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Slovenia Business Week no. 13/2005: Mercator Launches Fifth Croatia Mall

The EUR 25m centre in the town of Zadar, in northern Dalmatia, is the latest addition to an ever-growing chain of Mercator shopping centres in Croatia

Slovenia's largest grocer, Mercator, has opened its fifth shopping centre in Croatia as it continues its push to capture ten percent of the country's grocery market.

The EUR 25m centre in the town of Zadar, in northern Dalmatia, is the latest addition to an ever-growing chain of Mercator shopping centres in Croatia.

Apart from the five already completed, works are set to begin on at least five new locations in the near future, Mercator chairman Zoran Jankovic told the press as he opened the new centre.

Mercator is set to build its next mall in the northern Croatian port town of Rijeka, he revealed.

Jankovic added that he was not scared of the fierce competition on the Croatian market and rejected claims that Mercator was the most expensive of all the big chains operating in the country.

The centre in Zadar stretches across an area of 12,500 sq. metres, a quarter of which is taken up by Mercator's shop, while other stores, including sporting goods chain Intersport, occupy the rest of the space.

More than half of the goods sold in Mercator's shop will be local, while 15 percent will come from Slovenia, Jankovic said.

Meanwhile, the head of Mercator operations in Croatia Stanislav Brodnjak said the company has opted to build two roads in Zadar in return for an exemption to municipal tax. The roads will cost more than the municipal tax, he added.

The new centre will create 230 new jobs, including 130 in Mercator's shop. This will raise the total number of workers employed by Mercator Croatia to 1,640.

Slovenia's largest grocer first entered the Croatian market in 2000. Since then it has opened 84 outlets around the country.

Source: Slovene Press Agency STA

Author: STA