The Slovenia Times

Poultry producer Perutnina Ptuj sold to Ukraine's MHP


SIJ said in a press release on Tuesday that the contract refers to the 90.70% stake in Perutnina it owns directly or indirectly, but did not disclose the price.

SIJ, the Ljubljana-based Russian-owned group, believes this will enable the Ptuj-based poultry group to strengthen its position in the Balkans and Eastern Europe.

The Ukrainian holding presented its plans for the largest Slovenian food processing company last week, announcing investments of EUR 200m in four to five years.

MHP said it wanted to invest in Perutnina's development and technology as well as its brands.

The holding plans the first investments for 2019, for which purpose the management has already approved EUR 60m.

Speaking to the press in Ptuj last week, its non-executive director John Rich said the investments were key to implement Perutnina's strategic plan, which envisages further development of existing products and strong brand names as well as growth in Slovenia and the region.

Rich also met local poultry producers, who were happy with MHP's plans.

However, only a day later, its French rival LDC called a news conference in Ljubljana to point to the Ukrainians' allegedly problematic practices in the EU market.

LDC said Ukrainian poultry producers were benefiting from low production costs and were increasing poultry meat exports to the EU while abusing the free trade agreement between the EU and Ukraine.

LDC, which had also been in talks with SIJ to acquire Perutnina, urged Slovenian authorities to take into consideration protection of consumers, farmers and employees as well as competition rules before deciding to sell to MHP.

Perutnina shareholders will meet for an extraordinary meeting on 20 December to replace five representatives of the capital on the supervisory board.

Among the five candidates is also MHP Holding's executive director and CFO Viktoria Kapeliushna.

Perutnina generated EUR 257m in revenue last year, up 4.8% from 2016, while EBITDA dropped by 5.3% to EUR 24.4m.

Net sales revenue in the first half of 2018 was up by 7% year-on-year to EUR 132m. The group employs 3,600 workers.


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