Viorel Cataramă, the politician that became entrepreneur


One of the most famous entrepreneurs in Romania, Viorel Catarama, made his debut in business in 1990, when he opened Elvila. His name is easily associated with the Elvila furniture brand, but few people know that the entrepreneur is also one of the founders of the Libra Bank credit institution, from which he later chose to withdraw.

Before he went out on his own, Catarama was employed at Technoforest Export, one of the largest companies in Romania during the communist era – a furniture exporter. The experience Viorel Catarama acquired there allowed him to take on a much better role at a foreign company, as an export director for Eastern Europe. The entrepreneur put together all the lessons he had learned, and Elvila shortly became one of the best-known names in the furniture sector, with several factories and thousands of employees in its glory years. Later, as sales in the company’s own stores dropped and due to the financial crisis’s destabilizing effects on exports, their number was drastically reduced.

There were, of course, periods that ended in losses, but even so, the company grew to a point when, at the beginning of this year, it was listed on the AeRO market of the Bucharest Stock Exchange. In numbers, the company reached revenues of RON 24.25 million in the first six months of 2018 – 10 percent lower than in the same period of 2017. In an interview for Business Review, Viorel Catarama says that he is a politician who became an entrepreneur. He remembers that when he was in high school he asked her mother how much one should learn to become a minister. Soon after the Revolution back in 1989, he started to put into practice his liberal aspirations. He met Radu Campeanu and thus he became a member of the National Liberal Party. “In 1991 I was appointed Minister of Interior Commerce and Tourism.” Today, Viorel Catarama has his own party and aims to become the president of Romania while he promises a capitalistic approach, oriented towards entrepreneurs.


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