In the European Union, Ulker has production units only in Romania and Belgium. “We opened in Romania because the position of the group is better here than in other countries in the region. At the time when we opened it, we benefitted from the facility of a major investor. This did not translate into tax reductions but into facilities for the importation of equipment, plus the depreciation and amortization of the equipment,” said Ender Bolat, general manager of Eurex Alimentare SA, which runs the Ulker production unit in Romania. Bolat says Ulker will increase investments on the Romanian market a great deal over the next three years. “These investments will be made in marketing and in enlarging the range of products that will be produced in the local unit,” he explained. Bolat said that he could not specify a precise sum for the investments planned for next year, since the budget has not yet been approved. At this point, the production unit has three functional lines. However, the production unit can accommodate another five lines on the same level. Most of the raw materials used in the unit are purchased from the local market. “Initial feasibility plans included only eight production lines, but their number can be greater. If needed, we can construct additional buildings, since the land we acquired has a generous surface of 98,000 sqm,” said Bolat. At the moment the Romanian company exports to several European countries – Bulgaria, Hungary, Germany, Macedonia, Croatia, Kosovo, Albania, France, Lithuania and the Czech Republic – as well as to Senegal. In Romania Ulker produces biscuit brands Ulker Petit Beurre, Alpella Petit Beurre, Biskrem, Tempo and Clip. Eurex Alimentare SA has 280 employees. Ulker is part of Yildiz Holding, which in 2008 posted a turnover of USD 10.9 billion and an operational profit of USD 268 million. The group invested over USD 500 million in 2008 and had an export turnover of USD 1.3 billion. Last year, it invested USD 60 million in a chocolate production unit in Turkey. Ulker has a market share of 60 percent on the Turkish chocolate market and a similar share on the biscuit market. In total, the group has 46 production units in Turkey.