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Skating fun from Austria

AST ice rink in front of Vienna's Rathaus © Stadt Wien Marketing

© Stadt Wien Marketing

12. March 2011

Ice skaters and sports enthusiasts from all over the world skate on artificial ice rinks from AST. The Austrian specialist for ice technology has pinpointed opportunities for growth, particularly in Eastern Europe, Asia and North America.

Since 1986 AST Eis- u. Solartechnik GmbH has been supplying solar units and ice rinks to communities, cities, event companies and swimming pools in over 40 countries. They are found in unexpected places: in football stadiums, event venues, hotels, film sets, shopping centres and pedestrian areas, as well as in front of historical buildings in the heart of cities.

Around 75% of AST’s revenue is generated abroad. The main market is Europe (market share of around 50%, worldwide around 40%). AST has identified opportunities for growth in Asia and Eastern Europe – particularly in the renovation sector. The company has over 270 mobile ice rinks in various sizes, totalling 135,000m².

Rinks from AST which have proven popular with the public include those in front of Vienna’s City Hall, in front of the Old Opera in Frankfurt, the Eiffel Tower in Paris and in the Olympic Stadium in Peking. The company has already been a supplier to 9 world championships and has also fitted out cruise ships such as the “Oasis of the Seas” and the “Genesis of the Seas”. In addition to ice rinks, AST provides cooling systems for inrun ski jumps (e.g. for Planica and Harachov).

The second AST division is now set to grow: solar technology. This currently generates between 15 and 20% of revenue. The focus is on solar solutions for large-scale facilities, particularly public swimming pools, but also industrial plants.