BayWa, Germany’s largest farm cooperative, decided to leave Romanian grain trading market after just two years. Thus, BayWa Agri Romania is entirely taken over by Romanian entrepreneur Victor Benzea who will continue the grain trading activity, sources say.
However, the two silos owned by the company were transferred to the Austrian RWA Raiffeisen Agro.
“We took this decision not only because the market is volatile, but also because the exports did not grow as fast as we estimated in 2015, when we entered,” BayWa officials commented for zf.ro.
The transaction was signed last month, according to data in the Official Gazette. The shares, with nominal value of about RON 10 million, were sold at the symbolic price of EUR 1.
“The importance of the Danube region as a sourcing market for satisfying European demand for agricultural commodities continues to grow,” Klaus Josef Lutz, Chief Executive Officer of BayWa AG, said in 2015, when BayWa established its agribusiness in Romania, after taking over the Romanian agricultural trader Patberg International for EUR 1.2 million.
Lutz has added at the time that with a presence in Romania, BayWa is improving its reach in southeastern Europe.
At that time, BayWa bought 90 percent of the shares, and Beznea, shareholder in Patberg, kept 10 percent. Now, Beznea took over the entire stake, and the company will return to Patberg International.
BayWa Agri Romania registered losses of RON 16.6 million in 2015 and RON 14.4 million last year, although the revenues went up from RON 180.5 million in 2015 to RON 460 million in 2016.