GREEK CAPITALS ENTER UNITED DAIRY COMPANY
The Black Sea Venture Capital Fund, managed by Global Finance, will invest almost BGN10MN in United Dairt Company AD (UDC). Against that amount the fund will acquire a substantial share of the top Bulgarian company for milk processing. UDC is a leader on the domestic market of fresh milk for drinking, cheese and yellow cheese. It owns the trade marks Vereya, Fibella, and Roussalka. UDC has a share in Dairy Industry of Vratsa and in Simco AD, which are in liquidation procedures. The company owned another four enterprises in Plovdiv, Stara Zagora, and Shoumen. According to the accounting report for 2001, UDC has losses of BGN401,000 for previous periods, and its 2001 profit was BGN916,000.The investment of the Black Sea Venture Capital Fund will be effected through a capital raise of UDC's equity. The decision for that was made at the company's general meeting on Thursay (March 27). UDC's majority owner Doverie Capital AD is a holding company within the group of Doverie United Holding AD and owns 83,49% of the capaital of the pharmaceutical enterprise Medica AD of Sandanski. It also holds majority stakes in the Mr Bricolage chain of shops in Bulgaria and in Office BG, the first local INTERNET shop for office equipment.The Greek Global Finance manages several venture capital funds in Central and Eastern Europe with a portfolio of about USD400MN. It has two funds in Bulgaria - Euromerchan Balkan Fund (which has invested USD27MN), and Black Sea Venture Capital Fund (whose portfolio is USD100MN). According to Global Finance data, half of the money has been invested in Bulgarian enterprise. Flobal Finance has been operating in Bulgaria since 1995. On the local market the Greek company's structures hold stakes in the croissans producer Chippita, in the fast-food chain Goody's, in the glass-maker Drouzhba AD of Plovdiv (into which Stind has recently merged), in the manufacturer of aluminium joinery Steelmet, and in the well-known ice-cream company Delta. Global Finance also holds part of the shares in the fas-food chain Goodie's.The company's head office is in Athens announced recently plans for setting up a third fund for development of small and medium-sized enterprises, which will be investing mainly in Bulgaria and Romania. After registering the newly issued shares, Global Finance and UDC's so far majority owner Doverie Capital will be jointly managing the company as partners. According to the Agis Hiliarhopoulos, Investment Manager of Global Finance, their share participation will be 50:50. UDC's Executive Director Trayan Haladjov will retain his position and Andrei Evtimov will chair the Management Board.