Features, Insurance

Top insurers in SEE pocket hefty profits, premium growth lags

Southeast Europe’s return to steady growth, though slow to affect the insurers in the region, is eventually showing in their balance sheets. Read more

Banking, Features

SEE banking sector sees robust profit growth, top lender Zagrebacka turns to loss

Southeast Europe’s banking sector remained largely stable in 2015 and 2016 amid stricter capital requirements and low interest rate environment. Read more

Features

2015: SEE corporate sector makes shy steps to growth, retailers lead the way

After several tough years, economic activity in Southeast Europe (SEE) picked up in 2015 and continued to strengthen in 2016, supporting an improving performance of the region’s corporate sector. Read more

Features

Frothy market for craft brewers in SEE, still room for newcomers to hop on board

The report looks into the online image of SEE craft beers – in terms of both sheer popularity and users’ and experts’ opinion of their quality. Read more

Features

Revealing the four personas of digital consumers in Bulgaria and Romania

TNS is a global market research consultancy which advises clients on specific growth strategies around new market entry, innovation, brand switching and stakeholder management, based on long established expertise and market-leading solutions. Read more

Features

Croatia’s INA ousts Romania’s OMV Petrom as SEE top blue chip

The total capitalisation of the nine SEE bourses rose 3.6% in 2015 to 103.6 billion euro, slowing from a 6.1% growth in 2014. Read more

Features

M&A in SEE – strong 2015 followed by activity slowdown

Julian Gikov is Director at Raiffeisen Bank International (RBI), covering Southeast European M&A operations, where he has been involved in deals advisory for the last nine years. He has extensive investment banking experience in the energy, TMT, heavy industry, FMCG, and real … Read more

Features

2014: Tepid recovery in SEE stops short of recharging corporate batteries

Subdued domestic demand and low exports, limited credit growth due to high non-performing loan ratios, market volatility and political uncertainty continued to curb the financial performance of the companies in Southeast Europe (SEE) in 2014. Overdue structural reforms weigh on the economies in the region, which failed to benefit fully from cheaper oil and the recovery of the euro area to offset the downward pressure of the Russia-Ukraine crisis. Read more

Features, Insurance

Lack of economic momentum key challenge for SEE insurers

The insurance companies operating in Southeast Europe (SEE) had to cope with a restrained economic momentum in the region in 2014 when the effects of the financial crisis continued to dampen the recovery of consumer spending and overall business activity. Read more

Features

SEE – Europe’s emerging logistics hotspot

The logistics sector in Southeast Europe (SEE) is relatively underdeveloped as compared to the rest of Europe. However, the region’s location determines its strategic role in trade within the continent, as well as between Europe, the Middle East and Asia. Read more

Features

M&A activity in SEE – improving outlook

2014 was a limited success year for mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in Southeast Europe (SEE), but an analysis of deals already announced in 2015 indicates an improving outlook. In the past couple of years, the M&A activity in most SEE countries suffered to differing degrees from slower economic growth, the small size of the national consumer markets and political instability. Nevertheless, local specifics rather than common features tended to determine the main drivers of M&A in each country. Read more

Features

EuroBillions, or how the EU supports the SEE economies

“EU funds” is a sacred phrase in Southeast Europe (SEE). Overall, it means “hope for higher living standards”, which is actually the ultimate goal of the EU’s Cohesion Policy. Read more

Banking, Features

Corpbank blip aside, SEE banking sector remains stable

Most of the lenders in the SEE TOP 100 banks ranking closed 2014 in the black and the overall result of the sector would have been slightly positive if it hadn’t been for bankrupt Bulgarian lender Corporate Commercial Bank, Corpbank, which booked a staggering loss of 2.18 billion euro. Read more

Features

Romania’s OMV Petrom keeps lead in SEE TOP 100 listed companies ranking despite drop in market capitalisation

The market capitalisation of the SEE TOP 100 listed companies in 2014 rose to 46.08 billion euro, as compared to 44.7 billion euro of the entrants in the ranking a year earlier. Read more

Features

Growth prospects have improved but negative effects of 2008 financial crisis will remain

Economies in Southeast Europe (SEE) now appear to be solidly in recovery mode, after having one of the weakest performances in the last 5 years. Read more

Features

Greece in the eye of the Balkan beholder

This survey monitors sentiment towards the events in Greece in the light of the referendum on accepting or rejecting the agreement with the country’s creditors. Social media comments, blog posts, forum discussions, and comments in news media outlets were analysed to outline public attitudes in eight countries in Southeast Europe (SEE). Read more

Features

Forton: Bulgaria’s retail property market saturated, opportunities abound on office segment in Sofia

The Sofia office market has reached the tipping point from which investment and development offer a sizable opportunity. The retail market, in particular in Sofia and other big cities, is relatively saturated. The industrial real estate market in Bulgaria offers a large field for new project development while the opportunities for investment remain limited. Read more

Business, Features

LAUNCHub: SEE boasts talent-rich startup ecosystem

LAUNCHub is a 9.0 million euro seed fund, based in Bulgaria, investing in the most promising startups in Southeast Europe (SEE). Since 2012, LAUNCHub has invested over 3.5 million euro in 47 portfolio companies. Over 140 founders have joined the big family and in less than two years have managed to attract a further 3.5 million euro-plus of follow-on funding. As of September 2014, LAUNCHub’s portfolio includes companies from nine countries in SEE – Bulgaria, Romania, Slovenia, Croatia, Macedonia, Greece, Ukraine, Austria and Switzerland. Read more

Analysis, Features

Bottomlines under more pressure as competition intensifies

The slow recovery in the European Union, Southeast Europe’s (SEE) main trading partner, the sluggish prospects facing nearly all economies in the region and shrunken domestic demand all left their mark on corporate bottomlines in 2013. At the same time, long overdue structural reforms, fiscal and regulatory volatility and poor infrastructure continued to be a drag on local businesses. Against this backdrop, the performance of the companies in the SEE TOP 100 ranking was expectedly lackluster – their combined revenues in 2013 were flattish, with nearly half of the entrants seeing a decline in their revenues. Read more

Analysis, Features

SEE region’s top 100 listed companies boost capitalisation in 2013

The market capitalisation of the entrants in the 2013 edition of the SEE TOP 100 listed companies ranking totaled 44.7 billion euro, compared to 39 billion euro for the firms that made the 2012 list. Most entrants in the ranking – 65, saw their market capitalisation rise, with 30 posting a decline. Read more