Imperial Riviera Together with AZ Pension Funds and Valamar Starts a New Development and Investment Cycle

Published 24. September 2019.

The management board of Imperial Riviera d.d. proposed in its Assembly Invitation a HRK 426 million increase (around EUR 57 million) in Imperial Riviera’s share capital.

Valamar Riviera and AZ pension funds have invested over 1 billion kunas in Croatian tourism in the last three years, partnering to acquire Imperial Rab and Hoteli Makarska and continually develop their hospitality portfolios. Imperial Riviera d.d. was formed this June after Hoteli Makarska was merged to Imperial Rab to create a stronger platform for further expansion investments in hospitality in Croatia and the region.

The announced Imperial Riviera’s share capital increase marks the beginning of a 5-year plan of new investments worth EUR 200 million to upgrade the portfolio, grow through acquisitions and expand in prime destinations in Croatia and the region. Thus, Imperial Riviera is poised to become one of the five leading companies in Croatia’s tourism.

Imperial Riviera will operate in several destinations according to top corporate governance practice and have a remarkable hospitality portfolio.

“The capital increase and organization of a joint company focusing on the management and investments in hospitality properties in the region is a logical continuation of a successful collaboration between the leading pension fund and leading hotel company in Croatia. We believe in the growth potential of Croatia’s tourism and the long-term sustainability of a hotel industry that invests in employees, destinations and quality tourism. Therefore, I am certain that the partnership with AZ pension funds represents an ideal model for investing in and developing Croatia’s tourism,” said Željko Kukurin, CEO at Valamar Riviera.

“The continued investments in this joint project stem from AZ pension funds’ investment strategy focusing on Croatia’s tourism because we believe that such investments are aligned with the long-term investment potential of our funds’ members who have the opportunity to achieve optimal returns on their investments. This model combines AZ pension funds’ investment potential and Valamar’s successful expertise as the leading Croatian hotel company and therefore we believe that this model can secure long- term success for this project,” said Kristijan Buk, CEO at Allianz ZB.

Valamar Riviera is Croatia’s leading tourism company operating hotels, resorts and camping resorts in prime destinations – Istria, the islands of Krk and Rab, Makarska, Dubrovnik, and Obertauern in Austria. Valamar’s 34 hotels and resorts and 15 camping resorts can welcome around 58,000 guests daily and provide perfect holidays and authentic experiences for each guest. Steered by sustainability and social responsibility, Valamar leads the innovative management of leisure tourism and creates new value for guests, employees, shareholders and local communities in partnership with its destinations.

AZ pension funds are the largest institutional investor in the Republic of Croatia, with total assets under management worth over HRK 44 billion. AZ pension funds are a relevant investor in the European context as well. Currently, over 677,000 Croatian employees save for retirement with AZ mandatory pension funds, while over 142,000 of them is with AZ voluntary pension funds.

Imperial Riviera’s portfolio includes six hotels, three tourist villages and two campsites located in the leading Croatian destinations of Rab Island and Makarska, with a total of 3,618 keys and can accommodate 9,000 guests. In the 2019 tourist season it employed 900 people. As of 2016, Valamar manages the whole hospitality portfolio.