Investment of the equivalent amount of DM 50 million in convertible shares of Podravka d.d, food conglomerate based in Koprivnica, Croatia.
The objective of the project is to support the restructuring of the company by financing an important investment for the company's core business. Proceeds will be used to build a plant for the production of Vegeta seasoning.
Focusing on profitability and on sound corporate governance will allow the company to successfully implement the restructuring and to achieve a listing on an international stock exchange. This will enhance private ownership, support the privatisation process and contribute to the development of the still fledgling capital market.
The Podravka Group is one of the largest food processing companies in central and eastern Europe. Production of food additives, dehydrated soups, baby food and pharmaceuticals generated a turnover of over DM 660 million in 1997 (ECU 335 million). The company is refocusing its operations on its most profitable products, refinancing its debt, streamlining its core businesses and rationalising its non-core activities.
Purchase of convertible shares, for an amount equivalent to DM 50 million (ECU 25.2 million).
The total capital expenditure plan amounts to DM 300 million (ECU 152 million).
The project was screened as B/1, requiring an environmental analysis of the proposed development and an environmental audit of the existing facilities. Environmental due diligence was conducted by independent consultants according to terms of reference provided by the Bank. The due diligence covered all the company's and its subsidiaries' facilities in Croatia.
The proposed development would result in significant environmental benefits through the introduction of a modern process technology with better resource efficiency, improving energy or water consumption, and environmental protection as a result of control of waste water discharge. The environmental due diligence did not raise any significant concerns. All the company's operations were found to be in compliance with applicable Croatian regulations on environment and health and safety with the exception of waste-water treatment and discharge from the Koprivnica complex. Based on the findings of the environmental audit and the analysis, a detailed Environmental Action Plan (EAP) has been developed and agreed with the company. The EAP, which includes actions for each site individually, will address all issues identified during the due diligence, including the issue of non-compliance with waste-water discharge, and ensure that all facilities under the control of the company comply with applicable Croatian and European Union environmental standards. As part of the EAP, the company will also be developing a system for environmental management at the corporate level, based on ISO 14000.
Podravka will be required to report periodically to the Bank on environment and health and safety matters, in particular on the implementation of the EAP and immediate notification on any incident or accident with significant material damage or other environmental consequences.
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Text of the PIP