BDPST Group: Synergies of the New Age

Hotels

István Tiborcz

For BDPST Group, 2023 was a year of adaptation to change, dynamic development and diversified investments. It was also a landmark year in that we embarked on the bumpy road to becoming a regional player, in parallel with strengthening our position in our home market.

The year 2023 saw not one but many deals, acquisitions and investments in the life of BDPST Group, which in some ways were milestones and brought us closer to our strategic goal of becoming a cross-sectoral group with an outstanding market performance, able to compete internationally.

But if I had to highlight one area where we have made the most progress, it is our financial portfolio. Here, we have started the process of integrating a number of separate companies and services, creating a strong, diverse financial entity. As a result, Gránit Bank, operating as a digital bank, will increasingly become a full-service financial institution, offering a wide range of fund management and investment banking services. This integration will allow us to serve retail and corporate customers even more efficiently and to raise customer satisfaction to the highest level.

In the logistics sector, another relatively new investment area for the BDPST Group, Waberer’s International performed very well. Despite market and economic challenges, the group has increased its performance and market share in recent years. In line with its recently confirmed business strategy to become the region’s number one complex logistics provider, it has made investments and acquisitions that support the achievement of this goal.

One of its largest warehouse investments in Ecser, which is being built next to the strategic M0 ring road, will be the group’s most sustainable logistics center. The acquisitions of the Serbian distribution company MD International and the majority stake in Petrolsped also fit well into Waberer’s portfolio and effectively support its strategic objectives. With these acquisitions, Waberer’s is broadening its service portfolio to serve its customers at the highest level as an integrated logistics provider. The addition of Petrolsped was also a critical step in the group’s entry into the rail logistics sector, thus taking a significant step towards building a multimodal service portfolio.

We have also had a busy year in what we call our “traditional” areas: tourism and real estate development. Perhaps the most important event in this area was the opening of the Dorothea Hotel in November, one of the capital’s most significant property development projects this year. Operating under the umbrella brand of the Marriott International Autograph Collection, the hotel encompasses three buildings of different eras and styles, preserving historic and heritage values.

The year also saw the acquisition of the iconic Tokaj winery, Patricius Wine House, in March, and in May, the group invested in the Pannónia Golf & Country Club, which has an exclusive restaurant, 10 rooms, a conference venue and a world-class golf course, and is being further developed and repositioned through value-added investment. The Botaniq Buda Club, also built and operated by the group, opened in August, following the standards of British private clubs. In the next few years, the big thing in our tourism segment will undoubtedly be the complex renovation of the Gellért Hotel, which will return to Budapest its former emblematic hotel in renewed splendor.

Dorothea Hotel, Budapest

Strategic Flexibility on Road to Success

In the shadow of global crises and geopolitical tensions, the BDPST Group has shown considerable adaptability and resilience. It has successfully navigated different sectors of the economy in changing market conditions. In particular, the successes in the logistics and packaging industries and the developments in the tourism sector are evidence of this. The group has actively adapted to changing demand patterns and market trends.

Geopolitical tensions have hit the real estate market particularly hard. Our strategy has been geared towards safe investments, taking into account new market realities. As the group’s flagship, Gránit Bank has developed a fresh business strategy to adapt to the latest market conditions, with a particular focus on housing lending and housing market trends, responding to the reduction of the equity in housing loans and the opportunities in the real estate market. Waberer’s International is also laying the foundations for the dynamic growth it expects in the coming years with a renewed business strategy focused on sustainability.

The energy crises have also contributed to increased interest in sustainability worldwide. As a result, sustainable investments and projects have become more attractive to capital market players. BDPST Group, as an equity investment company, is building a diversified portfolio with synergistic elements that are resilient to global crises. A focus on sustainability further strengthens the firm’s position against market volatility.

Focus on Innovation and Sustainability

2023 was a year of adaptation to change, dynamic development and diversified investments for the BDPST Group. Successes in the financial, logistical and traditional areas, as well as the newly launched, innovative or particularly complex projects such as the planned renovation of the Gellért Hotel, show that the group is ready for the challenges of the future. In the coming year, the BDPST Group will continue to pursue growth, innovation and sustainability to become a dominant player at the regional level. For us, and me personally as a father of several children, economic, social and environmental sustainability is of paramount importance to leave a livable planet for future generations. So, in the coming years, we will be looking towards investments that take these criteria into account.

New projects and acquisitions, as well as the development and optimization of the existing portfolio, will be the cornerstones of the group’s strategy to strengthen our market position and further increase our value for our partners and customers. The BDPST Group is committed to staying at the forefront of market trends, implementing innovative solutions and achieving long-term sustainable growth in regional and global markets.

István Tiborcz is a capital investor and the owner of the dynamically growing BDPST Group, a leading player in tourism property development, financial services, international and domestic freight transport and complex logistics segments. Founded in 2015, the company is now a listed player in Central Europe.

This article was first published in the Budapest Business Journal print issue of December 15, 2023.

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