Industry, commerce and agribusiness

Combining agribusiness skills with EBRD expertise

Morocco: Combining agribusiness skills with EBRD expertise


In November 2013, the EBRD signed a €3.6 million mezzanine loan to Citruma, a leading Moroccan juice producer, in the first agribusiness transaction with a locally-owned company in the SEMED region. By providing industry knowledge from international experts, The Bank’s Direct Company Assistance (DCA) programme helped Citruma develop their product quality, strengthen brand equity and cut production costs and was crucial in preparing for this transaction.

The DCA programme, in this instance funded through the EU Neighbourhood Investment Facility, enables companies seeking Bank financing in the agribusiness sector to receive technical assistance from international experts. In the case of Citruma, two advisers helped the company strengthen its brand, improve product quality and develop new products to expand their range. They also assisted Citruma in improving operations by cutting production costs and increasing margins and sales volumes on both domestic and foreign markets.

The EBRD loan is part of a €4.9 million growth plan to expand the company’s operations and strengthen its equity base. This kind of mezzanine investment complements the debt offering of Moroccan banks and presents an alternative structure to straight equity that is particularly applicable to SME investments.

Enhancing the agricultural value chain

Serbia: Enhancing the agricultural value chain


By making a €50 million equity investment in MK Group, which is part of the Agri Europe holding company, the EBRD is helping one of the leading agribusiness companies in the region to expand its farming and meat processing operations in Serbia.

More specifically, the project will enable MK Group to finance an irrigation system, silo construction and the acquisition of additional agricultural land. By facilitating third party access to storage facilities, the project also supports small farmers and addresses key infrastructure bottlenecks in Serbia.

With regard to technical cooperation, MK Group is engaged in policy dialogue activities with the EBRD, the Serbian government and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) to establish a crop receipt law that can facilitate pre-harvest financing. Moreover, Carnex – another company in the Agri Europe group – is involved in a joint EBRD-FAO Geographical Indication initiative in Serbia, to enhance the global recognition and competitiveness of local meat products.

Stregthening Corporate Governance in Agribusiness

Eygpt: Strengthening corporate governance in agribusiness


A local currency loan in 2013 of up to E£ 500 million (€52 million equivalent) to leading dairy and fruit juice producer Juhayna Food Industries marked the EBRD’s first agribusiness deal in Egypt.

The investment will help Juhayna expand its dairy and juice processing capacity, develop new products and boost its distribution network in a bid to match the fast growth in demand among Egyptian consumers for milk, yoghurt and fruit juice.

The project will benefit Juhayna’s suppliers by creating more demand for their output. Furthermore, a donor-funded technical cooperation (TC) project will provide training for 85 dairy farmers who are under supply contracts with the company. This will help them improve health and safety standards, milking techniques and feed production.

As well as stimulating competition in the sector, the EBRD loan will raise corporate governance standards in the country’s agribusiness sector. As a condition of the investment, Juhayna has agreed to implement an environmental and social action plan and to ensure its management systems meet international standards.

Boosting Production Capacity

Azerbaijan: Boosting production capacity

Manufacturing and services

Gedebey Mineral Sulari, one of the leading bottled water producers in Azerbaijan, is using a €4.6 million EBRD loan to boost its production capacity and improve its distribution network.

The privately-owned company was established as a start-up in 2010 and is based in a part of Azerbaijan famous for the medicinal qualities of its water. Gedebey will use the EBRD financing to purchase modern bottle-filling equipment and increase output in response to the fast-growing demand among Azeri consumers for bottled water.

The EBRD’s ETC Fund provided financing for the company to conduct market research and strategic analysis and consult on legal and marketing issues. The technical cooperation project was important in enabling Gedebey to secure the EBRD loan.

Modernising production

Croatia and Russia: Upgrading plants and machinery for the metals industry

Manufacturing and services

In 2013, the EBRD signed investments with Italian company Danieli aimed at restarting production at a steel factory in the Croatian city of Sisak and building a greenfield machinery plant in Russia.

Danieli owns Sisak Ironworks through its steel subsidiary ABS and has launched a restructuring and modernisation programme, which in 2013 benefited from a €20 million EBRD loan. As well as helping to restore the plant’s production capacity, the investment is expected to result in significant environmental, energy and resource efficiencies and cut greenhouse gas emissions. The project will also boost local research and development capacity, introduce Sisak’s employees to innovative technology and provide them with training.

In Russia, the EBRD is providing financing for the construction, equipment and commissioning of a machinery plant in the city of Dzerzhinsk in the Nizhny Novgorod oblast. Danieli, which owns the site, is a leading global producer of machinery and plants for the metals industry.

Through this project, the Bank is supporting the modernisation of the metals industry in Russia’s regions. The plant will also benefit from Danieli’s expertise in improving energy and cost efficiencies and limiting environmental impact.

Modernising machinery

Turkey: Modernising machinery manufacture

Manufacturing and services

In 2013, TürkTraktör, one of the country’s leading manufacturers of farm tractors and other agricultural machinery, received €75 million in financing arranged by the Bank, including a €30 million senior loan from the EBRD and up to €45 million syndicated to commercial banks.

The company will use the loan to modernise its plant in Ankara and build a brand new plant in Sakarya province east of Istanbul. The EBRD financing will also support research and development and engineering support from TürkTraktör’s shareholder CNH Global, an Illinois-based manufacturer of agricultural equipment. This will enable the company to build better engines and tractors for more sustainable agriculture in the country and abroad. TürkTraktör will then pass this technological expertise to local suppliers of tractor parts in a move to improve manufacturing practices and quality standards across the sector.

Developing export potential for small enterprises

Kyrgyz Republic: Developing export potential for small enterprises

Manufacturing and services

Lina Ltd began its cooperation with the EBRD in 2011 when the Bank provided a US$ 650,000 loan (€471,000 equivalent) to finance the company’s expansion plans and make health and safety improvements.

Founded in 1993, this mattress and furniture producer from the Kyrgyz Republic now produces more than 40 different products, well known on Kyrgyz, Kazakh and Russian markets.

To develop their export potential, Lina needed external expertise to improve the fire retardant standards of their mattresses. In 2013, under the export promotion initiative of the EBRD’s Small Business Support, funded by the United States, Lina worked with an international expert to improve the quality of their mattresses.

After extensive tests confirmed the new product was both safe and effective, Lina applied for and won a procurement contract with the US government to supply 3,000 mattresses. Since the project began in May 2013, Lina has seen its turnover rise substantially and has increased staff numbers by 13 per cent.

Creating equal opportunities for employment

Jordan: Creating equal opportunities for employment

Property and tourism

A plan to revitalise the centre of Amman and give its citizens a focal point for leisure and retail activities will also provide unemployed young people with much-needed training and work placement opportunities.

In 2013, the EBRD extended a US$ 80 million (€58 million equivalent) loan to help finance the construction of the Abdali Retail and Entertainment Centre, which will act as a focus for the Abdali Urban Regeneration Project in the Jordanian capital.

Innovative design will see the facility use natural cooling and lighting and maximise water and energy efficiency. As a result, it will consume 25 per cent less energy than comparable retail buildings in Jordan, setting an example for the country’s construction sector. The centre is expected to employ some 2,000 people during its building phase and a similar number once it is open.

As part of the project, the owners of the centre will offer young men and women work placements and training schemes in retail, facilities management and related services. Jordan has one of the region’s highest rates of young people not engaged in education, employment or training (23 per cent) while women make up only 17.6 per cent of the national workforce.

Reducing energy costs

Romania: Reducing energy costs

Small business

The EBRD Small Business Support (SBS) team helped Mecanex, a pump and iron-casting manufacturer develop a plan to reduce energy consumption and upgrade production equipment. In implementing the plan, the company cut its electricity consumption by 12 per cent and its natural gas consumption by 2 per cent, saving the equivalent of €20,000 annually in energy costs.

Founded in 1972 in Botoşani in northern Romania, Mecanex is now the second-largest pump manufacturer in the country. This kind of manufacturing is traditionally very energy-intensive. With funding from Austria, SBS helped Mecanex connect with Quartz Matrix SRL, a local consultancy that could help the manufacturer better manage its energy use.

The consultant performed an energy audit and developed recommendations on capital repairs, cost-effective new equipment and changes Mecanex could make to its industrial processes. A year after the project, the company has increased production by 26 per cent.

Supporting women in business

Bosnia and Herzegovina: Supporting women in business

Small business

Herbal products company Faveda is owned by women and is one of the three largest firms of its kind in Bosnia and Herzegovina, producing more than 2.5 tonnes of dried herbs a year. The EBRD’s Small Business Support team helped Faveda change its marketing, target younger consumers and increase sales.

With donor funding from Luxembourg, SBS connected Faveda with a local consultant, who helped the company redesign its packaging and logo, produce promotional items, improve its retail space and create a new web site enabling customers to make online purchases.

These developments helped open up Faveda’s products to a much wider range of customers. For instance, the company moved into new markets in Turkey and expanded its exports to Kosovo. In 2013, turnover increased by 25 per cent, exports by 10 per cent and Faveda was in negotiations to supply a large retailer in Denmark.

Funding the expansion of telecommunications

Romania: Funding the expansion of telecommunications


A €75 million EBRD senior loan to COSMOTE Romania, the country’s third-largest mobile phone operator with 6.3 million subscribers, will enable the company to finance the growth of its broadband infrastructure. COSMOTE will use the financing to fund the expansion of its 4G network and renew its existing spectrum licences.

The project supports the syndication market for Romanian operations as it includes a B loan of €150 million with seven commercial banks.

The operation promotes greater competition in the Romanian telecoms sector and increased access to high-speed broadband infrastructure in Romania, where broadband penetration lags behind the EU average.

In Numbers

EBRD annual Bank investment by sector, 2013

Industry ABI
  • Industry, commerce and agribusiness 31%
  • Financial institutions 28%
  • Energy 21%
  • Infrastructure 20%

Industry, commerce and agribusiness: annual Bank investment by subsector

Industry subsector
  • Agribusiness 33%
  • Manufacturing and services 33%
  • Equity funds 13%
  • Information and communication technologies 12%
  • Property and tourism 9%

Key facts about our work in this sector
[table class=””][attr colspan=”1″] “The EBRD committed a total of €871 million through 54 transactions in agribusiness, while mobilising an additional €110 million in commercial syndication.”

“The Bank is committed to reaching out to small and medium-sized enterprises – over half of its transactions in the manufacturing and services sector were for less than €10 million.”

“In the southern and eastern Mediterranean region, four EBRD agribusiness projects exceeded an aggregate commitment of €60 million.”

“During the year, the Bank committed €334 million to 10 private equity funds.”

€307 million was invested in nine information and communications technology projects across the EBRD region.”

2013 saw a total of €240 million invested in 13 property and tourism projects in Bulgaria, Croatia, Georgia, Jordan, Poland, Romania, Serbia and Ukraine.”

“The EBRD’s Small Business Support team undertook 330 projects providing medium-sized enterprises with the industry expertise of international advisers.”

About this report

The EBRD’s Annual Report 2013 provides a comprehensive overview of our activities and achievements in the countries where we invest.

The report demonstrates that, amid economic turbulence and the deterioration of economies, the EBRD remains a strong, resilient and trusted partner.

It describes the transition impact of the Bank’s investments, projects and policy work, highlights its innovation in key sectors and geographical initiatives, and shows how the EBRD continues to promote sustainable growth and recovery.

Who we are

The EBRD is investing in changing people’s lives and environments across a region that stretches from central Europe to Central Asia, the Western Balkans and the southern and eastern Mediterranean.

Working together with the private sector, we invest in projects, engage in policy dialogue and provide technical advice that fosters innovation and builds sustainable and open-market economies.

What we do

We provide funds for well-structured, financially robust projects of all sizes (including many small businesses), both directly and through financial intermediaries such as local banks and investment funds. The Bank works mainly with private sector clients, but also finances municipal entities and publicly owned companies.

Our principal financing instruments are loans, equity investments and guarantees. We maintain close policy dialogue with governments, authorities, international financial institutions, and representatives of civil society, and provide targeted technical assistance using funds donated by member governments and institutions.


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