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Fund management: AC-Nalozbe blazes a trail

If you’re looking to generate high returns on your equity investments then forget western Europe; the western Balkans is where the real action is.

Friends reunited: getting back together

Private equity: Balkan funds take small steps

Stock exchanges: Zagreb puts its best foot forward

Blaz Pesjak, AC-Nalozbe “The western Balkan markets are very undervalued compared with Bulgaria and Romania”
Blaz Pesjak, AC-Nalozbe

That’s the trenchant opinion of Blaz Pesjak, chairman of the management board of Slovenian closed-end investment company AC-Nalozbe, for whom the emerging economies of Albania, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro, the Republika Srpska and Serbia represent a land of opportunity.

The firm is an affiliate of Autocommerce, a diversified conglomerate with more than 2,500 employees whose core businesses include car dealerships, business hotels, motor homes, investment banking and information technology. In 2006 Autocommerce, which listed on the Ljubljana Stock Exchange in January, is forecast to generate a net profit of Tr3 billion ($16.7 million) on revenues of Tr142 billion.

With 20 professionals based in both Ljubljana and Belgrade, AC-Nalozbe has about €50 million under management – small beer by global standards, perhaps, but a sizeable sum in the context of the western Balkan equity markets, where average daily turnover on any of the region’s bourses can often be less than €1 million.

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