In Brief

Titan 2006 net gains up 23 pct despite Q4 drop Cement producer Titan said yesterday 2006 net profit rose 23 percent, due to steady growth abroad and strong demand at home, despite a slowdown in the fourth quarter. Net profit came to 259 million euros, but fourth-quarter net income was down 15 percent to 46 million euros, mainly due to a decline in the US housing market. «In Greece, the surge in demand for building materials continued, with sales volumes reaching historic highs,» the company said. The company also said it would propose a dividend of 0.75 euros per share on 2006 earnings, up from 0.60 euros in the previous year. (Reuters) EETT warns companies, consumers on triple-play The National Telecommunications and Posts Commission (EETT) yesterday warned landline telephony and ADSL Internet providers of the need for full transparency about new services and rates, in view of the rapidly increasing competition in the domain this year. EETT also urged consumers not to rush into new contracts as the fast progress in technology will greatly augment the options at their disposal in the months ahead. EETT has already received complaints from consumers on unclear charging practices. HELPE 06 net profit down Refiner Hellenic Petroleum said yesterday 2006 net profit fell 22 percent to 260 million euros, broadly in line with market forecasts, as oil refining margins narrowed. The group said it will propose a dividend per share of 0.43 euros for 2006, unchanged from the previous year. HELPE President Timos Christodoulou said the group would be present in the tender for Cyprus’s reserves jointly with other oil major, but added that the matter was too early for discussion. He added the group planned to invest 850 million euros in the Aspropyrgos refinery, including a hydro-cracking unit with a capacity of 40,000 barrels per day. Edison in FYROM bid Italy’s second-biggest electricity producer Edison said it would place a bid for a project to build hydroelectric plants for a combined production of 500 megawatts in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. «We have qualified for an auction in FYROM,» CEO Umberto Quadrino told a briefing on Edison’s 2006 results. Quadrino said he was interested in expanding into the Balkans and around the Mediterranean. «All of the Balkans is interesting because there are initiatives for renewable (energy),» he said. (Reuters) New Fnac store The second Fnac outlet in Greece will open in the center of Glyfada at year-end, with another for Athens city center being negotiated. Fnac-Marinopoulos aims to create three to four stores in Athens and two to three in Thessaloniki within five years, with Cyprus to follow. Each new outlet requires an investment of about 3 million euros. Nireus block trade Citigroup bought a block of 2 million shares in Greek fish-farming group Nireus yesterday on behalf of institutional clients, a source close to the deal said. The block of shares was crossed at 4.4 euros a share. (Reuters)