Bertex is not the only company that left Serbia overnight

The Turkish textile company, Bertex, is the tenth foreign investor in Serbia that has abruptly left the country.

These are the foreign companies that also decided to suddenly end their operations in Serbia, leaving their workers without a job or severance pay.


After two months of speculation, the Italian footwear factory, Geox, officially confirmed in early August that it is leaving Vranje. Subsequently, a decision was made to initiate the liquidation and termination of the company. According to the contract with the Serbian government, dating from 2012, Geox received 11.25 million euros in state subsidies, i.e. a subsidy of 9,000 euros per employee for an investment of 15.8 million euros, with the obligation to employ at least 1,250 people.


The last example of a foreign company leaving Serbia was in January of this year, when the Shinwon Company, the second factory that YURA from South Korea opened in Niš in 2011, informed 188 workers via a text message that due to the reduced volume of business, it was unable to extend their job contracts.

Simit Sarayi

Then there is Simit Sarayi, a Turkish bakery chain, that closed all its stores in Belgrade after three years of business. The last three shops, which were located in downtown Belgrade, closed at the beginning of last year allegedly due to COVID.

Home Plus

In late 2021, the Home Plus retail chain also put the key in the lock of their company in Serbia. The owner left more than 100 workers jobless and still owes over 50 million dinars.


When it departed Serbia, the Russian company Spilit left 500 workers, who worked in the company’s two factories in the south and north of Serbia, jobless. A few days after the closing of the factories in Vranje and Sombor, and a total of 34 showrooms, the company’s director also disappeared so the company’s owner, Andrei Hodasevich, had to announce that the company would close.  

He promised workers and his suppliers that he would pay everything the company owed to them, which he did, but the company did not resume its production in Serbia. The owner later claimed that the workers stole a total of 200,000 euros worth of products from the company and that he would sue them.


In November 2018, the German fish processing and canning factory, Servfood, left Serbia after only two years of operations. A dozen workers protested in front of the company’s gate, demanding an explanation because, as they claimed, they were informed in a Viber group that the company was closing. Although, when it came to Serbia, the company said that it would create around 300 new jobs, in the two years of its operations in Serbia, Servfood employed only 60 workers.


The Bulgarian mobile phone and equipment chain, Handy, closed its stores all over Serbia in one day, a total of about 200 of them. About 900 workers were informed about the layoffs in an e-mail.


Another Italian footwear producer, Leonardo, drew attention when, about a year ago, 60 of its workers found out by accident that they were no longer employed in the company, after one of the workers went to see a doctor and found out they no longer had medical insurance (supposed to be paid by the company). At that point, salaries were already late.

However, the factory in Subotica restarted production and re-hired some of the redundant workers.

Gold Exchange

In 2013, the Croatian company Gold Exchange, which deals in the purchase of gold, closed all of its 90 shops in Serbia overnight, leaving 180 employees without their last two salaries. All shops were closed on September 12 of that year, less than a year after the company came to Serbia.

(, 09.11.2022)

This post is also available in: Italiano

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