Serbia can expect the modernization of retail sector through acquisitions and new investments in the upcoming period – Miljan Zdrale, the EBRD’s regional head of agribusiness for Central and South-Eastern Europe, said.
“We expect considerable investments and consolidations. This is predictable, as over 50% of local retail is carried out through an informal, traditional sector. The development of modern retail, along with the compliance with market standards implemented in the developed countries of the European Union, can bring benefits to the entire value chain in this sector, from suppliers, the primary production, through logistics and the food industry”, Zdrale said.
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He points out that there are already some indications about the upcoming acquisitions, adding that consolidations are expected to take place, but that “it is still early to talk about it”.
“You can see how seriously Delhaize and Lidl approach their investments”, Zdrale said and added that the resolution of the Agrokor issue in the Western Balkans, especially in Serbia, as their dominant companies were located here, would give a positive impetus to investors.
Zdrale also expects consolidations in the confectionary, meat and cooking oil industry. “There are plenty of companies in these sectors, which makes them inefficient. The EBRD sees room for investments and the development of infrastructure, together with the state, in that segment, as well as, through the creation of innovative products which could be offered through banks to small and medium enterprises, if there’s an interest”, he concluded.
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