Azmont Investments came to Montenegro in 2012, and ever since showed strong dedication and enthusiasm in continuous development of Montenegro as attractive and high-end tourist destination; and as such always was committed to bring best in class experiences and approaches to business through Portonovi project.
While bringing to life Portonovi, unique project for whole Mediterranean, as one of the biggest international investors in the region, we always aimed to engage as much as possible of local resources - local construction companies and local employees, thus transferring all latest international technologies, knowledge and know-how into local community.
To ensure we bring the best in class, we have invested 3 times more than originally contracted and planned – namely, the Lease Agreement Commitments impose EUR 52,000,000 investment within 4 years and EUR 258,000,000 invested within 8 years. Up to date, we have invested EUR 737.4 million including VAT while the projected total investment for phase one is EUR 828 million. Keeping in mind our ambition to use as many Montenegrin companies as possible, in total EUR 464 million was contracted and paid to Montenegrin registered companies through direct contracts with Azmont Investments or through our main contractor, well-known Italian company Impressa Pizzarotti.
To bring to life Portonovi, on the ground of well-known military base Kumbor, prior to any construction, we have used significant resources into ground improvement works, while following strict environmental rules and regulations - demolished and removed more than 90 old objects found on site, 10 tons of NUS from the land and the sea have been cleaned, we have conducted one of the biggest pilling works in Montenegro ever, completely restored 16th century Catholic Chapel – Crkva Svete Nedjelje, restored two monuments from beginning and mid-20th century, dedicated to fallen Boka Bay aviation, restored and placed Anchors found in the sea and ground all over the resort. The technology used as infrastructure within the Portonovi resort, has also undergone all environmental and ecological studies and approvals, and as a result of that one of those systems in place is our Sea Water Heating and Cooling centralized system for entire Portonovi. The importance of these work goes beyond Portonovi and will serve Montenegrin heritage and promotion for generations to come.
Construction period was extensive and requested huge manpower and coordination on national and international level. During the entire period of construction, we have been employing over 2,000 employees per day, which made our construction site one of the largest in the region. Besides actual works on Portonovi amenities, work on the infrastructure in the area was essential and went from the scratch. Of total investment, 11% has been invested in infrastructure of the project that is the long term investment in the Municipality and citizens of Herceg Novi. As responsible corporate citizen, communal fees paid directly to the Municipality of Herceg Novi directly, for construction of residential buildings within Portonovi, amounted to 6,5 million EUR.
Azmont Investments as one of the role models of responsible corporate citizen in Montenegro. Our business operations are based on our corporate values – transparency, efficiency and professionalism. As a reliable partner, dedicated and stable employer and steady tax payer, we have been always listed in the Montenegrin White Book of tax payers. Since 2012, we have paid total of 113 million EUR of VAT, while additionally we have paid over 12 million EUR for taxes and contributions for salaries of employees.
Today, in Portonovi we have over 300 employees on our payroll. Once in full operations from spring 2021, Portonovi will gather 750 employees on our direct payroll. At the same time, in all our retails shops and stores it is expected almost another 700 employees, which means that in Portonovi we will create (directly and indirectly) almost 1,500 working places.
As a socially responsible company whose major priority is long-term development of Montenegro, we have been dedicated and will continue to invest our resources into human and touristic potential of Boka Bay and Herceg Novi by providing education and employment opportunities to the local community, the business opportunities to the foreign investors, and elite tourism offer to visitors from abroad. From the start of our operations in Montenegro, through various CSR projects and programs, we have invested total EUR 3,9 million so far. We are especially proud on the International Hospitality and Management studies that have been implemented through the license of French School Vatel on UDG. On top of the financial support for buying franchise from VATEL that will serve to the International Hospitality Studies operations on UDG for years, we have been supporting numerous young people form Boka Bay that have been interested in hospitality.
Portonovi is operational since August 2019, with offers centred around world-class restaurants, GYM facilities, Portonovi Beach Club by Monument, shops, gardens and the world class Portonovi marina. Two beautiful parks have been created, along with many more landscaping areas available to all Portonovi guests and visitors. Europe’s first One&Only resort and Chenot Espace Wellness Centre are set to open in spring 2021. This will be the final jewel in the crown, which will attract world’s wealthiest and highest-level international community, and position Montenegro right at the very top of the luxury tourism offering.
Portonovi continues to be one of the biggest brand ambassadors of Montenegro, while promoting countries best values to the world. All the events we organized so far across the world in places such as London, Moscow, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Baku, Monaco, Nice, Istanbul and others were only the beginning, as now we will open the door for those guests to come to Portonovi and Montenegro, and fully enjoy and embrace country’s beauty, people, culture and way of life.