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Major deficit for Røkke

Foto: Scanpix
Billionaire Kjell Inge Røkke's business is not going very well at the moment. The Aker RGI Group's deficit was a staggering NOK 424 million for the period 1 January through 30 June 2003.

The negative result is in sharp contrast to that of last year, when the surplus was NOK 1.2 billion.

Still, CEO Leif-Arne Langøy thinks the situation is better than last year, as in the first half of 2002, the operating profit was boosted by a NOK 1.6 billion gain on the merger of Aker Maritime's core operations into Kvaerner, among other items.

A great deal of this year's deficit is due to trouble with sister company Dexion. The company has struggled with deficits both in 2001 and 2002, and the problems are still there this year. Aker RGI has also lost money on owning 49.9 percent of the shares in Aker Kvaerner, as the company has dropped in value.

In July the Dexion leaders issued major cost-cuts. Staff will be reduced from 3000 to 1800 and the main office will be moved from London to Oslo. Dexion Group's new management is in place, with Hallvard Muri as new President and CEO.

According to RGI's half-year report, both ship-building and fisheries go very well. All ship-builder's run with profits, though the leaders fear that the situation will become worse in 2004, Norwegian ship-builders in particular need new orders to come in.

The Norway Seafoods Group shows stable, solid operations and is developing well overall, despite a generally difficult market.

"Norway Seafoods is expecting to continue its positive development, based on quota projections for the most important fish species and increasing volumes of products delivered to better-paying fresh fish markets in Europe", Aker RGI states in a press release.

The performance of our Aker Yards Group and Norway Seafoods Group makes CEO Leif-Arne Langøy content despite the deficit. Still, he needs time before Dexion is up and running.

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