News

AGROKOR GROUP REVENUES HRK 9.15bn

The year 2003 shall be remembered as yet another in the continuous sequence of years of Agrokor's strong growth. Operating revenues generated during the year amount to HRK 9.15bn, which represents a growth of 37.3 per cent against the previous year, while net operating profits in 2003 grew by 28.1 per cent compared to 2002. Such strong growth verifies the value of Agrokor's years-long investments and its extraordinary results rank it among the biggest companies in the region. Agrokor's joining the group of companies with revenues exceeding USD 1.5bn demonstrates the strength of its proper strategy. The Group's particularly dynamic expansion is based on its strong organic growth in the first place, and only partly results from new acquisitions. Important for the business year being assessed as an excellent one is the fact that growth was realized in both of Agrokor's core businesses - Retail as well as Food. The very fact that since many years Agrokor has succeeded to maintain its dominant market shares in both key businesses is the main driving force of its success. The result achieved is even more significant being accompanied by a strong growth of Group profits. EBITDA thus reached enviable HRK 646m, representing an increase of 26 per cent compared to the previous year. Due to the particularly careful and efficient funds management, such EBITDA level made it possible to keep the targeted ratio of profits and financing costs. These extraordinary results gain particular importance having been achieved under the conditions of a slight overall economic slowdown, while at the same time competition has increased in all key areas of Agrokor's activities. Agrokor has succeeded in keeping its leading market position in Croatia by carefully routed, continuous investments into marketing and development, having created the strongest brands in the region. This has created the basis and the potential to realize its long-term strategy of approaching the regional market, with a view to achieve the leading position in South-East Europe in all Agrokor's core businesses. This will be realized by two means, either through acquiring congeneric industry capacities in the region, or by investing in its own distribution and sales network on other markets.

Events that were important for the Group's business in 2003 were the extraordinary market success of the new spring water brand Jana, which in only one and a half years since its market introduction conquered 39 per cent of the domestic market; the acquisition of the leading ice-cream and frozen food producer in Serbia, Frikom a.d., whereby Agrokor has definitely become regional leader in the ice-cream business; and last but not least raising the share of exports in total revenues of the Food group from 17.3 to 24.3 per cent. All these activities demonstrate that in the long term Agrokor can count on expanding and stabilizing its business in the region, which opens new strong potentials for further growth and development.