A San Francisco-based firm, Propy, has used cyber currency to buy an apartment in Kyiv, registering the title on a cyber-ledger. The buyer was Michael Arrington, founder of online publisher TechCrunch and an adviser to Propy, according to The Wall Street Journal. He remotely paid $60,000 for an apartment overlooking the Dnipro using a digital currency named “ether” for payment and “PRO” tokens, a new digital currency issued by Propy, for the registry fee. The deal was registered on a cyber-currency technology known as a blockchain. Online and offline title recording processes were integrated under new regulations adopted by Ukraine, Alex Voloshyn, Propy’s chief technology officer, told the Journal. He said Propy hopes to next do a real estate deal in the US state of Vermont, which also is adopting enabling regulations.
• Two Ukrainian brothers, Andrij and Roman Zinchenko, have won Stanford University’s 2017 Bright Award for their work in promoting energy conservation and efficiency. They founded and run Greencubator, a network of sustainable energy enthusiasts and experts which encourages energy innovation through education, media initiatives, mentorship and events, including large-scale hackathons. Roman is a visiting lecturer at Kiev School of Economics and Lviv Business School, and has hosted and curated TEDxKiev for several years. The award comes with $100,000 in prize money
• Since the 2014 Revolution of Dignity, foreign investment has created twice as many jobs in the Lviv Region -- 7,021 -- as in the Kyiv Region -- 3,630. That is the conclusion of a Financial Times analysis of cross-border investment flows by fDi Intelligence, an FT data service. “In the post-revolutionary period, the Kiev region attracted €687m in foreign capital expenditure, followed closely by Lviv with €658m and Odessa, a southern port city, with €596m,” Yuri Bender, editor in chief of the FT’s monthly magazine Professional Wealth Management, writes from Lviv. “The westernmost part of the country is enjoying a clear revival.”
• Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko proposes restoring the city’s faded Hydropark island recreation area with a ‘Kyiv Disneyland.’ Speaking before a packed hall at Kyiv’s annual investment conference, the Mayor also proposed building a 25 km bicycle path from Irpin, a northwest suburb, to central Kyiv and a tourist cable car line crossing the Dnipro.
• Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman predicts Ukraine's economy will surge in coming years. "I'm calling on everyone to invest,” he told Kyiv’s annual Investment Forum. “Hardly could anyone find a country on the map of modern Europe -- and even the world -- that can generate such an economic growth that will be demonstrated by Ukraine.” The Finance Ministry forecasts that Ukraine’s economy will grow by a total of 11% through 2020. Groysman said: "Your investment will succeed, as the economy has been growing, and the government really stands for the development of the national economy.”
• Swedish clothing brand H&M has signed a lease for retail space in Lavina shopping mall on Kyiv’s Ring Road. H&M, formally Hennes & Mauritz AB, plans to open in August. With stores in 62 countries, H&M s the second largest global clothing retailer, just behind Spain-based Inditex, the parent company of Zara.
• So far this year, Ukraine has exported nearly twice the volume of oil seeds, compared to the first nine months of last year, reports the Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food. Ukraine has already exported 1.32 million tons of oilseeds. Grain exports are running at about the same level as last year – 10.2 million tons. Through July, potato exports are up 50 percent, to 11 million tons.
• Ukraine's trade envoy, Nataliya Mykolska, tells UNIAN that 63 Ukrainian companies are licensed to export food to EU. About half were licensed since free trade with the EU started last year.
• UBC Group of Kharkiv has invested EUR 18 million in the first stage of a refrigerator plant in Vinnytsia. The company plans to eventually produce 150,000 refrigerators and freezers for sale in Ukraine and for export.
• Dragon Capital has expanded its media portfolio with the purchase of Radio-Era FM. The Kyiv-based investment bank already owns the weekly newsmagazine Novoye Vremya.
• DTEK Naftogaz, the gas production unit of Ukraine’s largest private energy holding, plans to maintain its current exploration rate of drilling 3-4 new wells a year, Ivan Hafych, the director for exploration, tells Interfax-Ukraine. Hafych said a tender for drilling the wells will made shortly.
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