Recession Hits Bulgarian Family Business

Recession Hits Bulgarian Family BusinessThe recession continues to hit the world hard and here in Bulgaria we are all feeling the pressure of an economy that was frail to start with.

Up until her operation, Galia worked for her brother who owns a boiler factory. He started his business repairing boilers in his garage and then got his own premises a few years ago. He designed his own boiler systems which are wood burning/electric combination shower units and started manufacturing them with a small workforce.

It is very much a family business with his son, daughter, and sister Galia working there as well as having taken on Galia's son for a short spell last year and has even offered me work there before now.

Over the last few years the business had flourished, the workforce grew to employing over 30 people and they are the sole supplier of these units to every major town and city in Bulgaria as well as export to Greece. Romania and Russia. Over the last 18 months the business had build a new factory premises, a brand new warehouse with the aid of a 6 figure bank loan to cope with the increase in demand, this was completed just before Christmas

Recession Hits Bulgarian Family BusinessToday, there are worrying times for this business, the orders have diminished and the workforce is down to around 5 people. Galia, who was due to return to work this month, now has no job to go back to. Even though she is family there is no order for here to process and administer. The loans to the bank still have to be paid for the new factory and although there is still a trickle of business things are on a knife-edge.

We just all hope that things turn around and that the orders pick up again later in the year. the factory needs business to pay for the loans and of course employ a local workforce who now find themselves struggling with no work.

I have seen this develop on a day to day basis as I used drop Galia off to the factory in the morning and pick here up in the evening and even now as I work on the factory farm on a daily basis.

Recession Hits Bulgarian Family BusinessFor someone who has worked all his life building up a small business from scratch, then to find that the carpet has been pulled from under his feet is hard to accept. We all hope and pray that the business pulls through - people do need boilers, boilers repaired and replacements. The products they manufacture are fantastic contraptions although mainly used by Balkan countries. There will always be a demand so hopefully the smaller sales won't drop further and may be enough to see them through.

It is not good news at all and just highlights what is happening not only on our doorstep here in Bulgaria, but worldwide, that fact is no comfort to anyone though.
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