Stela has 15+ years of cross-border M&A experience in Southeastern Europe working for EY’s Transaction Advisory and the investment banking arm of Raiffeisenbank. She's worked on a $990 million acquisition by Telenor, a $400 million acquisition by a TV group, and a $195 million disposal by Advent International among numerous other deals. She enjoys freelancing as a way to leverage her M&A and financial analysis expertise for clients worldwide.
Led the sell-side and buy-side financial due diligence projects in the financial services, hospitality, and manufacturing industries, in Bulgaria, Romania, and Cyprus.
Conducted the forensic investigation of a failed top five Bulgarian bank, helping the attorney general build its case against the bank’s directors. The investigative report was included in the body of evidence presented in court where hearings started in May 2018.
Acted as the project manager and key client contact in an advisory project for a Cypriot bank on non-performing loan portfolio management. Analyzed the non-performing debtors and developed a decision tree for a redesigned workout process.
Advised two banks on the implementation of IFRS 9: Financial Instruments. Designed methodologies for calculation of impairment, drafted policy and procedures documents, and supported management in obtaining approval for the new processes launched.
Performed the valuation of three companies engaged in the gaming industry for the purposes of M&A deals totaling $80 million.
Completed several regulatory compliance exercises in the financial services industry to confirm that the businesses were adequately capitalized.
Prepared a profitability and working capital analysis on an electricity trader with a turnover of $10 million on the request of its investors, who wanted to understand why the business was not generating cash despite reporting profits.
Analyzed the value chain of a DIY retailer with a turnover of $45 million, with a focus on the terms of trade with its main supplier to help the retailer's investors assess whether those terms were fair.
Compiled financial analyses included in the information memorandum for a Bulgarian bank with total assets of $90 million.
Developed a financial model and an indicative valuation for an innovative startup based on a unique technology with application in the oil & gas and utilities industries.
Prepared financial models for several startups, including a computer maintenance store, a service to provide remote medical consultations online, a summer camp operation, and a water bottling business.
Focus areas: Financial Planning & Analysis (FP&A), Business Plan Development, Financial Modeling, Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A)
2013 - 2015
Raiffeisenbank International A.G.
Contributed as a key member of the sell-side advisory team in the largest M&A deal in Bulgaria in 2015, the sale of the tile manufacturer KAI Group by Advent International to Mohawk Industries for $209 million.
Supported and facilitated the sell-side process for a Slovenian transport and logistics company.
Prepared the information memorandum and the management presentation as part of the sell-side mandate for a Bulgarian internet service provider.
Performed the valuation of a Bulgarian metal mining company with a turnover of $200 million for the purposes of reporting to the shareholders.
Conducted market research on the Bulgarian electricity sector and prepared presentations on potential acquisition opportunities for strategic investors such as AES and Enel.
Focus areas: Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A)
2003 - 2013
Ernst & Young Bulgaria EOOD
Performed the buy-side financial due diligence of the second largest Bulgarian mobile operator for Telenor, which subsequently acquired the company.
Managed the prefinancing due diligence of the largest Bulgarian food production group, with a turnover of $40 million, for a mezzanine debt investor.
Led a large team executing the buy-side financial due diligence of the Serbian incumbent telecom for Telekom Austria.
Conducted a business plan execution review of a leading Bulgarian gas retailer and service station network for its main lender, ING.
Played a key role in the vendor due diligence of a large Greek generic pharmaceuticals group.
Investment due diligence is a necessary process for both buyers and sellers to undertake to ensure the swift execution of their envisaged transaction. Although, with the stakes high, there are certain challenges that can arise throughout the process which, with careful planning and execution, can be mitigated.
Bachelor's degree in Business Administration and Applied Economics
1992 - 1996
American University in Bulgaria - Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria
Valuer of Intellectual Property and Other Intangibles