Welcome to www.bg-im.mobi, the website of the BREITTS Corporation!  Here you will find information about car rental, office rental, as well as our advisory services.  If you plan to invest, whether it is Real Estate or other industries, we will do our best to help you find what you need in order to avoid surprises and enjoy success.  Or, visit our publications page, which includes details of the book Corporate Management - The Most Successful Techniques.

If your browser supports Flash, you can see a video on the left of this text, where the owner of our company Mr. Nikolov makes a short presentation of the business.

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As a part of our effort to make this site more user friendly we provide information in English, German and Bulgarian.  However, we would request that you review our offer in your native language first (if not available, then in English) as content and requirements may vary.  We have standardized all prices (should you find this is not the case we will offer you the best price stated on our whole website).    We duplicate this site to ensure we offer the best service in Bulgaria and Germany.  The http://www.bg-im.mobi address is redirected to http://wp1115160.server-he.de/breitts/en/index.html (German mirror) or to http://www.bulg.org/breitts/en/index.html (Bulgarian mirror) to ensure a faster connection.  You have the choice which one to use.
Live Interview on BBT - May 14th, 2009

Live Interview on BBT - May 2009 Watch the video (in Bulgarian)
Гледайте това видео на български

 

         Текст на интервюто на български

to be allowed to come into their ministry so that they could talk with him, they need to have a signature - now I cannot remember whether by the director or by the Secretary General of the ministry - a special permission to do that.  Mindless! Can you imagine for a second if I said to my employees: "You will not meet with people from outside unless I sign an authorization"...  Well, the state provides an example of total inefficiency...  I am filled with admiration for colleagues who work despite this framework set by the state.  Simply, I do not understand with what self-esteem someone could go to bed in the evening, when he knows he has signed such an order ...  And it probably is the same in other ministries, I can not imagine it is just that one.

Joanna Nikolova: This is about the state administration.  If, however, we speak more globally about the pillars that are holding up the country and are a guarantee that there is a market economy, that we entered into a structure like the European Union, the fact that our financial system is stable at the moment, what is our handicap?
Bogdan Nikolov: In my deep conviction, a stable state is built on two pillars - a stable financial system and stable legal system.  The stable financial system was introduced with the currency board on July 1st, 1997 and now our country - figuratively speaking - looks like a table top that is supported by one pillar [only], and is accordingly quite shaky.  At some point someone will have to put the second column in place [too].   Namely, a stable legal system.  I will not go into a detailed analysis of the causes and how it should be overcome, for the simple reason that time is limited, but in general it should be noted that these laws which work flawlessly in Bulgaria, in large parts are copied from elsewhere.  For example, our Law on Obligations and Contracts was copied in the 50s [of the last century] in most from the French Code Civile. Our Commerce Act with the exception of the chapter "Insolvency and Liquidation" was copied from the German Handelsgesetzbuch in 1990.  Have you heard of any problems…?

Joanna Nikolova: You say "copied" in a positive sense?
Bogdan Nikolov: Sure.  Naturally!  For you see, every gardener knows that when a plant is not given enough phosphorus which it needs, no quantities of potassium can compensate this lack of phosphorus.  Now, let us have a look at the VAT Act.  Since there are problems with uncovering and punishing crimes, in the VAT legislation the legislator tried to put a maximum number of protective barriers so there would be no abuse.   This is exactly an attempt with inadequate measures to try to fight a very different core problem.  Really, I don’t know how this would sound, but I am sceptical towards new "inventions" in areas, where in Western societies there has been a well working framework for decades - or centuries.  Simply no one can convince me that a working group within 2 - 3 months or 1 - 2 years could create a higher quality product than the one that was created (and has worked!) in a Western society for centuries.  I would just copy such a law, if I had the power to do it.

Joanna Nikolova: We are talking about the judiciary, the reform and the laws that have to be finalised.  But what is the responsibility of business, employers, in respect of the fact that the grey economy in Bulgaria is a large proportion of the total economy? What should the representatives of the business do - is there anything that depends on them? You are part of this entrepreneurial profession, this area ...
Bogdan Nikolov: Look, this in particular, depends on the country.  It really depends on the State.  The employer can make it happen that his/her enterprise works in a perfect way.  The fact is that few employers do this, but they do exist – which means few are capable of doing this .   The rest depends on the state.  Simply, the state should establish the strict framework in which there would not be grey economy.   Think about it, if you are a restaurant owner and the manager of the restaurant steals from you, who is really to blame? Naturally you.  Because you have not put him/her in a framework that prevents them from stealing.  Now, the state simply must accept responsibility, but this happens when the state is strong and when it is not engaged in stupidity.

Joanna Nikolova: You say that the state should assume responsibility, but you are one of the people who do not just wait for someone to do something but are working in your own field.  Furthermore, you made a kind of selection of some of the rules in a book.  That is the formal reason for today's meeting.  Here, I will show on that camera - Corporate Management.  This book was published very recently.  What provoked you to write it?
Bogdan Nikolov: Actually, the widespread ignorance of basic principles triggered the idea.  I think that everything that is written in this book is so obvious that the owners and managers of an enterprise should know it.   The fact is, however, that most of these things are not respected.  I think it would be difficult to find anything in this book, to simply open any page and say "Here, this is not true." Everyone would agree formally: "Yes, indeed, it is true." The success in leading a company is not as complicated as a nuclear power reactor or a repair of the Hubble [Space] Telescope or something of that sort.  I am just sure that if entrepreneurs follow these rules, things will move forward.  With a faster or slower rate, depending on global conditions, but will move forward.  You see, this is the difference between most Western societies and us.  Western societies are moving forward with a lesser or greater speed.  We, unfortunately, from time to time, every 10 - 20 years drop back, then move forward again, and so on.  Connected to this, I would like to say something about the crisis because sometimes statements are made of the crisis in Bulgaria and America as if we’re talking about the same thing.  The crisis in America, you can imagine as a [disease of a] very healthy organism, which at the moment simply has a 39 degree temperature.   In Bulgaria, the situation may be pictured as a pale weakling who for the time being has no fever...  The United States have not once in their more than 200 year history gone bankrupt.  Our country does this every 20 - 30 years, sometimes even 10.  So the crisis in Bulgaria and America has a different genesis and different structure.

Joanna Nikolova: Does that mean we are more flexible and that we can draw advantages from this situation? Or, the global economy reflects on ours?
Bogdan Nikolov: Of course, if we may use a little exaggerated comparison, so to say, the typewriter industry cannot be hit by a computer virus.  But if we really look at things in a more serious manner, we have to take extreme care not to reach [a condition with] a temperature of 39 degrees, if we continue using this analogy made a minute ago.   Because, if the strong body recovers quickly, including (including!) from a budget deficit, I am not sure how long our country will be able to sustain a budget deficit.  In any event, in any case, much less time than America.

Joanna Nikolova: We shall see this [in the future].  We have heard today what the facts are.  The facts are presented in a very easy to understand way based on the knowledge you have from your own experience.
Bogdan Nikolov: Thanks.

Joanna Nikolova: So, eventually I will ask who is this book targeted at?
Bogdan Nikolov: The book is aimed at everyone who would like to make their corporation a well-oiled machine.  Whether this is a student who has just graduated, whether it is an entrepreneur with a 5 - 6 years experience, I think that each could draw some conclusions from the book.  In the case of an entrepreneur with 20-years experience, there should not be any unknown element.  And if he/she has 20 years of experience and by chance still finds unfamiliar things, this should lead to some conclusions...

Joanna Nikolova: Thank you very much for participating in the show, for the comments that you made and I wish you success in your work and with your book!
Bogdan Nikolov: The pleasure was all mine!

Joanna Nikolova: Bulgarian wages are among the lowest in the European Union – up to ten times lower than the average, but our working week is one of the longest.  What causes this anomaly and how long will the indexes remain unchanged? Institutions do not give a clear answer to this question, so the best solution is to seek the advice of experts in the field.  Without anymore opening remarks I present to you my guest for today – this is the entrepreneur Bogdan Nikolov.  He is an economist by profession and deals with corporate management.  Good evening, welcome!
Bogdan Nikolov: Good evening, Ms. Nikolova! It’s nice to be here.

Joanna Nikolova: You have heard the worrying indicators for the Bulgarian economy in the press review.  There has been a lot of information on this topic.  They are hardly a surprise for anyone.  What is the reason that Bulgarians work hard, on paper, but in reality labour productivity is so low?
Bogdan Nikolov: First let’s comment briefly on the figures.  Today I heard something like 280 leva is the average wage in the country.   Without going into too much detail, it should be noted that 280 leva as the average salary for cities like Sofia, Varna, Plovdiv, Stara Zagora, Bourgas, Veliko Turnovo, and so on is an illusion.  Naturally, wages in those cities are higher, that is, the ratio is not 10 times, but the difference is large and it is not in our favour.  We have to elaborate on the reasons therefore.  No matter how clichéd it might sound, most of these reasons are of a national-psychological nature.  First, it can be observed that when in a Bulgarian company workers, employees, management, outside consultants and so on start to discuss an issue, they often "hover" around it.  Of course, this is most clearly observed in public institutions where there is a faltering, in that everyone would like to show the working group how much he/she knows on so on, but this is also the case in private business.  You know, we Bulgarians have a quality that at first glance seems minor, but which substantially harms the business.  This is not to insult the person, not to say unpleasant truths in his or her eyes, based on the fact that this person has put some effort into the work.  Let us take as an example our corporate website.  While it was oriented solely towards the Bulgarian audience, we never received any call, no criticism.  In the rare cases, when I asked someone how the site was, that person would say: "Oh, it's great!" However, the moment we began working with Germans and translated it into German, [the situation changed].  If a German does not reach his/her intended destination by the third click, if this does not happen with the speed of light, he would immediately ring and ask: "Mr. Nikolov, what’s going on? In the contract you offered me this and that, but it is not happening on your site! So ever since I started working with Germans precisely because they had no reluctance to insult me, affect my tender feelings, things have improved.

Joanna Nikolova: Did the effectiveness of your site increase?
Bogdan Nikolov: Sure! I would say that the site is currently very good and also other things [have improved].  The first and most important thing that the Bulgarian companies need to do is to clearly put the issues on the table at internal operative meetings.  Actually, nothing could be more important than that.  Closely related to the first, but no less important is the second thing, namely the discussion of each question only once.  For all the years I have lived in German-speaking countries, I know that when an issue is placed on the table, there may be many very different opinions on it - one says "yes", another says "no", the third - "perhaps", the fourth observes "yes, but not today", etc.  However, when they get up from the table after the meeting a decision is taken and the whole unit complies with it.  What happens in a typical Bulgarian company? One says, "hm-hm-m-m", another says to "y-y-yes, but I do not know," the third says he would need to ask somebody.  Finally, a decision is taken, often - though not always - in an authoritarian manner.  Then, the following Monday, they all sit at the table and the discussion starts from the beginning as though this issue has never been discussed.  An enormous quantity of man-hours is lost.  Energy that could have gone into a more productive direction is wasted.   Sounds prosaic, but it is true.  The third reason for the low productivity is the under-investment in high technology.  Look, every company has different periods in its development.  There are times when customers are lining up outside the door and the revenue that we collect pours in, even we might miss sending an invoice for a service done.  Let us wish everyone has such a period in their company.  However, after this, there comes a period when the customers are gone, when we have nothing and nobody to invoice.

Joanna Nikolova: What should be done in such a period?
Bogdan Nikolov: This is the moment when the team has to consolidate the processes in the company, to invest in new technologies and to move forward.  We don’t need to invent hot water.  The same was done by the Roman Empire - conquer and expand; at a time when things get worse consolidate, strengthen democracy from in the centre, in Rome, and so on.  Every company should act in a similar way.

Joanna Nikolova: Well, in terms of personnel, employees, what should the policy of the company be and what are the main errors of employers here in Bulgaria?
Bogdan Nikolov: The main mistake of the employers in Bulgaria in terms of personnel is that they say, "Why should I invest money in him, since he can leave any time".  Formally speaking, and acting on a first-signal system, this may be true; however, it is much better to invest money in someone even if he/she leaves after that, than to not invest a penny in the development of the individual and he stays.  This is the most dangerous thing that can happen to our company - to keep someone in our company who lacks the necessary skills.  Of course, I prefer to invest in someone, even if he goes.  Well, after he is gone, it would mean that I didn’t manage to keep him, rather than not to invest in him and for him to stay.  Then you know what happens...  So, another thing still in connection with productivity; is Western companies’ there is the so-called succession planning, that is, it is clear when someone moves to a higher position, who will take his/her place.  Two or three hours ago, at the Hilton, there was an event with the former president of France Valéry Giscard d’Estaing who said something very interesting: "The world is moving and changing." I was listening with interest - this person was talking about, how the world is moving and changing.  What I see in a lot of Bulgarian companies is many things move, but nothing changes.  In short, somehow we have to do this, in order to catch up with - for successful companies to overtake - the development of the world and things because the world won’t stop and wait for us.

Joanna Nikolova: You say "to catch up with".  I will quote some of the data that I mentioned in the press review at the beginning of the conversation.  If the productivity of labour in the European Union is 100 units, in our country it is 36.  This was reported recently by Minister Emilia Maslarova.  This is a huge discrepancy - our work is three times less effective.  The problem has many layers.  What is the fault of the State, of the institutions, for the framework they ensure for business?
Bogdan Nikolov: The answer to this question is very easy.  Colleagues from a ministry where I used to work many years ago, quite some time ago, told me - not months but two or three years ago - that if someone were