Call comes ahead of plans to break up group

Call comes ahead of plans to break up group

Creditors of embattled Croatian food manufacturer and retailer Agrokor have been urged to submit claims against the company "in the shortest possible period" and by a "final deadline" of 9 June at the latest.

The call follows the announcement earlier this month that parts of the Agrokor group are set to be broken up and some sold off within a year to help pay down debts in a restructure of the group.

Meanwhile, Agrokor has confirmed it has drawn up proposals for a "new business concept" for the group's Konzum food retail unit in neighbouring Bosnia Herzegovina - by replacing it with Agrokor's Serbia-based grocer brand Mercator.

Ante Ramljak, who was appointed as "receiver" to stabilise the group earlier this year, said the proposal "envisages the reintroduction of the Mercator brand to BIH market" if it is accepted by the Konzum and Mercator management teams.

Ramljak said: "Konzum Bosnia Herzegovina business operations are stable and it is regularly fulfilling all of its obligations, but we have decided to consider a new business concept for the market with the aim of better long-term positioning of Agrokor's retail network and further development in the regional market. It will help further development of the retail market by encouraging competitiveness and will be in the best interest of all customers, employees, suppliers, banks and the state."

Earlier this month, the Croatian Financial Services Supervisory Agency (Hanfa) temporarily halted trading of eight companies belonging to Agrokor following the group's announcement that "potential errors" had been found in the accounts after Ramljak's appointment.