Below, we present some of the economic sectors that are offering appealing investment prospects.
During the last years, Greece started to implement the necessary structural reforms and then it began to offer exceptional investment opportunities for foreigner investors. Since 2010, the primary deficit, the net payment balance and the cost of salaries were gradually eliminated. The legislative framework has improved – there have been undertaken many actions that protect investments in Greece and at the same time, the Bankruptcy Law has changed. Many obstacles (e.g bureaucracy and licensing procedures) that used to delay establishment process of new companies and start-ups, are now almost eliminated.
The investment environment in Greece has become more competitive and flexible. The Greek government steadily promotes the privatization process of the state property. Investors are showing a great interest in investing in several sectors of the Greek economy, e.g. many Chinese enterprises are interested in investing in the sectors of telecommunications, infrastructures and real estate. Other sectors such as the tourism, the energy field, logistics, real estate and Information Technology are preferred mostly by the investors. Greece also offers many investment opportunities in green economy, services and production, where the brilliant human capital of the country will be employed.
KPAG has a rich portfolio of clients – enterprises that belong in major economic sectors (tourism, food industry, logistics, energy and real estate). These sectors attract many strategic investors from abroad.
Food industry is the strongest and the most developed sector within all the industry sectors in Greece. Figures prove this statement, as food industry represents 25% of the total turnover, it accounts for 24% of employment and 25% of the total invested capital.
Greece provides with its luxury food products the following principal markets: Germany, Italy, Spain, the UK, and the USA. The growth of the industry was very high during the last years, mainly because of the growth of exports of the Greek products. Greek food industries are producing high-quality products, while entrepreneurs are considered to be very flexible and efficient regarding their promotion methods. Products like cheese, dairy products, extra virgin olive oil and olives, honey, wine, stuffed peppers with cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, fresh seafood, fruits and vegetables are the main players of the food industry. At the same time, there is a significant growth in sectors like: snail breeding, cultivation of mushrooms and truffles, farming of saffron from Kozani (krokos) and spiroulina. Demand for Greek olive oil is growing rapidly, and this explains why Greece holds the third position among all countries that produce olive oil worldwide.
Greek food industry is an appealing economic sector for foreign investors, because of the strategic orientation of the Greek food companies to export their high-quality products to developing markets.
KPAG provides all that kind of services that help the inter-connection between Greek food producers and customers from all over the world. Our knowledge, ideas and experience will help the Greek producers to create collaborations with other producers and/or clients. We support the development of wholesales networks through strategic marketing.
Greece is one of the best tourism destinations globally. In 2014, the number of tourists will be 20 millions almost twice the country’s population size (11 million). 85% of all these tourisms come from the Western Europe: 21.2% are from UK, 17.5% are from Germany. There is an investment friendly environment in Greece and entrepreneurs can invest their money in several tourist sectors like: hotels and marinas development, golf establishments, holiday homes, medical tourism (there are more than 700 thermal therapeutic springs in Greece). Other appealing sectors for investments may be: agro-tourism, gastro-tourism and tourist educational programmes.
A very important tool for the growth of the tourism sector is the new investment law. New applications for granting can be submitted from September 2014. The law intends to support investments that foster the improvement of ports, the promotion of different forms of tourism and the upgrading of winter vacation establishments.
The Public Private Partnership scheme is a key investment instrument that concerns infrastructure incentives mainly on marinas and thermal springs. On the other hand, the National Strategic Reference Framework (NSRF) aims to financially support infrastructure works that take place at different regions of the country. Today, there are many opportunities to invest in hotel units sector, while investors can obtain large estates of unique beauty in order to establish new marinas. Greece is the ideal place to built marinas facilities, because it is a country with a coastline of more than 16.000 kilometers and numerous gulfs. Investors’ interest is very high at the moment, the Greek state challenge investors to exploit 48 state-owned marinas.
Investors show a great interest for golf establishments. This is an under-developed market, but there beautiful and suitable landscapes waiting to be developed and host golfers from around the world.
Eco-tourism and relevant eco-tourism products will appeal more and more investors in the coming years. Greece is a unique destination for those travelers who adore this alternative form of tourism, because it is a country with exceptional landscapes, diverse flora and fauna and unique ecosystems.
Investing in property is the most popular investment in Greece. This is not surprising why Greeks are ranked first among other people in property possession. Because of the economic crisis, public authorities introduced an extra tax in properties, which have raised the overall tax burdens for property owners. They became more willing to sell their properties. This situation made foreign investors realize that there are many attractive opportunities for buying different types of property in Greece (e.g. a holiday home, a property with commercial use, a hotel unit, an estate or an olive yard). Purchase of a property in a sunshine Mediterranean country such as Greece, has become something very affordable. Foreign investors are aware of the appealing offers and as a result of that the demand has increased. Luxurious villas in outstanding seaside landscapes can be bought with only 1700 Euros/m2. It should be noted that the Greek public authorities have taken measures that reduce bureaucracy and speed up the necessary procedures to obtain a property.
Geographical position of Greece has very high strategic importance, because Greece is part of the South-East Europe, the Balkan Peninsula and it is close to North African countries and other countries of the wider region of East Mediterranean Sea. Large logistics companies had recognized very early that if they established businesses in Greece, they would get many advantages because of its strategic geographical position. So, they decided to invest in Greece. Many large German logistics firms (e.g. Kühne und Nagel, η Schenker, η M&M Millitzer) are present in the Greek market for many years now. The Greek public authorities are planning to vote a new law which will create a new legal framework for logistics services. The main target is to attract new foreign investments that will boost the Greek economy and make Greece the new transportation hub of south Europe. The Greek industry, the retail services, the agricultural sector and the exports will be the great winners once the implementation of the law begins.
According to this law, logistics warehouses will be built on estates of 500.000 m2. The law 3894/2010 (Acceleration and Transparency regarding the realization of strategic investments) will regulate all the operational procedures of these warehouses. They will be built under the same building laws that apply for industrial constructions. This practically means that new warehouses will be built in many different areas. Some of the most important logistics centers in Greece are: the International Athens Airport, the Piraeus Port (its turnover doubled because of the investment by Chinese Company), the Thessaloniki Port (the only port which is connected with the Balkan and Central European countries through railway), and the Ports of Aleksandroupolis and Patras. The Ports of Piraeus and Thessaloniki are the first in line to be privatized, even though it is not clear yet what is to be sold, part of the shares or the operation license.
The principal industrial sectors in Greece are: manufacture of chemicals, fabrication of metal products and machinery equipment, the textiles sector and the sectors of timber, furniture, and paper. Chemical industry is the flagship of the other industrial sectors. The Greek chemical sector is significantly extrovert. A great trading partner for the Greek chemical products is Germany. In 2013, the production of chemical products increased by 2,1% comparing to last year’s production, according to data given by the Hellenic Statistical Authority. The general chemical sector comprises of the following categories: manufacture of products of composite compounds, as well as production of pharmaceutical products which account for 1/3 of the overall turnover of the chemical sector. There are 350 pharmaceutical industries in Greece, and foreign entrepreneurs find this sector very appealing. These companies employ highly specialized personnel, and they create very innovative products, because companies tend to spend significant amounts of money on R&D departments. The reforms undertaken by the Greek Authorities led to reductions of the pharmaceutical turnover. There is the opportunity for entrepreneurs to invest in a good project and to participate in innovative companies.
Information technology sector is the most innovative of all. Many people with high-quality expertise, international working experience and entrepreneurial way of thinking are involved in this sector. Greek businesses create very innovative products and distinctive services. Especially the Greek microelectronics businesses provide their services to many companies with global reach, such as: η ΑΤΤ, Brazil Telekom, Broadcom, CERN, Cypress, EADS, Avionocs, Freescale, Frigoglas, Fujitsu, Goodrich, Intel, Israel Aerospace Industries, Jazz, LG, Lockheed Martin, Mitsubishi, Motorola, NASA, Netlogic, NTT, O2 UK, OKI, Omega, Panasonic, Philips, RFMD, Rockwell Collins, Samsung, Sharp, Skyworks, Sony, T-Mobile, Texas Instruments, Toshiba, Xerox. Commercial transactions with businesses abroad are so big that account for 80% of the total revenues of the Greek microelectronics sector. The Greek Information Technology sector offers an exceptional opportunity for high-return investments. International businesses which always seek for custom-made services have created their regional head offices in Greece. The country is the operational hub for the regions of South-East Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. Companies like HTC Smartphones, Nokia, Deutsche Telecom, and Sistema have established their headquarters in Greece. The market will grow steadily for the next four years. There is also a great demand for funding opportunities of Information Technology incentives.
KPAG is here to help you with your investment in Information Technology sector. We discover and check all the possible investment prospects, we evaluate your company’s targets and we prepare mature business plans. We support you company throughout all the necessary negotiations and help you with all the due-diligence transactions.