Exclusive: Expat CEOs run more than half of biggest 100 private companies in Romania

Foreigners make the bulk of CEOs for the biggest companies in Romania listed based on turnovers. Only 40 of the first 100 private companies in Romania have local CEOs, while more than half of these companies are led by foreigners. Romania-Insider.com has listed the CEOs of top private companies in Romania.

By Corina Saceanu

Why do multinationals choose Expat managers for their Romanian subsidiaries? “Many companies hire someone capable for the job, which means that unfortunately, on some occasions, there are no Romanians who have the business exposure or experience or skill-set for that specific role,” says Delia Burnham, country manager with CVO Recruitment & Simplika.

She also explains that some companies want very tight control from HQ and so always have mother-country foreigners at the helm of their foreign operations, while others consider that the Romanian market has not reached the right level of development or right moment to hire a local CEO.

See below the first 100 biggest companies in Romania, based on their turnovers, and who is their CEO, and further down the first ten Expat CEOs on this list.

BCR – Dominic Bruynseels

BRD- Guy Poupet

OMV Petrom – Mariana Gheorghe

Automobile Dacia – Jerome Olive

Piraeus Bank- Catalin Parvu

OTP Bank- Laszlo Diosi

Rompetrol Rafinare – Arman Kairdenov

Metro Cash & Carry – Dusan Wilms

Bancpost- Peter Weiss

Raiffeisen Bank – Steven Van Groningen

Banca Transilvania- Robert Rekkers

UniCredit Tiriac Bank – Rasvan Radu

Banca Romaneasca – Marinis Stratopoulos

Orange – Jean-François Fallacher

British American Tobacco – David Waterfield

Nokia – Risto Meskus

Hiproma/Carrefour – Francois-Melchior De Polignac

Vodafone – Inaki Berroeta

Kaufland – Adrian Viman

Credit Europe Bank – Omer Tetik

GDF Suez Energie – Yvonnik David

Arcellor Mittal Galati – Thierry Le Gall

Romtelecom – Yorgos Ioannidis (*has recently announced to step down from the position)

Lukoil – Maxim Khitrov

Real Hypermarket – Michel Lamoot

Selgros Cash & Carry – Alexandru Vlad

Citibank – Tibor Pandi

Alpha Bank – Sergiu Oprescu

E.ON- Frank Hajdinjak

Allianz Tiriac Asigurari – Rangam Bir

Garanti Bank – Murat Atay

Volksbank – Lurf Johann

Philip Morris Trading – Sergey Slipchenko

Mediplus Exim – Robert Popescu

Enel Romania – Luca D’Agnese

Mol – Kinga Daradics

Coca – Cola – Michalis Imellos

OMV Petrom Marketing – Rainer Schlang

JTI – Neil Coupland

RCS & RDS – Alexandru Oprea

ING Bank – Misu Negritoiu

Porsche- Brent Valmar

Rewe- Frank Wagner

Omniasig Vienna Insurance Group- Constantin Toma

Continental Automotive products – Pedro Carreira

Alro – Gheorghe Dobra

Cora – Philippe Lejeune

Interagro – Ioan Niculae

Fondul Proprietatea- Greg Konieczny

Pludi Market – Gabor Teleki

Top Brands Distribution – Wael El Ghadban

Arabesque – Cezar Rapotan

Auchan – Patrick Espasa

CEZ Vanzare – Jan Veskrna

Alfred Toepfer International – Marco Wahler

Billa – Sorana Georgia

Ursus Breweries – Gary Whitlie

Procter & Gamble Distribution – Sotirios Marinidis

Autoliv- Ionel Fierbinteanu

ING Asigurari de Viata – Cornelia Coman

Romstrade- Gheorghe Racaru

Michelin- Eric Faidy

Bunge- Cristian Ungureanu

Praktiker – Michael Krahn

Dedeman- Dragos Paval

Farmexpert – Iulian Trandafir

Holcim- Daniel Bach

Daewoo Mangalia Heavy Industry – Soon Gil Hong

Schaeffler- Alexandru Blemovici

RBS Bank – Johan Gabriels

Cargill – Martin Schuldt

MKB Romexterra (Nextebank)- Dan Sandu

Spedition UMB- Dorinel Umbrarescu

Grup Servicii Petroliere – Fanel Hahui

Astra- Radu Mustatea

Libra Bank – Emilian Bituleanu

Takata Petri – Dan Tulvan

Unita (Uniqa Romania) – Oliviu Gabriel Stoica

Banca Italo Romena- Franco Antiga

Lafarge Ciment – Philippe Questiaux

Carpatcement- Florian Aldea

Holzindustrie – Gerald Schweighofer

Arctic – Monica Iavorschi

Oscar Downstream – Alin Niculae

Fildas Trading- Dragos Mihai

Polisano – Coca Cascaval

Sensiblu – Robert Popescu

Motoractive IFN (Part of Garanti Group)- Murat Atay

Delphi Packard – John Hutson

Generali Asigurari – Marie Kovarova

Asirom Vienna Insurance Group – Mariana Diaconescu

Bricostore – Isabelle Pleska

Farmexim – Ovidiu Buluc

Unilever – Marc Desenfans

Johnson Controls – Florinel Tudor

Pirelli Tyres- Giuseppe Cangelosi

Domo Retail – Lorand Szarvadi

Groupama Asigurari – Sanda Nicoară

Bank of Cyprus – George Christoforou

Pepsi Romania – Pavlos Katsivelis

Dominic Bruynseels

Dominic Bruynseels, British, joined BCR in 2008, after having worked for 27 years with Barclays Bank. He has graduated Medieval History at the Durnham University and holds an MBS from the Henley University.

Guy Poupet

Guy Poupet, French, joined BRD in Romania in 2009. He started working with Groupe Societe Generale in 1975. he holds a degree in Politic Studies and in Public Law.

Jerome Olive

Jerome Olive, French, took the helm of Dacia Group in Romania in 2010.

Laszlo Diosi, Hungarian, took over the Romanian subsidiary of OTP Bank in 2007, after having been in charge of the bank’s retail division.

Arman Kairdenov, from Kazakhstan, was named GM of Rompetrol Rafinare in 2010, when he was deputy GM for the same company. Kazakh company KazMunaiGaz owns Rompetrol Rafinare.

Peter Weiss, of Argentinian nationality but with his main residence in Greece, took over the helm of Bancpost in 2010, after leading the local subsidiary of RBS (formerly ABN Amro).

Steven Van Groningen

Steven Van Groningen, Dutch, is the president and CEO of Raiffeisen Bank in Romania, a role that he took in 2002. He has spent almost 14 years in total in the country and is married to a Romanian, Valeria Racila.

Robert Rekkers, Dutch, has been leading Romanian lender Banca Transilvania since 2002. Before joining Banca Transilvania, he led the local subsidiary of ABN Amro.

Marinis Stratopoulos, Greek, currently the GM of Banca Romaneasca, first came to Romania to lead Egnatia Bank in 2001, which he run until 2004.

Jean Francois Fallacher

Jean-François Fallacher, French, a newcomer on the Romanian market. Fallacher joined Orange Romania earlier this year, after having led the Sofrecom company in France.

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The companies’ listing is based on turnovers reported for 2009 to the Trade Registry in Romania. The listing is only meant to give an indication of market position in order to illustrate the Expat CEO article.

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