European Bank Signs Largest Equity Participation in Tourism Sector

D-Marin Dalmacija is the largest marina in Croatia

May 31, 2018//-In its largest equity investment in the tourism sector to date, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has signed investment agreements to become a shareholder in D Marinas B.V., the holding company for a network of currently 10 marinas in CroatiaGreece and Turkey, operating under the brand name D-Marin.

The EBRD is investing €70 million for a stake of approximately 25 per cent. The funds will be used to finance the company’s growth plans, including the development of marina management operations, further acquisitions and deleveraging.

D Marinas B.V. is the largest and only international chain of marinas in the Eastern Mediterranean offering approximately 8,000 berths. The company’s ultimate beneficial owner is Doğuş Holding A.S., one of Turkey’s leading business conglomerates and a long-standing partner of the EBRD.

The company’s expansion will support the development of the local tourism sector, promote growth and create jobs. Technical cooperation funds provided by the EBRD Shareholder Special Fund will be used to finance training programmes and work-based learning opportunities for young people and women.

The investment comes under the new EBRD Inclusive Tourism Framework for the Eastern Mediterranean which aims to support local tourism sectors to grow and upgrade through investments in hotels and tourism operators.

EBRD First Vice President Jurgen Rigterink signed the investment in Zagreb today and said: “With this investment the EBRD is demonstrating its long-term commitment to supporting the progress of Croatia’s economy. Tourism is a major driver of growth for the country and we expect this investment to open up new opportunities for local businesses as well as create new jobs. The beginning of the tourism season is the right time to sign such an important investment where the EBRD can provide much-needed capital for the next steps of development in the tourism sector which is so important for Croatia, Greece and Turkey.”

Ferit F. Şahenk, Chairman of the Board of Doğuş Group, said the partnership highlighted Turkey’s efforts and success in terms of becoming a world renowned brand.

He added “We are proud that Doğuş Group’s long-term strategy of investing in the tourism and specifically the marina business has been recognised by such an important institution such as the EBRD. This agreement is testament to D Marinas’ success, especially in the Eastern Mediterranean basin where the potential for tourism is still rising and accordingly our strategy is to expand further in the region.

I hope that we will continue to look for other valuable investments with the EBRD in and around Turkey. This agreement also underscores the great progress that Turkish businesses have made in recent years globally. I believe our partnership will contribute positively to the cooperation between all sides and create a constructive momentum and motivation for the Turkish business community. I would like to thank both the EBRD for the trust they have shown in us and also my colleagues at Doğuş Group for their substantial support.”

The EBRD signed its first project in Croatia in 1994 and has invested over €3.6 billion in 198 projects in the country to date. The Bank’s activities cover all areas of the economy but are especially strong in the infrastructure, corporate, financial institutions and energy sectors. The EBRD is also engaged in policy dialogue, capital market development and regulatory reform.

By Axel  Reiserer

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