Alkaloid & MakStil heading for loftier milestones
Friday, 29 February 2008

Alkaloid Skopje (MSE ticker ALK) is a Macedonian Pharmaceutical giant that was established in 1936, in the Macedonian capital Skopje. Over the past 70 years Alkaloid has grown not only to dominate the Macedonian, but the regional market as well.

Today, Alkaloid has offices in over 12 countries worldwide. The Swiss, Russian, Croatian, Bulgarian, Romanian are only the few markets that Alkaloid and its products cover, with a combined population of over 200 million people.

Seven months ago Alkaloid AD established an office in New Albany, USA, after getting the US FDA Approval. This is tremendeous success for Alkaloid not because it expanded its market share to additional 300 Million People, but also because the US FDA is very strict in issuing licenses to foreign owned Pharmaceutical companies. This speaks volumes about Alkaloid and its products.

A little bit Alkaloid and its products. Alkaloid has expanded into different areas: Pharmaceutical, Cosmetics, Botanics and Chemicals. Alkaloid has its hands into everything. After the sad death of its CEO past year, there was worry over the companies future, however, the new CEO Zivko Mukaetov has done a brilliant job, as an illustration, he managed to get the approval of the US FDA and established Alkaloid USA.

Alkaloid is relentless towards research and development and have already invested over 7 million Euros towards building new Research and Development Institute expected to be completed by mid 2008 .

You can see why I've picked Alkaloid to perform very well on the Macedonian Stock Exchange. At the moment, the price to book value is much smaller than the price to earnings value. Currently ALK trades for 11,200 denars which is about 190 Euros per share. There is nowhere to go but Up.


MakStil Skopje (MSE ticker STIL)

Ever wonder why the US Navy Ships and Carriers are so strong? If you guessed because of MakStil, you were right!

MakStil dates back to 1967, when the company, then under the name of Mines, Irons and Steelworks Skopje started its production, the largest of its kind in SouthEastern Europe.

Today the majority shareholder is the Duferco Group, a giant in the Steel Industry. MakStil is the only company in the region that produces Quarto Mill Plates and Steel Slabs. MakStil's Steel Slabs are of highest quality, so it wasn't too surprising when it caught the eye of the Americans. Today new US Navy Ships proudly carry MakStil's logo.

Good news spread quickly. MakStil products are wanted by major industrial countries world wide. In fact, the demand is so high, MakStil has been continuously hiring and in order to catch up, the company has introduced three shifts.. Its CEO, Minco Jordanov, has informed several Macedonian daily newspapers that the company intends to hire over 2,500 people in the next 3 years in order to meet the ever growing demand from the US, Canada, Russia, China.

What I particularly like about MakStil is that its employees are paid double and even triple the average Macedonian salary. Yes, working in the steel industry is tough, but kudos to the management team.

MakStil went public only recently, and has so far tripled. Just like Alkaloid, MakStil's price to book value is much smaller than the price to earnings value. Today MakStil is still an incredible bargain at only 500 denars per share (around 8 euros).There is still time on MakStil, you have not missed the boat. 


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