Business News

Illustrative photo: renjith krishnan,

In Business News this week: the Czech economy grew by four percent year-on-year in first quarter of 2015; E15: MAFRA shows interest in acquiring Slevomat; Car sales in the Czech Republic went up by five percent in the first six months of this year; Czech cinemas charge an average 129 crowns for a seat.

Czech economy grew by four percent year-on-year in first quarter of 2015

Illustrative photo: renjith krishnan,
The Czech economy grew by four percent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2015, according to a revised estimate by the Czech Statistical Office, which was published on Friday. The previous estimate from the end of May put growth at 4.2 percent. The office also downgraded its estimate for quarterly Gross Domestic Product growth from the original 3.1 percent to 2.5 percent. The revision was caused by new data on value added tax. Despite the revision, the figures still show the biggest year-on-year growth since 2007 and the strongest quarter-on-quarter growth ever.

Moody’s: Czech government accounts look solid in 2015-2016

Illustrative photo: Khalil Baalbaki / Czech Radio
The Czech Republic’s government accounts will likely remain solid in 2015-2016, supported by prudent fiscal policy and relatively low debt level, the international rating agency Moody’s Investors Service indicated in the country’s annual Credit Analysis. However, the agency notes that political uncertainty represents a certain risk. “The Czech Republic benefits from the government's track record of prudent fiscal policy and balance sheet strength. This is supported by relatively low government debt ratio and strong debt-affordability," Moody’s analyst Marco Zaninelli said. Moody’s notes that the Czech economy is experiencing a strong rebound and forecasts an increase in real GDP growth to 2.5% in 2015 and 2.7% in 2016, driven mainly by domestic demand.

MAFRA shows interest in acquiring Slevomat: E15

The publishing house MAFRA, purchased by Andrej Babiš in 2013, is interested in acquiring Slevomat, the biggest Czech Internet site offering bargain buys, the daily E15 reported this week. The company, owned by investment group Miton a Enern, has paid off initial investments and posts profit margins of around 10 percent. Some 1.2 million people have shopped on Slevomat and the company has information about 1.7 million users in its database. Slevomat and MAFRA representatives refused to comment on the possible acquisition.

Car sales in Czech Republic up by fiver percent in first half of 2015

Illustrative photo: archive of The Government of the Czech Republic
Car sales in the Czech Republic rose by five percent in the first six months of this year, compared with the same period in 2014. Some 113,261 new vehicles were sold between January and the end of last month. Czech car maker Škoda Auto was the best-selling brand in the country with over 36,500 sold cars, followed by Hyundai and Volkswagen. The most popular model was the Škoda Octavia, followed by the Fabia and Rapid. Low mid-sized class cars represented 23 percent of total sales, followed by small cars (19 percent) and sport utility vehicles (18 percent).

Czech cinemas charge on average 129 crowns per ticket

Illustrative photo: Manu Mohan / FreeImages
Czech cinemas on average charge 129 crowns for a seat this year, which is roughly 2.5 percent more than in the previous year, according to a study Global Entertainment Media Outlook 2014-2018 carried out by the consultancy PwC. The price of cinema tickets is expected to rise at the same pace over the next four years. The average price of a cinema ticket worldwide is 101 crowns or 3.7 euros. The difference between the admission price to small local cinemas and large multiplexes in the Czech Republic has been increasing. While local cinemas charge around 100 crowns, ticket prices at multiplexes sometimes reaches over 300 crowns. Revenues from online video streaming in the Czech Republic this year for the first time surpassed revenues from the sale of DVDs or Blu-ray.