ECONOMY

In Brief

Delta and Goody’s sign memorandum with France’s Sodexho Delta Holdings and fast-food chain Goody’s said yesterday they had signed a cooperation memorandum with French caterer Sodexho Alliance to operate in the Greek and Cypriot catering markets. Intertaste Catering, a subsidiary of Goody’s group member Hellenic Catering, will act as the vehicle for the agreement. Sodexho will buy a 41-percent stake in Intertaste at the end of 2001 and another 10 percent in August 2002, the companies said. Delta Holdings includes 13 dairy, fruit juice and frozen food companies in southeast Europe. The company recently upped its stake in Goody’s to 60 percent from 25.4 percent. Sodexho will also have the option to later raise its stake in Intertaste by 7.5 percent, it said. Sodexho Alliance is the world’s largest contract caterer, whose activities include food and management services, remote site management and river and harbor cruises. (Reuters) 2004 Olympic products anti-counterfeit deal Applied Optical Technologies shares soared yesterday as the company, which makes anti-counterfeiting products, said it had won a contract to protect the 2004 Olympic Games merchandise range. Shares were up 11 pence or 12.6 percent to 98.5 pence by 8.30 GMT, valuing the stock at around 53 million pounds ($75 million) – its highest price since late June. Applied Optical said in a statement the contract’s value would depend on the level of sales of official merchandise from the 2004 Olympics, which will be held in Athens. The Olympics deal is the latest in a series of sports contract wins for Applied Optical, which also protects the merchandise brands of the Professional Golf Association (PGA) Tour and the US National Basketball Association. (Reuters) NBG announcement. The National Bank of Greece announced to investors that on 15 November 2001, 1,615,275 bonds of the fifth and last mandatory conversion to shares from NBG’s 1996 convertible bond issue were converted into 6,461,096 common registered voting shares, not entitled to dividend for the year 2001 under Law 2441/15 November 1996, article 3. Please be reminded that the National Bank of Greece acquired the above bonds from the Public Enterprise of Transferable Securities SA (DEKA SA) under the agreement dated 13 December 2000 between the Bank and DEKA ratified by Law 2892/2001, article 11. Pursuant to the conversion, NBG’s share capital increased by 9,907,289,213 drachmas and now amounts to 359,640,152,299 drachmas or 1,055,436,984 euros, divided into 234,541,552 shares of a nominal value of 1,533.375 drachmas or 4.50 euros each. The 6,461,100 shares shall be listed for trading on the Athens Stock Exchange on 26 November 2001 as a special category of shares (ETEAM). Unpaid credit rises. Unpaid bills of exchange in October rose 21.8 percent in value to 4.6 billion drachmas in October in relation to the same month of 2000. Bounced checks were also up 22.6 percent to 16.7 billion. In the 10 months to October, the value of unpaid bills and bounced checks together rose 21 percent. Bankruptcies in the same period were down 8 percent.