Business news from Ukraine

FUTURE OF FARMING DIALOGUE: TRANSFORMATION OF AGRICULTURE THROUGH DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY

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Virtual reality: to what extent does technology affect the success of a grower?

Date December 2, 2021 (Thursday)

Time 14:00

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Technology has changed dramatically over the last twenty years. Thanks to its rapid development, we explore, interact, buy and live differently. Agriculture is no exception. Growers can no longer work without satellites, drones and artificial intelligence. Technologies that help to collect data are becoming very important. However, perception of modern agriculture can be quite different – from a small farmer in a cab of old tractor to highly mechanized operations full of tractors and thousands of hectares. Sometimes it may seem that only high-tech farms use digital technology. But this is not quite true. Similar to how everyone on the planet uses smartphones, growers protect their crops with digital technology. But can digitalization really transform agriculture?  Can a farmer grow more using less?

This is what we will discuss on December 2 during the panel discussion “Transformation of Agriculture through Digital Technology”:

  • Is it possible to increase trust, transparency, reduce risks and be efficient in the relationship with a client, by providing new technologies, new opportunities, and a scientific basis?
  • How do optimal based pricing models and digital tools help to create sustainable food system?
  • How do investments in the development of new crop protection products, innovative genetics and digital tools help farmers to get better yields and to protect environment?
  • What is the role of data in decision-making?

These and other important topics our participants will be discussing during the panel discussion:

  • Olga Trofimtseva, President of Agricultural Platform
  • Sergiy Sychevskyi, Business Development Manager, Bayer
  • Dmytro Zaitsev, Head of Precision Agriculture Department, Continental Farmers Group
  • Mykola Chornonos, Head of Precision Agriculture Department and Telemetry in Ukraine, Moldova, Scandinavia and the Baltics, CNH Ukraine.
  • Kirill Druzhynin, Head of Innovations, Agrain

Moderator: Oleg Nivievskyi, Assistant Professor/Center for Food and Land Use Research at Kyiv School of Economics

Partner: Bayer.

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IT COMPANY WITH UKRAINIAN ROOTS RAISES MORE THAN $200 MLN IN INVESTMENTS

Grammarly, an IT company with Ukrainian roots, has attracted more than $200 million in investments from venture capitalists Baillie Gifford and BlackRock, according to a press release from the company.According to the announcement, Grammarly has reached a valuation of $13 billion.Grammarly plans to use the investment to accelerate product innovation and team growth.“Grammarly’s latest funding round underscores the importance of our mission and the broad need for effective communication,” Grammarly CEO Brad Hoover was quoted as saying.The company will also continue to promote its natural language processing and machine learning technologies to provide personalized feedback to users around the world.“We’re delighted to partner with the team at Grammarly to democratize effective communication. As the world has digitized, people communicate more than they ever have – yet it has never been so difficult,” Peter Singlehurst, Head of Private Companies at Baillie Gifford said.“What attracted us is the company’s vision and the team’s ability to drive the product forward to help more people in more situations communicate better. Grammarly’s long-term and ambitious approach also aligns with our approach to investing. We look forward to many years of partnership with Grammarly,” he said.The company also said that the number of Grammarly employees has almost tripled since 2019, and thanks to the recently announced hybrid model of remote work, the company is hiring employees in the United States, Canada and Ukraine.Grammarly was founded in 2009 by Kyiv residents: Max Lytvyn, Alex Shevchenko, and Dmytro Lider. Its offices are located in Kyiv, San Francisco, New York and Vancouver.Grammarly is an online grammar checker service created by Grammarly Inc. It automatically detects potential grammatical, spelling, punctual, verbal and style errors. The service is available in a web editor, desktop app, as well as extensions for Chrome, Safari, Firefox and Edge browsers, mobile keyboards, and an add-in for Microsoft Office.

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REDUCED TAX RATE IN DIIA CITY TO ALLOW UKRAINIAN IT COMPANIES TO COMPETE MORE SUCCESSFULLY WITH FOREIGN ONES – OPINION

Co-founder of the Ukrainian multi-gaming e-sports organization Natus Vincere (NAVI) Oleksandr Kokhanovsky said that he supports the creation of a special legal regime for IT companies – Diia City.
As Kokhanovsky said during the presentation of Diia City on Monday, his plans are to raise at least $100 million investments in projects in which he is involved, while he noted that the conditions of Diia City would mean fewer risks for foreign investors.
According to him, the reduced tax rate, which will operate within Diia City, will allow Ukrainian companies to compete more successfully with foreign ones, and the strengthening of legislation in the field of intellectual property will improve the country’s image in the eyes of international investors.
“Our goal is to make Kyiv a core of e-sports in Europe. And I am very glad that now we have an ally that will speed up this process at times,” he said during the presentation.
Earlier, Deputy Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada Committee on Digital Transformation Yehor Chernev said that he hopes to adopt a legislative framework for the launch of a special legal regime Diia City by mid-summer.
The Ministry of Digital Transformation of Ukraine expects that the tax system for companies in the Diia City mode will help reduce the tax burden 5-fold.
According to Fedorov, thanks to Diia City, the income of the IT industry in Ukraine by 2025 may grow to $16.5 billion, and the number of jobs in this industry is planned to be increased to 450,000.

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DESIGN, IT, ADVERTISING, MARKETING, PR SEE LARGEST GROWTH IN INCOME AMONG CREATIVE INDUSTRIES

Design, IT, advertising, marketing and PR saw the largest growth in the declared income in 2020 among creative industries, according to the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy.
“The Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine, together with the team of Kyiv School of Economics and with the support of the USAID Competitive Economy Program in Ukraine, prepared a study on the volume of tax revenues to the consolidated budget of Ukraine and the payment of a single contribution by business entities in the field of creative industries in 2019 and 2020,” the ministry’s press service said.
It is noted that in 2020 the declared income fell more compared to the previous year in the performance sector (less by 17%), audiovisual sector (less by 8%), book publishing, libraries and museums (less by 3% each).
“The fall in VAT, which indicates a decrease in the volume of sales of goods and services, in some sectors reached 50% compared to 2019: theater and concert activities [less by 53%], film screenings [less by 45%], the operation of theater and concert halls and activities to support them [less by 42-43%], activities in the field of television broadcasting [less by 38%], and the functioning of museums [less by 35%],” the report said.
The following sectors showed the largest growth in the declared volume of income in 2020: design (more by 31%), IT (more by 26%), advertising, marketing, and PR (more by 5%).
“Despite the quarantine measures, registration of new businesses did not stop in 2020. Since the growth in tax revenues occurred faster than the growth in the number of business entities, this may indirectly indicate an increase in the tax burden,” the ministry said.

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KYIVSTAR TO LAUNCH OPEN TELECOM PLATFORM FOR INTERACTION WITH IT GROCERY COMPANIES

Kyivstar, the mobile network operator, has announced the launch of the Open Telecom Platform, an online platform for interaction with IT grocery companies, which allows connecting to the operator’s services and using its data sets for product development and testing.
“Tomorrow we will take the first step. We will present a kind of portal of data versions for our potential partners – Open Telecom Platform from Kyivstar. It will give them the opportunity to connect to us, integrate with us and use some of the more popular service options that we are selling right now as a kind of trial version for creating own products, ideas or applications,” Kyivstar President of Alexander Komarov said during the online forum Lviv IT Arena on Friday.
According to him, the available options for using the portal are largely related to the capabilities and data available to Kyivstar as the largest Ukrainian operator.

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PRESIDENT OF UKRAINE WANTS DEVELOP IT INDUSTRY BY IMPROVING PROCEDURE OF IMMIGRATION TO IT SPECIALISTS

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky has set the government to draft and submit to the Verkhovna Rada bills aimed at developing the IT industry in Ukraine.

According to the presidential website, Zelensky signed relevant decree No. 371/2020 on September 3, 2020.

According to the document, the Cabinet of Ministers, with the involvement of representatives of government agencies, business associations, independent experts and MPs, should draft and submit to the parliament bills aimed at stimulating the implementation of economic activities in the field of information technologies within three months.

In particular, at the legislative level, the temporal features of the taxation of salaries of IT specialists who are in labour relations with IT companies should be determined in order to establish an effective level of the tax burden and promote the shadowing of the salary sphere and increase the competitiveness of internal IT companies in the external market.

The president also insists on improving the procedure for carrying out procedural actions in the course of criminal proceedings in order to prevent unjustified interference in the activities of IT companies.

In addition, according to the decree, the government should improve the procedures for obtaining an immigration permit by IT specialists who are foreigners or stateless persons and immigrating to Ukraine and obtaining a work permit for foreigners and stateless persons by an employer (IT company).

The Cabinet of Ministers should also contribute to the development of education in the field of information technology and the integration of the best world practices into the system of training IT specialists to increase their competitiveness in the labour market.

According to the document, the improvement of vocational training, retraining and advanced training of the unemployed should be ensured be involving educational institutions that train specialists in the IT field.

The decree comes into force on the day of its publication.

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