Adria Prime: Index of Croatian and Slovenian Shares Begins

Lauren Simmonds

The common index, called Adria Prime, will consist of five Croatian and nine Slovenian companies from the Prime Market.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Tomislav Pili writes on the 2nd of June, 2019, a record number of participants gathered at sixth investment days of the Slovenian and Croatian capital markets, while the most important features of the two markets were presented to foreign investors.

The event was organised by the Ljubljana and Zagreb Stock Exchange(s), and is conceived as a venue for the meeting of Slovenian, Croatian and international investors, as well as eminent issuers from the Zagreb and Ljubljana Stock Exchange(s) with the aim of providing direct contact between companies and investors.

This year, eight Croatian companies participated: AD Plastik, Arena Hospitality Group, Atlantic, Croatian Telecom, Ina, Podravka, Valamar Riviera and the Zagreb Stock Exchange. The Slovenian ”colours” were represented by seven representatives from Slovenia – Krka, Luka Koper, NLB, Petrol, Pozavarovalnica Sava, Telekom Slovenije and Triglav Group.

28 investment companies and banks participated, representing 63 analysts and investors from European countries including the Czech Republic, Estonia, Croatia, Lithuania, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom, as well as from further afield, across the Atlantic from the United States of America.

Investors reported for a record 338 meetings, and companies will hold 255 meetings. As pointed out by the President of the Zagreb Stock Exchange, Ivan Gažić, the goal is to promote ”top-notch” companies from both markets. As part of this, he announced that on June the 19th, he will begin calculating the Adria Prime index, which will consist of five companies from the Prime Market of the Zagreb Stock Exchange and nine from the Slovenian SBI TOP index. The Slovenian side will not include Mercator or Intereuropa.

Reflecting on the situation on the Slovenian market, the CEO of the Ljubljana Stock Exhange, Aleš Ipavec, said that last year was marked by the departure of Gorenje.

Soon, the Slovenian Government will list another ten percent of the shares of the bank on the Ljubljana Stock Exchange, and Ipavec expressed the hope that several more companies will be available on the stock exchange during this year and next year.

Tea Pevec, director of research at Interkapital Securities, and Davor Špoljar, senior analyst of the capital market at Erste Bank, spoke about the prospects of the Slovenian and Croatian markets. In terms of the view of the Slovenian market, Pevec started with a macroeconomic review, pointing out that the Slovenian economy has experienced impressive GDP growth over the last two years, which was four percent above the European average.

Growth is also expected for this year and for next year, primarily due to the slowdown in exports to leading foreign trade partners, notably Germany. Regarding the inflation rate in Slovenia, it is comparable to that of the EU, Pevec pointed out.

She also emphasised the dynamics of Slovenia’s declining public debt, which was also positively influenced by the growth of the economy, and predicted that by 2021, Slovenia’s public debt would fall to 60 percent of GDP.

The Slovenian capital market is larger than the Croatian, Serbian and Bulgarian markets, and in the last five years, the SBI TOP index has grown by a significant eighteen percent, which is more than the average of fourteen percent of the comparable markets.

Croatia’s Davor Špoljar pointed out that the crisis in Agrokor (now Fortenova) halted Croatia’s market recovery, but the Croatian tourism sector has fared well in terms of the best stock market result. He also stressed that the market structure has changed over the last five years. While five years ago tourist shares held a mere two percent of the share of such ”traffic”, they now account for a massive thorty percent.

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