Porsche Holding targets east Europe

Salzburg, Germany. Porsche Holding GmbH is targeting eastern European markets.

The company is looking at former Communist states to establish a sales network, including Slovakia, Slovenia, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia and Montenegro and Romania. Porsche Holding is often described as Europe's largest private automobile trader with sales of more than 420,000 vehicles.

The company has been the main importer for Volkswagen group's brands in Romania since 1998. The company has 20 VW sales outlets, four Audi centers, 23 Skoda and 12 Audi businesses and a Porsche center there. It has a market share of 12.7 percent.

Spokesman Wolf-Dieter Hellmaier said he hopes for similar success in Bulgaria where VW models are due to go on sale soon.

The family business was founded under the name Porsche Austria in 1949 and belongs to the Porsche and Piech families, who both own 50 percent. It is very secretive regarding its business activities.

Statements for the 2003/2004 business year, which ended March 31, are meager but reveal that Porsche Holding achieved record sales of 7.9 billion. In 2002/2003 it had sales of 7.3 billion. Profit was 189.6 million in 2003/2004.

The corporation has 13,673 employees in 10 European countries and the United States.

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