ECONOMY

In Brief

Amendment finalizes details of Olympic hospitality schemes Homeowners will be able to let their property for three days to two months between July 10 and September 10 next year, under the Olympic hospitality schemes, according to an amendment tabled in Parliament yesterday. The Greek National Tourism Organization (GNTO) will be the sole agency responsible for surveying and approving apartments, which may be let through schemes operated either by Alpha Hospitality (tel 210.3266.156) and Hellenic Hospitality (tel 210.6849.222) or travel agents. Sources said GNTO will charge 120 euros for each property surveyed. Michaniki revises 2002 results, stock gains Listed construction group Michaniki, with contracts worth 113 million euros for the Athens 2004 Olympics, yesterday revised upward its 2002 results, also reversing an earlier decision not to pay shareholders a dividend. Michaniki said it made use of a recent Finance Ministry measure granting firms the right to amortize goodwill costs against reserves rather than operating results. According to the revised results, group pretax profits after minorities go up 16.4 percent to 13.5 million euros, and turnover rises 3.9 percent to 119.8 million. After the news, Michaniki outperformed on the Athens bourse yesterday, gaining 3.52 percent to 1.47 euros. Shareholdes have approved share buyback schemes of up to 6.81 percent for common stock, and 6.47 percent for preferred stock. An extraordinary general meeting is scheduled for April 4. Ombudsman Complaints to the Banking Ombudsman for inadequate or erroneous information provided by banks rose 45 percent to 1,305 in 2002. A further 1,280 complaints concerned disputes over charges, mainly for purchases made with stolen or lost credit cards. Lesser numbers of complaints concerned problems with mortgages and consumer loans, and delays in granting loans. In 447 of the 543 cases that the Ombudsman examined, bank clients were either fully or partially vindicated. Eurocorp Avax Securities, a member of the Eurocorp group, is to be renamed as Eurocorp Securities after the group’s recent incorporation into Credit Lyonnais. «Credit Lyonnais aims to strengthen its presence in Greece, with penetration in the Greek stock market through Eurocorp… Our incorporation offers security and recognizability while also adding authority and a European prospect… We shall be able to offer our clients alternative forms of investment and significant opportunities to tap the potential of more markets and products,» said Eurocorp President Ion Koufopantelis. Ecotourism The Development Ministry has issued a tender for a 1.53-million-euro publicity campaign for ecotourism programs. The project includes printed material, the development of a web portal, CD-ROMs and interactive material and various events for the promotion of the six Olympic cities (Athens, Thessaloniki, Patras, Volos, Iraklion, Ancient Olympia) and surrounding areas. Deadline for bids is May 14. Ridenco Clothing firm Ridenco will devote up to 5 million euros toward setting up an Italian subsidiary. The firm reported net profit growth of 23 percent to 2.91 million euros for 2002, on turnover growth of 10.6 percent to 24.4 million.