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Ukraine sells first of 17 state-owned prosthetics firms as demand surges

Khmelnytskyі Prosthetic and Orthopedic Enterprise. (Photo by State Property Fund of Ukraine)

The State Property Fund of Ukraine, charged with privatizing state companies, sold the first of 17 prosthetics and orthopedics firm it holds, as the war drives up demand for its products.

The Khmelnytskyі Prosthetic and Orthopedic Enterprise, a manufacturer of prosthetic and orthopedic products with 47 employees in western Ukraine, sold for 32 million hryvnias ($880,000) in an auction last week with two bidders. The buyer was obliged to agree to remain in the prosthetics business for at least 10 years.

The auction was the second attempt to sell the company, which posted a profit of just 36,000 hryvnias, or about $990, in the first half of this year. The first attempt, with a starting price of 49.5 million hryvnias, failed to draw bidders.

"Due to the growing demand, the Ukrainian prosthetics market needs to constantly modernize," the state property fund said in announcing the sale. "State enterprises find it increasingly difficult to operate and compete with private manufacturers who are more technologically advanced. In such market conditions, privatization will undoubtedly allow them to maintain production, a qualified workforce, and also adopt new technologies and expand production capacity."

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