The Slovenia Times

Swatycomet Boss Declared Manager of the Year


Merkan, a 46-year-old physics engineer, joined Swatycomet in 2010, in the time of the merger of the Maribor-based Swaty and the Zreče-based Comet.

After the merger, the company was faced with a challenging period and Merkan took over as CEO in early 2013, when Swatycomet's sales stood at EUR 77.5m, return on capital at 1.15%, debt at EUR 23m and value added per employee at EUR 23,400.

Since he took over at the helm of the company, return on capital has risen to 10.8%, while the company's debt decreased by 42%. Added value per employee is also gradually rising and so is investment into staff. Swatycomet annually invests EUR 5m into production.

Last year's profit was eight times higher than in 2012, at EUR 3.4m, while this year it reached EUR 3m already in the first six months. The plan for 2015 is to generate EUR 84m in sales, mostly abroad. Swatycomet exports 94% of its products to 84 countries.

The company from a male-dominated industry also has a high percentage of females (40%) among its 860 employees, including on the senior posts (40%), which is why it also received a special award by the Manager Association.

Today's gathering in Portorož is expected to be attended by 250 managers, who are to discuss the global economic situation and ways to increase profit. Economy Minister Zdravko Počivalšek and Development Minister Alenka Smerkolj will also attend.

The Manager of the Year award has been conferred since 1991 and is considered the most prestigious management honour in Slovenia. Last year it went to Branko Rožič, the boss of cardboard maker Količevo karton.


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