In Brief

Morgan Stanley shuts Greek, Turkey offices Morgan Stanley & Co shut its Greek office as it retreats in Europe and the Middle East amid a dearth of investment-banking deals. Business involving Greek companies will be handled out of London, said Hugh Fraser, a spokesman for the company. Morgan Stanley, which had opened its Athens office in 2004, also closed its Turkey office. «In line with the firm’s previously announced strategy of resizing its cost base to match current opportunities in the marketplace globally, we have decided to refocus our Greek and Turkish client coverage model out of London,» Fraser said in an e-mailed statement yesterday. Wall Street firms, including Morgan Stanley, whose investment-banking model imploded this year, are cutting jobs and getting out of certain businesses as deals dry up. New York-based Morgan Stanley is firing 10 percent of its institutional securities staff globally. Morgan Stanley last month said it will shut its office in Turkey two years after it opened. (Bloomberg) Coke bottler’s emerging market strategy intact The Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company, the world’s second-largest bottler of Coke drinks, says its strategy of seeking growth in emerging markets is intact even after weaker emerging economies forced the company to revise forecasts twice this year. «What we see happening is happening around the world,» Chief Executive Officer Doros Constantinou said in an interview at the company’s Athens offices on November 28. «When you talk about emerging markets being impacted, it doesn’t mean they will not grow or that our sales will be negative next year.» The company, which bottles nonalcoholic drinks in 27 European countries and Nigeria, cut forecasts in June when record oil prices dented consumer spending and raised transport and production costs. On October 2, it said a downturn in sentiment in Russia, its largest market, meant per-share profits this year would be flat instead of a previously forecast gain of as much as 8 percent. Coca-Cola HBC shares fell a record 21 percent on June 13 after the first revision, and a further 19 percent on the second. The stock is down 62 percent this year, poised for its worst annual performance since at least 1993, when Bloomberg records began. (Bloomberg) Everest acquisition Katselis, a producer of bread and bakery products, has signed a deal to sell a majority stake in its 25 store retail network to fast-food company Everest for 400,000 euros, it said yesterday. Katselis said 60 percent of its subsidiary, Katselis Holdings, will go to Everest as part of the acquisition that includes 21 franchised branches. Bosnian listing Bosnian private firm Fratello Trade launched the first initial public offering in the Balkan country, publishing a public call in local newspapers yesterday for an IPO on the Banja Luka Stock Exchange (BLSE). Fratello, a Banja Luka-based importer and distributor of frozen-food products, will offer 295,000 shares at a price ranging from 4-5.20 Bosnian marka (2-2.6 euros) per share from December 18 to 29, it said in the public call. (Reuters)

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