is in the top 4% of global production by iron content and

To open up northern Moldova to Ukrainian trade and tourism

, a tender is underway for construction of what would be the second bridge on the 267 km Dniester River border between the two countries. Expected to cost $120 million, the bridge and seven kilometers of access roads are to be completed by the end of next year, according to the tender by the Vinnytsia highways department. The bridge, linking Yampil, Ukraine and Cosăuți, Moldova, will be midway on a 300 km north-south road that links Vinnytsia and Chisinau. Alexander

Estonian shareholders of Arricano Real Estate Plc registered in Cyprus, the management company and developer of a number of shopping and entertainment in Ukraine, have demanded $750 million in compensation for what they say is the illegal seizure of Sky Mall in Kyiv.

 “According to the press service of Arricano, after filing the notification, the parties have six months to settle the dispute before arbitration. If the parties fail to agree within the specified period, Estonian investors will apply to international investment arbitration against Ukraine” Interfax-Ukraine has reported.

The National Bank has simplified regulations for Ukrainian companies seeking to issue debt securities on the international market,

the NBU said. The following amendments were introduced: “transactions to distribute income on and redeem Eurobonds as well as other issuer transactions for the purpose of placing such securities were removed from the list that is subject to a EUR 2 million annual limit; foreign currency can be bought to be deposited on the own account of the issuer with a Ukrainian bank until the maturity date of liabilities under Eurobonds.”

Metinvest’s desired acquisition of the Dnipro Metallurigcal Plant is drawing attention from Ukraine’s antimonopoly regulator.

“The Committee is considering the case of concentration in the form of indirect acquisition by Metinvest BV Netherlands of assets in the form of an integral property complex, which together provide economic activities for the production and sale of metal products belonging to PJSC” DMK “. Case and assessment of the impact of the declared concentration on the competitive environment in the involved commodity markets, the Committee established the presence of possible negative effects on the market for commercial pig

President Zelenskiy yesterday signed a law allowing resumption of sales of large state companies,

a privatization process that was suspended one year ago due to the coronavirus pandemic. All sales are to go through electronic auctions. Zelenskiy said: ““Despite the coronavirus crisis, our goal of privatizing state-owned enterprises, which are often managed extremely inefficient and breeding grounds for corruption, remains unchanged.”

The Finance Ministry raised the equivalent of $370 million at its weekly auction yesterday,

the Ministry reported on its Facebook page. Yields in hryvnia reflect the Central Bank’s increase in the nation’s prime rate 10 days ago to 7.5%. The yields were: 6-month – 9%; 1-year – 11.2%; 1.5 year – 11.3%; 2-year – 11.96%; 3-year – 12.28%. In the foreign currency placements, the Ministry sold $21 million worth of 1-year dollar bonds at 3.7% and €42 million worth of 1-year euro bonds at 2.5%.

Zakarpattia’s new airport is to cost almost $150 million to build, and is to be completed by the summer of 2024.

This will be the end of President Zelenskiy’s current term. A priority for the government’s ‘Big Construction’ program, the airport is to have two 2,800-meter runways capable of handling A320 and B737 jets and a privately built terminal capable of handling 1 million passengers a year. This year’s state budget has allotted $1 million for the airport design. Coupled with large scale road paving and reconstruction in Zakarpattia, the airport will boost Ukraine’s Carpathian Mountains as an international tourist destination,

Korrespondent magazine has ranked Ukraine’s five most valuable brands:

Kyivstar (mobile) – $225 million; Rozetka (e-commerce) – $210 million; Darnitsa (pharmaceuticals) – $187 million; Morshynska (water) — $173.25 million; Nova Poshta (delivery) – $170 million. “Trust is almost a key component of a brand, and therefore, its value,” the magazine writes, referring to its annual survey. “The greatest growth in the value of brands was demonstrated by the three leaders – Kyivstar, Rozetka and the pharmaceutical company Darnitsa.”

Bolshevik, the oldest machine building plant in Kyiv, will probably be sold for the value of its 35 hectares of prime real estate,

predicts Dmytro Sennychenko, head of the State Property Fund. Founded 140 years ago by a Swiss engineer, the state-owned factory has fallen on hard times, with production dwindling and bushes growing out of rooves. But, for a developer, the location is gold: fronting on Peremohy, Kyiv’s 10-lane access highway from the west, Bolshevik is next to the Shuliavska metro station and near the Zoo, two parks and Kyiv Polytechnic Institute. Sennychenko predicts earnings from the sale will go to paying

Eight former prisons are to be sold this year,

Justice Minister Denys Malyushka writes on Facebook. Three – in Irpin, Lviv and Odesa – are already in the auction pipeline. The other five are to be transferred shortly to the State Property Fund. Pricing a former prison is proving tricky. For the prison ‘colony’ in Irpin, a fast-growing Kyiv suburb, the starting price was set at $7.8 million. After there were no bidders, the price was cut in half for an electronic auction in April. Once again, there were

The first of seven state-owned flour mills is to be privatized through auction on May 7

, the State Property Fund reports. Often called ‘bakeries’ these Soviet-era complexes mill wheat and corn into flour and animal feed. Located alongside railroad tracks, the seven ‘kombinats’ have elevators with a total storage capacity of 634,000 tons, about 1% of the nation’s total. Of the seven going up for sale, four are working and three are nonworking. The first auction will be of a working one, Dunayevets Bakery in Khmelnitsky Region. The starting price is $6.7 million.

BlaBlaCar, the Paris-based road travel platform, has acquired Octobus, a Ukrainian cloud platform that allows bus carriers to automate their business processes.

 The purchase, for an undisclosed sum, comes as the car-sharing service seeks combine on one platform carpooling and bus offerings for its 90 million users worldwide. In 2019, BlaBlaCar acquired Busfor, Ukraine’s largest aggregator of bus routes. Today, 5 million Ukrainians use BlaBlaCar, making Ukraine one of the three fastest growing countries among the 22 where company operates.

The EBRD is also lending $57 million to the Kernel Group to improve the storage, transportation and export of agricultural commodities

, the bank reported in a press release. The loan is part of a $200 million syndication arranged by French investment bank Natixis for Kernel, the world’s leading producer and exporter of sunflower oil. The EBRD announced: “The new financing will help the group enter the new harvest season with sufficient working capital to buy crops and prepare them for export, making full use of its newly expanded infrastructure.”