HEADS OF Kibbutz Industries are not in a mood for celebration, and it's purely coincidental that they chose to meet at Kibbutz Shefayim on Valentine's Day (Thursday) to try to get to the heart of the problem of how to deal with the declining dollar. To throw a little light on the subject, they have invited Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer, Histadrut chairman Ofer Eini and Meretz MK Haim Oron to discuss the subject. The kibbutz industrialists will voice their concerns, and the guest speakers will discuss Israel's fiscal policy in light of those concerns. JERUSALEM CAPITAL Studios, which provides services to local and foreign media outlets, has announced the appointment of Hagai Laufer as head of its news and production resources division. Laufer, 36, has had a distinguished career as a television and film director, and inter alia has produced image documentaries for leading Israeli and overseas companies. He replaces Eli Dadon, who was head news producer for HOT for the past five years, and Danny Reicher, who produced the HOT news and managed the central studio. KENES INTERNATIONAL specializes in organizing global congresses and providing associate management services. It has contracted with the Singapore-based conglomerate PICO to establish a new company, Kenes Asia, which will focus on medical and scientific congresses throughout Asia. The new venture will be set up on a 50/50 basis at an initial investment of $1 million. PICO is one of the largest companies in the Far East specializing in initiating, marketing and servicing international congresses. The creation of Kenes Asia was announced by company CEO Dan Rivlin and Simon Israel, chairman of the Singapore Tourism Board. The extension of its activities to Asia and the Pacific is part of Kenes International's strategy in its aim to become one of the world's leading congress organizers. SOROKA MEDICAL Center in Beersheba has announced the appointment of Prof. Eugene Leibowitz as head of its Pediatric Emergency Department. He is a senior physician in Soroka's Pediatric Infectious Diseases Unit. Leibowitz, 56, married and the father of two, graduated from the Tel Aviv University School of Medicine. He specialized in pediatric medicine at Kaplan Hospital, then went to New York University to specialize in pediatric infectious diseases. He joined the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Unit at Soroka in 1994. He has published more than 130 papers on pediatric infectious diseases, their prevention and cure in leading medical journals in Israel and abroad. SERVICE WAS not always high on the agenda of many Israeli companies. But as they began to compete in the international market place they began to realize that service is a priority if one wants to succeed in business. It also helped that organizations such as the Israel Management Center (IMC) award prizes each year to companies whose service is considered to be outstanding. It may be a chicken-and-egg conundrum as to whether the desire to give service preceded the desire to win the prize, but the intention is less relevant than its outcome. Approximately a year ago, Eurocom Panasonic CEO Moti Elmaliach called Orit Haim, Eurocom's head of external relations, into his office and tasked her with inspecting the company's service levels in order to pinpoint areas that could be improved. A few days ago, the two joined senior managers of other companies at the IMC Service Forum to find out who the winners were for 2007. After a tense half hour, forum chairman and El Al CEO Haim Romano, along with IMC director-general Pnina Shenhav, rose to make the announcement. When Elmaliach heard that Eurocom Panasonic had won first prize with four stars for service, he let out a shout of triumph that completely changed the mood of the event, with colleagues on all sides clustering to congratulate him. YOU'VE HEARD of Labels for Less, well now you can get jeans for less. Replay has opened its first factory outlet store in Israel in the Holon industrial zone. The store has been designed to look as if it was created to fit in with an industrial environment. It carries up-to-date "his and her" fall collections. STERN ARIELY Public Relations has scored a feather in its cap by landing the account of Google Israel. With the parent company in the news so much, it's likely that Google Israel will follow suit, so Stern Ariely will have its work cut out. ISRAELI FURNITURE designer Arik Ben-Simhon will participate for the first time in the international furniture design show Salone Internazionale de Mobile in Milan. Ben-Simhon said the invitation to participate in the prestigious show, which will take place from April 16-21, was not only a personal honor, but an honor for Israel. The annual event attracts leading furniture design companies and individual designers of repute. Ben-Simhon said he would invest NIS 1.5 million in his 500 sq.m. exhibit.