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Interview of the week


Ilie CARABULEA, President, CARPATICA Financial Group

For me, being a powerful businessman means that a set a essential rules are respected by the entire group (approximately 30 companies), rules that also are found in my managerial philosophy...

XPRIMM: Most of the times the press refers to you as "the most powerful businessman in Sibiu". What does that mean in your opinion?
The power and strength of a businessman resides in his achievements, in his responsibilities assumed and fulfilled and in the message that his results and successes give to society. If a businessman is perceived by people as being strong, then the feedback is a positive one and this kind of appreciation comes to enforce the existence of the system of principles, values and rules of conduct that is briefly known ass business ethics.
According to those mentioned above, for me, being a powerful businessman means that a set a essential rules are respected by the entire group (approximately 30 companies), rules that also are found in my managerial philosophy:
- the will to always improve and perfect;
- the continuous fight to achieve better results;
- managing activities and providing services, not only on a local level, but on a national and international one;
- the contribution to the wellbeing;
- respect and loyalty towards the company and harmonization of the interpersonal relationships throughout the holding;
- the assumption of the managerial responsibility.

XPRIMM: In just a few years you managed to create a very notorious and stable financial group. Which are the plans to further develop this business?
I believe in a continuous stability and development, having in mind the necessity to supervise, consolidate and expand any business that you establish. That is what happened with CARPATICA Financial Group. CARPATICA Asig was created in 1996 (at the time it was called ATLASSIB Asigurari). The establishment of CARPATICA Commercial Bank followed closely in 1999, while SSIF CARPATICA Invest, CARPATICA Construct and CARPATICA Life Insurance Broker were created in 2007. We now find ourselves at the moment when we have to consolidate the existing structures, to expand and to identify the business opportunities that come along the way, without losing sight of our primary development objectives.

XPRIMM: The CARPATICA Financial Group is one of the few ones with Romanian capital. Do you intend to maintain this situation or will you search for a foreign investor to finance the group's plans to expand?
We take pride in the fact that the group was built mainly with Romanian capital. We have proven the strength, the power and the presence of the inland capital. As a matter of fact, the slogan of CARPATICA Commercial Bank is "the strength and intelligence of Romanian capital". All the investments we've made so far were financed with inland funds.
As for foreign investors, we don't have to look for them. Representative names from the European financial markets are getting more and more interested in our activity. Although we had some offers to sell parts of our portfolio and to establish strategic partnerships, we have not taken a decision at this time. Meanwhile, we are open to new proposals and negotiations.

XPRIMM: CARPATICA Asig is the only one in the top 15 insurance companies which has 100 % Romanian capital. What is the role of CARPATICA Asig in the group?
As I said before, we are proud to be in the top 15 insurance companies in Romania, using only inland funding. This is a proof that Romania has valuable resources for investments, that we benefit from a healthy business environment and that we have businessmen eager to invest in truly prosperous enterprises.

XPRIMM: Which are the development strategies for CARPATICA Asig? Do you have any offers from a foreign company? Is CARPATICA Asig for sale?
The development strategy for CARPATICA Asig focuses on the two main components: consolidation and growth. We have ambitious plans: to expand, to gain a larger share of the market and to increase the number of our customers. We are aware that all of the above can only be achieved with a high level of investments. The first step we've made in 2008 was the increase of the company's share capital, by the will of the shareholders, reaching at the moment RON 20,800,000. The funds are still entirely Romanian.
We had some interesting purchasing offers from foreign companies, which I believe is a sign of appreciation. We have not taken any decisions in those directions but we are open for further proposals and negotiations.

XPRIMM: CARPATICA Commercial Bank is aiming for a profit thet is five times bigger than the one in 2007. What can you tell us about the targets of CARPATICA Asig?
For the moment, the increasing claims ratio on the MTPL segment is affecting the profit of the company. To make it more profitable, we designed new offers that include insurance of property and goods, which have a lower degree of risk. We believe that, through this method, the budget will grow between 19% and 35%.

XPRIMM: Insurance, banking, investment funds, real estate... this is the present. Which are the sectors you will approach in the future?
You already mentioned the main points of interest in Romania in the near future. I would add others that I consider interesting and which are related to my favorite business: tourism and transportation. The expansion of the national and international road transportation, air transportation, tourism and agrotourism, without forgetting agriculture, are just some of the fields in which we are developing new projects

Editor: Mihaela CIRCU | Published on 17.07.2008

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