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Pepco to set up logistics base near capital

Discount apparel and household products retailer Pepco, subsidiary of South African based investment company Pepkor, will set up a HUF 27.2 billion regional logistics center in Gyál, on the outskirts of Budapest, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said Tuesday. The government is awarding HUF 1.9 bln for the investment.

The 100,000 square-meter base will be completed by 2022, enabling the company to serve all the countries in the region, said Szijjártó at a press briefing announcing the investment in Budapest on Tuesday.

Robin Taylor, managing director of Pepkor Hungary, Pepcoʼs Hungarian unit, attributed the investment to the companyʼs fast expansion, adding that the location for the base was picked because of its geographical position and advanced infrastructure, according to state news agency MTI.

Pepco will serve 140 domestic stores, as well as an additional 500 units in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania and Bulgaria from the new base. The firm will start recruiting new staff later this month, hiring 400 workers by next spring.

Szijjártó was cited by official government website kormany.hu as saying that the investment will create more than 1,000 jobs in total by its completion in 2022, while also establishing a market for local firms by distributing Hungarian products.

The minister noted that the logistics sector accounted for 6.2% of Hungarian GDP in 2018, generating HUF 4 trillion and providing work for a total of nearly 300,000 people, more than the automotive industry, while the 34% expansion in investments in the sector was double the average growth in domestic investment.

Founded in 2015, Pepkor Hungary posted after-tax profit of over HUF 3 bln on sales revenues of more than HUF 36 bln in the business year ended in September 2018, noted kormany.hu.

Formed in 2004, Pepco operates a total of 1,600 outlets in the Czech Republic, Croatia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Romania, and Bulgaria, employing some 16,000.