Financial Industrial Group REI Holding JSC (REI Holding) is one of the first holding structures in Bulgaria founded with private capital. Currently the group unites more than 50 companies in Bulgaria and abroad. REI Holding works in a wide range of activities in the fields of manufacturing, construction, trade, transport, education, tourism, culture, agriculture and financial management.
The first REI company was founded in 1990 as a Limited Liability Company (REI Ltd). In the period of 1990-1995, the company’s main activities included production and trade of non-ferrous metals, cables and wires, electrical goods and machinery, spare parts and equipment for the railway industry, metal constructions and hydraulics.
In 1993, the company was restructured to a holding company with 11 subsidiaries and strong management, administrative, accounting and legal teams. During this period, partnerships were established with companies in Russia, Ukraine, Germany, Austria and Greece.
In the period of 1995-2003, REI Holding actively participated in the privatisation in Bulgaria. Its main investments were in the electrical, railway and machine building industry. In this period REI Holding acquired controlling stakes in a number of factories – the main ones are listed below:
ENERGOCABEL PLC, Sofia, Bulgaria, (established in 1919) was the sole Bulgarian producer of aluminium and copper wire rod, aluminium conductors steel reinforced (ACSR) and all types of aluminium and hard drawn copper conductors. The factory held a strategic position in the Bulgarian electrical industry as the only producer of wire rod for all Bulgarian cable & wire manufacturers. Approximately 45% of the production was exported to Ukraine, Lithuania, Latvia, Poland, Germany, France, Greece, Turkey, Yugoslavia, Macedonia, Lebanon, Egypt, Nigeria, Pakistan, India and other Middle and Far East countries. The company products complied with the requirements of the relevant IEC, DIN VDE, BS, ASTM, ELOT, MIL, GOST, NFC, CSA standards. The main production lines were from SOUTHWIRE (USA) and CORTINOVIS (Italy). REI successfully exited this investment in the beginning of 2003.
GAMACABLE PLC – Smolyan, Bulgaria, was one of the main manufacturers of cables and conductorsin Bulgaria with state-of-the-art equipment for the production of installation conductors, halogen free, telecommunication, radio-frequency and control cables. More than 70% of the production of the factory was export oriented to Greece, Germany, France, Belgium, Austria, Macedonia, Albania, Russia, Africa and Asia. REI exited this investment in 2007.
ELPROM TRAFO SN PLC – Kyustendil, Bulgaria, was the sole Bulgarian manufacturer of oil-immersed distribution transformers (from 6 to 36 kV and power rates up to 1600 kV). The product range included specifically designed models for operation under tropical climate, dual-voltage 15-20 kV, 11133 kV, with double low voltage coils 400-231 V. Approximately 60% of the production was exported to the Middle East, Africa and South America. The design process was completely computerised. Quality was guaranteed through an accredited high-voltage laboratory with SIEMENS equipment. The transformers complied with the requirements of the relevant IEC standards. The major production lines were made by GEORG (Germany).
EAZ PLC – Plovdiv, Bulgaria, was the leading national manufacturer of low voltage apparatus and complete electrical equipment – motor starters, automatic screw circuit breakers, automatic relay regulators, switchboards, etc. Approximately 50% of the production was exported to Greece, Lebanon, Nigeria, Ghana, Sudan, Pakistan, Uruguay and other countries from the Middle East, Africa and South America. The production lines were made by BUCHER, SCHULER and SCHLATER’ and WAFIOS (Germany). REI Holding exited this investment in 2006
HELLECON SA – Kilkis, Greece, was founded in 1999. REI Holding invested in a green field project for the production of enameled copper wires with the last generation of horizontal and vertical computerized production lines made by MAG (Austria). The factory was sold to a Greek investor in 2004
LOCOMOTIVE AND WAGON PLANT JSC – Rousse, Bulgaria, was the giant in the railway industry in Bulgaria. The factory was specialised in the repair of diesel locomotives, electric trains and other specialised vehicles, freight cars and spare parts for them.
WAGON-REPAIR PLANT JSC – Karlovo, Bulgaria, was the biggest plant in Bulgaria for repair of all kinds of opened and covered freight and mail wagons, wagon containers, dry-bulk containers, tanks, etc. The plant was authorized to repair cars with special requirements for transportation of dangerous cargo.
REPAIR AND REHABILITATION COMPANY KOEHNE JSC – Sofia, Bulgaria, was a construction company specialized in the repair, maintenance and new construction of the railway tracks, tunnels, bridges and other railway facilities, renovation and repair of railway machines and other railway equipment.
WAGON REPAIR PLANT – LEVSKI JSC, Levski, Bulgaria, specialized in the repair of passenger wagons, luggage van, mail van, baggage-and-mail wagons and freight wagons.
NATIONAL TRANSPORT RESEARCH INSTITUTE LTD, Sofia, Bulgaria, was a company focused on testing and certification of the rolling railway stock, the superstructure of the railway track and its facilities. The Institute developed and implemented new technologies and technical solutions in the field of operation, repair and maintenance of the railway transport.
METALIC PLC – Yablanitza, Bulgaria was specialized in metal and wood processing.
REI LIFT LTD, Sofia, Bulgaria, activities included design, production, installation and maintenance of heavy-duty hydraulic elevators, including passenger, cargo, garage and special-application models. Among their distinguishing characteristics were the modern design, low weight and noise level, high automation and low operating costs.
Subsidiaries of REI Holding during this period were many other companies in the sector of insurance, tourism, information technologies, construction, media, agriculture and trade. Companies from the group built warehouses and manufacturing facilities and offices in over 30 cities in Bulgaria. According to the Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce from 1999, REI Holding ranks second after Bulgartabac Holding among 50 economic groups in Bulgaria that have been ranked by revenues in 1998. During this period, REI Holding employed ca. 4000 workers.
The period of 2003 to 2008 period is associated with a major restructuring of the activities of the group. Based on a thorough analysis of the economic and financial environment, following the accession of Bulgaria to the European Union and associated structural reforms the shareholders of REI Holding decided to make significant changes in the activities of the group. Most of production facilities were sold while other activities were restructured. A substantial part of the proceedings from the sales were reinvested in real estate.
Since 2008, REI Holding focused on project financing along the structural funds of the European Union. REI Holding established a number of new companies in the field of consultancy, project management, accounting and financial services. These companies participated in:
Municipal projects in Bulgaria in the fields of environment protection, water supply, local road infrastructure, municipal buildings and facilities (30 projects)
Trans-border cooperation with Serbia, Macedonia, Greece, Romania in the fields of protection, management and promotion of the environmental and cultural resources, education and tourism (8 projects)
Considerable investments have been made in agriculture as well– mainly in goat and sheep breeding.
REI HOLDING has a modern and dynamic management structure, combining tradition, experience and innovation based on a consumer-oriented corporate policy
REI HOLDING is focusing on raising its activities to a higher level through transfer of know-how and technologies, establishing of joint-ventures, participation in bi- or multilateral international projects and programs.