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Food Express to build Ft 1.5 bln production facility outside Budapest

Food Express Kft, a company that makes and delivers hot lunches, will soon build a Ft 1.5 billion production facility on the outskirts of Budapest, business daily Világgazdaság reported on Thursday.

The facility will have capacity to produce 100,000 lunches a day, twice that at Food Express's current facility, managing director Balázs Zsidek said. However, the new plant will require no more staff than the current facility's 200, because of the high level of automation. The facility, to be outfitted with equipment from Western Europe, will be one of the most modern in the region, Zsidek said. It will be completed in 6-9 months.
Food Express controls about half of Hungary's market for hot lunch deliveries, serving Budapest and other big cities around the country. By the end of 2007, the company plans to offer services across the entire country, and it aims to have foreign units by 2008. Food Express, set up in 1995, employs 500 people and runs a fleet of 220 vehicles. It also recently launched an online store.
This year, Food Express targets a 20% revenue increase over 2005's Ft 3.31 billion. Food Express had operating income of Ft 86.2 million and net income of Ft 57.8 million last year.