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26 June 2018

4th Western Balkans Purchasing Initiative reports a record number of B2B meetings, signalling growing interest among German companies

Press release

As the owner of a Germany-based group of banks and one of the main supporters of the networking event, ProCredit Holding is very pleased with the turnout and emphasises the networking opportunities of the purchasing conference, which is designed to connect buyers from Germany with potential suppliers from the Western Balkans.

26 June 2018 - As part of the 4th Western Balkans Purchasing Initiative held in Frankfurt, Germany on Tuesday, 19 June 2018, more than 500 B2B meetings took place between German buyers and potential suppliers from the Western Balkan countries “We welcome this initiative, as it provides new business opportunities for SMEs in the countries in which we operate. This was our third time partnering with this event, because its intention matches our commitment to the region and our strategy of fostering growth in the SME sector in South Eastern and Eastern Europe”, commented Borislav Kostadinov, member of the management of ProCredit Holding AG & Co. KGaA.

This year, companies from the entire region came to Frankfurt to take part in the networking event. Suppliers from Croatia, Slovenia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania, Kosovo, Montenegro and Macedonia were selected, evaluated and invited to B2B meetings at the Frankfurt Chamber of Commerce (IHK). According to the BME, the Bundesverband Materialwirtschaft, Einkauf und Logistik e.V. (Association for Supply Chain Management, Procurement and Logistics), 125 companies met the requirements of German buyers in 2016; last year it was 135 companies. This year, as many as 156 companies from the Western Balkan region were approved for matchmaking. “This is the largest number of B2B meetings that the BME and the network of German Chambers of Commerce have ever organised with the Western Balkans,” said Dr. Silvius Grobosch, Managing Director of the BME, “The Initiative gives both the countries in this region and the German economy many competitive advantages,” he stated in a press release published by the BME on 19 June 2018.

The project was initiated in 2014 as part of the Western Balkans Conference of Ministers for Economic Affairs. The first conference was launched in Munich in 2015. After Dortmund (2016) and Belgrade (2017), the 4th Western Balkans Purchasing Initiative was once again held in Germany this year. It was organised by the BME on behalf of the Bundesministerium für wirtschaftliche Zusammenarbeit und Entwicklung (BMZ - Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development) and in cooperation with the Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Energie (BMWi - Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy) as well as the DIHK (German Chamber of Commerce and Trade). The event was hosted by the IHK in Frankfurt and supported by ProCredit Holding, the parent company of the ProCredit banks, which are predominantly active in South Eastern and Eastern Europe, including the Western Balkan countries of Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia and Serbia. “As of the end of March 2018, around 45% of our assets came from our five banks in the Western Balkans. Obviously, the region is important for us,” Mr. Kostadinov added.

About ProCredit Bank Albania

ProCredit Bank is a development-oriented bank focused on SMEs. It is 100% owned by ProCredit Holding, based in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. ProCredit Bank Albania has been focusing on developing its electronic services infrastructure in order to provide modern banking services that meet the needs of the customers as efficiently as possible. It is rated “BB-” by the international agency Fitch Ratings, and is being supervised by German authorities, the Bundesbank and BaFin, which ensure the reliability and sustainability of this bank.