Page 3 Business Review | November 4 - 10, 2013


NEWS in brief

WEEK in numbers



Astronergy snaps up 6MW solar farm

Romgaz IPO gets underway The government has approved the IPO pricing for Romgaz, the state-owned natural gas producer, in the biggest offering on the Bucharest Stock Exchange (BSE) which was due to start on October 21. The state aims to raise between EUR 311 million and EUR 416 million for a 15 percent stake in Romgaz, the biggest gas producer and supplier in Romania. The pricing ranges between EUR 5.4 and EUR 7.2 per share (RON equivalent). The offer runs through to October 31. The listing is part of Romania’s privatization program agreed with the IMF.

INSURANCE Aegon launches new division in Romania Dutch insurer Aegon has launched a new division in Romania which grants clients access to large investment funds, targeting average- and high-earning individuals. Aegon Private Investments will facilitate investments in international funds managed by large financial groups of the likes of Allianz and JP Morgan. Investments starting at EUR 5,000 can be placed through Aegon Privilege. Sinziana Maioreanu, Aegon CEO for Romania, said this kind of investment is more accessible than the direct purchase of fund units. Aegon’s new division, which has been active in Romania for two months, already manages a portfolio of over 50 contracts. The insurer aims to strengthen its local presence after acquiring the life insurance and private pension portfolios from Eureko earlier

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Astronergy Solar Netherlands, part of China’s Chint group, has entered the Romanian renewable sectors by acquiring a solar park. The company took over a solar farm with an installed capacity of 5.98MW developed by ACV Solar Technology in Cluj County. Last year, the company completed a 50MW solar installation in neighboring Bulgaria. Astronergy’s investments have primarily focused on the Asian markets. The China-based company also manufactures equipment for the photovoltaic industry, supplying markets in Europe, Asia and America. Wolf Theiss provided the due diligence in the acquisition stage. The firm will continue to assist Astronergy in implementing the deal and on the future restructuring of Solar Technology SRL.

US, Romania start works on missile defense shield in Deveselu The main construction of the ballistic missile defense system in Deveselu, southern Romania, started last week, as part of a wider project designed to enhance NATO defense capabilities. A ceremony organized on the grounds of the former air base in Deveselu was attended by President Traian Basescu and government officials. They were joined by high-ranking NATO and US military representatives, including Alexander Vershbow, deputy secretary-general of NATO, and Sorin Ducaru, assistant secretarygeneral for emerging security challenges at NATO. this year. It has also launched its own distribution chain.

MONEY Ioan Niculae named richest local businessperson With EUR 1.1 billion in wealth, Romanian businessman Ioan Niculae topped this year’s Forbes list of 500 billionaires, reports Agerpres newswire. Niculae, 59, controls the agri-business conglomerate Interagro, which he founded. Recently, his group was dragged into a highprofile corruption scandal, involving former economy ministers Varujan Vosganian and Adriean Videanu. Niculae is accused of securing cheaper gas supply contracts for his fertilizer plants from state-owned gas producer Romgaz. Vosganian resigned from the top ministerial job following the corruption allegations. Niculae is trailed by Dan Grigore Adamescu, with a fortune of EUR 950 million, and by Frank Timis and Ion Tiriac, worth EUR 850 million each.

PHARMA Alliance Healthcare Deutschland gains full ownership of Farmexpert German Alliance Healthcare Deutsch-

land, the pharmaceuticals wholesaler that is part of the Alliance Boots Group, has gained full ownership of Romanian Farmexpert, the pharmaceuticals distributor. The German company acquired the remaining 20 percent of the local distributor from Eugen Banciu, Farmexpert’s founder. Alliance Healthcare Deutschland acquired a 60 percent stake in the Romanian firm in 2006, further increasing its controlling stake to 80 percent last year. Farmexpert is the biggest distributor on the local pharmaceuticals market, and posted a turnover of EUR 445 million in 2012. The company has close to 1,000 employees.

PROPERTY Belrom Real Estate to invest EUR 3 mln in expanding Botosani mall After investing EUR 15 million in opening Botosani Shopping Center in November 2011, developer Belrom Real Estate says it will invest another EUR 3 million in expanding the project. The investment will go into increasing the mall’s gross leasable area by 5,000 sqm and adding 500 parking spaces. The decision to expand the shop-

the number of stores Mega Image currently has in Romania. Out of these, 105 are Shop&Go proximity outlets (which have a smaller sales surface than regular supermarkets) and 154 Mega Image supermarkets. At the end of September, Mega Image, which is part of the Belgian Delhaize group, launched a new retail brand in Romania, AB Cool Food, which sells exclusively frozen foods had close to 10.4 million customers, 183,000 up on the previous three months

EUR 3.9 bln Romania’s projected agricultural growth in 2013, according to BCR data. This year’s estimated production of RON 80 billion (EUR 18 bln) is RON 13 billion (EUR 3.9) above the 2012 level ping mall was taken because of “the area’s development potential and the success of the first phase of the project”, said company representatives. At present, Botosani Shopping Center has a gross leasable area of some 14,800 sqm, which in the first year after the opening generated revenues of EUR 1.4 million. The shopping mall, which is located in Botosani, north-eastern Romania, has a catchment area of more than 100,000 people, according to company data. It is home to 26 shops and has an occupancy rate of 98 percent.

TELECOM Romtelecom and Cosmote sign telecom deal with Bancpost Romtelecom and Cosmote have become the exclusive providers of telecom services for Bancpost. Over the next two years, Romtelecom, via its business solutions division, will provide fiber optic-based VPN MPLS data and integrated IP telephony services, while Cosmote will provide mobile and data services to Bancpost. The lender, which has more than 1 million clients, is active in retail, corporate and institutional banking via a territorial network of 233 branches, eight regional centers and eight business centers.

Business Review Issue 35/2013 November 4 - 10  

Starting 2014 local farmers should see more predictability, said minister Daniel Constantin at the INDAGRA international agri-business trade...

Business Review Issue 35/2013 November 4 - 10  

Starting 2014 local farmers should see more predictability, said minister Daniel Constantin at the INDAGRA international agri-business trade...