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MK Group d.o.o.: Company that marked the decade

Miodrag Kostic: “99% of success is to work, and 1% talent”

20. August 2011. | 10:18

Source: Emg.rs

Author: Nikos D. A. Arvanites

Among the globally renowned and respected organizations, one could find MK Group, a Serbian firm, which turns into gold everything it touches. EMG.rs presents the qualities one needs to obtain, in order to build, a holding, active in several, completely different, industries, consisting at present of 35 companies, hiring more than 5,000 Employees.

The Club of Business Journalists of Serbia ,recently, declared , Miodrag Kostic's MK Group d.o.o. Beograd the Company of the Decade. One year ago, Mr Miodrag Kostić, Chairman, President and Director of MK Group d.o.o. Beograd was elected the Businessman of the Year by an expert selection jury of the Belgrade Chamber of Commerce.

Mr Miodrag Kostic, of which company was declared the Company of the Decade, said to the EMG.rs that MK Group had come out of the crisis and that it constantly worked on reduction of the unemployment rate in Serbia by hiring new workers, young people in particular.

Mr. Miodrag Kostić, Chairman, President and Director of MK Group d.o.o. Beograd. , said that the biggest problem for Serbian economy in 2011 would be unemployment, emphasizing that the state should provide support to a part of economy which produces for export.

"It will be hard this year, economy needs help, particularly to state part of economy. We don"t have that kind of efficiency , which is necessary to export more, that part of economy , which does not have strenght to export, it will certainly need help." Mr Kostic said.

"Salvation of Serbia is in export, I think that agricultrural production is export opportunity of Serbia, but I think that it was not recognized as the main export change in the budget for 2011 either. ", he said, adding that "it"s still not to late to change it ."

What great qualities one needs to obtain, in order to build, during 20 years of time only, a holding, active in several, completely different, industries, consisting at present of 35 companies, hiring more than 5,000 Employees?

“Every successful man I know repeated what we sound like a platitude, but in fact is a great truth: 99% of success is to work, and 1% talent” - says Mr. Miodrag Kostić, Chairman, President and Director of MK Group d.o.o. Beograd.

Defining success, Mr. Kostić says that “it is a relative thing (…) All these years we have built a system, built the company, positioned in the country, region and beyond, and frankly, only now expect to achieve the greatest results. To achieve the result is not easy, but to keep it and run it, is many times more difficult. We exist and maybe I consider that as a highest value. “It is important that people believe in themselves, and their capability, that they have no self – censorship and do not set limits for themselves” - summarizes Mr. Kostić. As the MK Group's example show, everything is possible.

MK GROUP: 20-year long history of success

MK Group is a holding company, one of the most successful business systems in Serbia, comprising more than 35 related companies operating in the country and abroad. MK group has a more than 20-year long history of success. The Holding is headquartered in Belgrade, and related companies are located across Vojvodina and Serbia. Since 2006, the Company has been expanding its operations to the countries of the region, such as Ukraine, Russia and Belarus.

Its major focus is on agricultural production, industry and trade in agricultural products. Companies within MK Group are among the most successful local companies and leading producers and exporters of sugar, wheat, maize, soy, barley, rapeseed, fodder, etc.

Yet already in 1989 MK Commerce was founded, with headquarters in Vojvodina, Serbia's most important agricultural region. Consecutive years saw a continuous, rapid development, expansion not only to other markets, but also the diversification of business activity, huge investments in various sectors of, rising after a period of communist stagnation, Serbian economy.

In 2002 for the first time appears the name MK Group – this is the beginning of a holding, which is known worldwide today not only as one of Europe's largest manufacturers and exporters of food, but also as a company offering financial and IT services, operating in the real estates market, present in the tourism and implementing solutions, necessary for the environmental policy.

MK Group has the infrastructure required for successful and modern operations in its respective areas of business, and its assets include tens of thousands of hectares of arable land, as well as the latest-generation agricultural machines, large storing capacities with modern equipment (silos, warehouses, floor storages), four sugar factories, mills, orchards and greenhouses, as well as office buildings, hotels, construction land, etc.

MK Group’s heterogeneous business operations are integrated through the SAP ERP business software, implemented in MK Commerce back in 2004. The implementation of the SAP information system allows daily monitoring of operations of all the companies within the Group, which contributes to easier and faster procedures of reaching strategic business decisions.

To additionally upgrade management quality in agriculture, MK IT Business Solutions developed the unique SAP ZAGA module, specialised in the area of agriculture, enabling monitoring of agricultural production and comprehensive and detailed agro-analysis. More than 5000 employees work in the companies within MK Group in the country and abroad.

With such approach of the holding's authorities, MK Group is trusted by hundreds of partners, including such recognized brands as Handelscompagnie BV Niederle, Alfred C. Toepfer International, GRAIN HUNGARY KFT Glencore, Louis Dreyfus, Victoria Group and many others.

Last week, European bank for reconstruction and development (EBRD) announced that it approved a loan of EUR 80 million to leading Serbian company in the agriculture sector, MK Group, for needs of increase in production and bigger energy savings. According to announcement, the loan will provide long -term financing of agricultural activities to MK group and its branch offices and improvement of ecology standards. From total EUR 80 million, EBRD will give EUR 40 million, whereas the remaining amount will be provided by international commercial banks.

Funds are primarily intended for improvement of agricultural activities of MK Group and its branch office MK commerce, it has been cited in the announcement. Bank added that , from the total amount, EUR 10 million will be invested in modernizing equipment and sugar factory Sunoko, which should result in reduction of discharge of Carbon dioxide and consumption of heating energy.

In the face of contemporary global problems, a leading manufacturer and exporter of food, such as MK Group, is aware of the challenges that must cope with and the burden of responsibility towards all the inhabitants of our planet.

Therefore, the Serbian company, thanks to the invaluable know – how, plans its business activity with maintaining a long – term perspective, investing huge capital, not only to adapt more and more arable land to meet constantly increasing, nutritional needs, but also to modernize and optimize the technology used in the organization, and above all intensely develops tools to protect and nurture the environment.

One of the companies, included in the holding, MK Fintel Wind, is a pioneer in this region of Europe when it comes to renewable energy production, primarily water and wind. CEO Kostić says that “today, I see agriculture, in terms of profit, as the production of energy rather than food”.

Plans of expansion of the company are related to its activity in Africa, especially Sudan and Ethiopia, also in order to support the emerging companies in this region of the world with the company's experience and technology. MK Group can boast the most modern technological base in Europe.

Organization's infrastructural facilities is no worse in any way from those, owned by the Western companies, and the trust enjoyed by the holding among its partners from Great Britain to Belarus is a result of consequence, predictability and innovation all of which are distinctive features of MK Group.

Serbian company, established in times, when no one could possibly believe that the post – communist countries will become major players in the global market over the next few years, is a proof that hard work and consistency can work wonders.


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