Volume VI


1. Social and Professional Networks of Beratli Merchants

Author: Gergana GEORGIEVA, Nikolay TODOROV.

Abstract:    The place and role of merchants in the Ottoman economic system is a topic of interest in modern Ottoman studies. A certain group of traders – beratli traders, receive a special position, which provides them with a higher social and economic status than others. This category carries out its commercial activity under the regulation of a special certificate (berat), which shows that they perform activity delegated by the state.
    The category of beratli merchants developed especially in the 19th century and their economic activity was directly related to the important political and economic changes in the Empire. The abolition of monopolies on the grain trade, the opening of Danube shipping in the 1840s, the change in the structure of imperial markets and the full integration of the Ottoman Empire into the world economic system imposed new rules and required a new type of player.
    The aim of the study is to analyze beratli merchants using the methods of two modern social and economic theories – that of entrepreneurship and social networks. We will analyze which of the characteristics of entrepreneurs have beratli merchants and how they apply them. Two specific examples have been selected which, thanks to the well-preserved documentation, allow the best methodological outlines of professional and social networks of beratli merchants.
     Beratli traders were one of the most important elements of the economic structure of the Ottoman Empire in the 19th c. As a result, they hold important positions not only in the provincial administration, but also at central level. Beratlis maintains very good contacts with other traders, not emphasizing competition, but cooperation and partnership. Beratlis may have high-level contacts, but they do not neglect small players. They build a dense network of representatives, suppliers, partners and customers. If we look at the overall image of beratli merchants, we will find the many roles they play in society. They were great benefactors of the community – donate money to schools, churches, hospitals, and etc. beratli merchants fully correspond to
today’s image of entrepreneurs: active, flexible, quick to respond to changing conditions, seeking up-to-date information, taking financial risks, developing several different activities in parallel, but also socially active.
Key words: merchants beratlis, social networks, professional networks, Ottoman Empire, entrepreneurs
JEL: N73, N83, N93

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2. The Role of the Market in the Bulgarian Revival

Author: Pencho D. PENCHEV

Abstract:     The main purpose of the paper is to outline some of the peculiar and more specific manifestations of market processes in Bulgarian society during the last few decades before the Liberation (1878). With the formation of the Bulgarian nation, the market forces format and rationalize its development. It is important to emphasize, however, that the market process is not a universal instrument for immediately achievement of social harmony and socio-political nirvana. In the first place, the creative destruction caused by the market gives rise to some discontent. The overall assessment of the role of market processes, however, is rather positive. They affect positively practically all major aspects of Bulgarian social life. Education is becoming more adequate, meaningful and humane. Market instruments allow creation of sustainable structures for the cultural improvement of Bulgarians and for solving certain social problems. These forces have a positive effect not just because they lead to material enrichment. Even when their manifestations are loaded with “negative” moral evaluations, they actually make Bulgarians more humane: they reduce violence, help find a spouse, promote cultural progress and show what should not be traded.
Key words: market process, Bulgarian Revival, culture, education, social envy and inequality
JEL: N93, Z1


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3. The Entrepreneur of the Bulgarian Revival Facing the Bankruptcy

Author: Ivan ROUSSEV

Abstract:    The article presents an analysis of bankruptcy as an important event of the market relations during the Bulgarian National Revival period. The problems arising around bankruptcies are the main motives for the creation of modern commercial law. The many bankruptcies in Europe in the early 19th century caused by the wars and the crises necessitated the codification of the commercial law. Then the French ‘Code de commerce’ appeared, promulgated in 1807. The first commercial laws of most countries in Europe and the world were created on the model of the French ‘Code’. The Ottoman Commercial Law, promulgated in 1850, was also created on the basis of French ‘Code de commerce’. Most of its content is aimed at bankruptcies.
    The article presents data on bankruptcies of Bulgarian merchants and companies in the 1850s, 1860s, and 1870s – how, when, and for what reasons they happen. Bankruptcies of some of the rich and well-known Bulgarian companies are also presented. At the end of the article the following main conclusions are made: 1/ On the Bulgarian market, as part of the Ottoman market, the bankruptcy was documented only in the third quarter of the 19th century, i.e. after the promulgation of the Ottoman Commercial Law. 2/ Most bankruptcies are caused by the general economic situation in the region and in Europe – the crises in the 1850s, 1860s, and 1870s, uncollected debts from traders and companies, bankruptcies of partners. The reason for the bankruptcies is also the poorly kept commercial documentation of the traders and the companies. 3/ There are also intentional bankruptcies („cunning bankruptcies” as defined by the Ottoman Commercial Law), but the data about them are incomplete and doubtful, as the real situation in most cases remains hidden from the authorities and the commercial courts. 4/ Bankruptcies directly concern the main professional and moral categories, assessed as important during the era – the honesty, locality, reputation, self-consciousness of the commercial class. A larger study is needed to show in which direction these categories are developing in the process of formation of the Bulgarian economic culture after 1878.
Key words: Bulgarian National Revival Period, bankruptcy, commercial courts, entrepreneur, entrepreneurship, economic culture, commercial reputation
JEL: N43, N73, N93

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4. Commercial Entrepreneurship during the Bulgarian National Revival Period in the Light of the New Economic Sociology

Author: Ivaylo NAYDENOV

Abstract:    Social networks, social capital and trust are fundamental concepts in the new economic sociology. At the same time, they provide the opportunity for analysis of uniform information contained in the personal and business correspondence of entrepreneurs during the Bulgarian National Revival period. The primary sources for the proposed study are published and mostly unpulished documents stored at the Bulgarian Historical Archive in the National Library in Sofia and in the Scientific Archive of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences.
    Hristo, Nikola and Ivan T. Pulievi managed to establish social network in Ottoman Bulgaria, while their relatives Evlogi and Hristo Georgievi expand their contacts and scope of activity in Romania, in London, Manchester, Marseilles, etc. Georgievi’s ability to expand their web, to find new markets and commodities was very important prerequisite for their success. The available primary sources clearly show that the economic activity is socially embedded. Some basic moral norms (for instance honesty) played an important role in the way of thinking and behavior of the mentioned entrepreneurs. The Pulievi brothers, their nephews Evlogi and Hristo Georgievi, and their outside agents, managed to earn the names of honest merchants, thus attracting the “friends” they needed.
    Relationships between relatives and partners, as well as contacts with other contractors, vary from friendly to tense and sometimes hostile. If we take into account all the above mentioned aspects, we could acquire a detailed notion of the essence of commercial entrepreneurship during the Revival period.
Key words: Bulgarian National Revival period, commercial entrepreneurship, new economic sociology, social networks, social capital, trust
JEL: N73; N83; B55

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5. On the Political Entrepreneurship in the 19th Century and its Importance on the Economic Development of Bulgarians

Author: Petkov St. PETKOV

Abstract:    On the basis of the theoretical model for political entrepreneurship proposed by the author, initiatives and projects of Bulgarian public and political subjects from the beginning of the 19th century until the creation of the new Bulgarian state in 1879 are analyzed. Church-national movement is the longest and most effective political entrepreneurship, ending with the creation of a Bulgarian proto-state – the Exarchate. The manifestations of the evolutionary direction in the national liberation movement are considered, especially those in the period after the Crimean War (1853–1856) to the end of 1876 after the April Uprising. Legal political actions are a kind of political entrepreneurship, as the ultimate goal of most of them is to establish political autonomy of the Bulgarians in the diocese of the already established Bulgarian Exarchate without formal separation from the “inseparable” Ottoman Empire proclaimed in Paris in 1856. Most of the revolutionary Bulgarian initiatives from the period 1856–1876 can be characterized as “startup” projects with all the conventions in the transfer of a predominantly economic phenomenon from the 21st century to the specific environment of the 19th century. The lack or insufficiency of own funding is particularly important for the success of these endeavors and therefore their organizers resort to risky assistance from external forces, which predetermines and limits to a large extent the results even of those who achieve their political goals such as the April Uprising of 1876.
Key words: political entrepreneurship, national liberation movement, Bulgarian Exarchate, evolutionists, revolutionaries, political startup projects
JEL: N01

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6. Buying Ottoman Debt before the Bankruptcy: Some Observations on the Emission of New Bonds (ESHAM-I CEDID) in 1871–1872

Author: Hristiyan ATANASOV

Abstract:    At the end of 1871 the Ottoman government initiated emission of internal debt. The goal was to raise funds for the construction of railways in Anatolia. New bonds (esham-ı cedid) have been issued for a period of ten years, with an annual interest rate of 10%. The securities were offered for purchase to Ottoman subjects not only in Constantinople (Istanbul) but also in the Ottoman provincial centres. The available scattered and incomplete records suggest significant interest in the new bonds. Therefore, the emission can be considered successful, and the Ottoman government managed to sell its securities under the initially proposed conditions.
    It is important to be mentioned that apart from private individuals, provincial institutions such as orphans’ funds (eytam sandığı) and city councils (belediye meclisi) also invested their capital in the new bonds. These investments are particularly indicative and raise a number of questions. In addition, the emission itself and the purchase of securities took place at a time when the Ottoman financial system definitely did not enjoy a good reputation and its indebtedness to external creditors was a well-known fact. Eventually, the Sublime Porte went bankrupt in 1875. The article presents the author’s initial observations, and the conclusions cannot be considered definite. However, the information about the emission of securities from 1871–1872 suggests both the personal interest of investors and the ability of the Ottoman centre to skilfully use the assets of provincial institutions to finance its infrastructure projects.
Key words: Ottoman Empire, internal debt, new bonds (esham-ı cedid), bancruptcy, Danube Vilayet
JEL: N23, N25, G23, G33

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7. Conservative Entrepreneurs: An Attempt to Quantify the 1878–1900 Internal Migration Drivers in Bulgaria

Author: Martin IVANOV, Kaloyan GANEV, Ralitsa SIMEONOVA-GANEVA

Abstract:    The following research is the first attempt in the Bulgarian-language literature to quantify the drivers behind the internal migration of the population in Bulgaria after 1878, which according to some authors (Palairet, 1997) is of key importance for the established post-liberation economic and social model. So far, hypotheses concerning migration drivers that are found in literature have not been put to formal testing. To test them statistically we collect all the relevant data from official statistical sources. Then we apply a regression analysis (both OLS- and GLS-based) to estimate the parameters of three models explaining migration at three levels: national, rural, and in a specific district (that of Pazardjik).
    We found no statistical support with respect to political and demographic determinants put forward in the literature, such as the “agrarian coup” that followed the mass-outflow of Turkish population around the Russo-Turkish War, or “revenge” for the 1876 Bulgarian atrocities. Instead, the empirical evidence supports the social and economic drivers of migration. It was the smaller economic opportunities in the mountain regions that pushed nearly 20 percent of Bulgarians towards fertile planes. Apparently, their main incentive was the availability of “free” arable land, regardless of its location, fertility, or infrastructural connectivity. Hence, the settlers of the last quarter of the 19th century can be portrayed as conservative entrepreneurs, embarking on unstudied and distant lands, where they seek not economic prosperity, but physical survival.
Key words: internal migration, social and economic drivers, political and demographic drivers, entrepreneurship, quantitative data analysis
JEL: N33, N53, N83, N93

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8. Entrepreneurship and Industrial Policy in Bulgaria after the Liberation until the Balkan Wars (1878–1912)

Author: Sonia GEORGIEVA

Abstract:    At the core of the analysis of the topic is the understanding that in the course of socio-economic changes on the way to modern capitalist society, Bulgarian entrepreneurs had only such a degree of freedom and opportunity for action as the initial internal conditions and external constraints gave them. In Bulgaria after the Liberation, in the absence of a clear social structure and significant social forces, the state became a major factor in economic change. In the conditions of general backwardness, preconditioned by the centuries-old separation of the Bulgarian lands from the European transformation processes, the Bulgarian entrepreneurship was gaining strength, gradually acquiring self-confidence and experience. It is in this context that those Bulgarian entrepreneurs, who showed an unwavering will to succeed, adopting the economic innovations and models of a production organization from the developed world stand out even more clearly. Despite their efforts, actively supported by the state’s industrial policy, Bulgaria was moving slowly along the path of its capitalist development.
Key words: Bulgarian economy, industrial policy, entrepreneurship, economic change, entrepreneurial spirit
JEL: N01, N10

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9. The Second State Court (1910–1914) and the Charges Against the Former Minister of War Mikhail Savov (1903–1907)

Author: Evgeni KOSTOV

Abstract:    The Institute for constitutional Ministerial criminal liability in Bulgaria is based on article 155-159 from the Constitution of the Bulgarian Principality, adopted in 1879. It provides for a specific procedure through which the members of the government to be judged outside of the civil courts. From 1880 to 1923, through this procedure four trials were held. In this case, we focus on the work of the Second State Court (1910–1914). We explore potential law violations committed by ministers from the popular liberal government of Bulgaria, in the period of 1903–1908. Later, in 1913 year, the indictment, was published. This research study analyzes the supposed crimes of the former Minister of War Mikhail Savov that are subject to an indictment. The author comes to the conclusion that most of the allegations are unfounded. In 1914, as a result of political reasons, the decision of the Parliament was made to remove the criminal responsibility of the ministries.
Key words: ministerial criminal offenses, the Second State Court in Bulgaria (1910–1914), General Mikhail Savov, Ministry of War
JEL: K42, N73

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10. The Hierarchical Structure of Patronage (Clientelism) in the Bulgarian Society in the 19th and 20th Centuries

Author: Rumen ANDREEV

Abstract:    There are hidden but well-known to the public hierarchies that are more stable than the official ones, namely the clientelism / patronage. The aim of the report is to analyze the patronage in the Bulgarian society in the 19th and 20th centuries. This is one of the most stable social structures the patronage / clientelism, which is reorganized under the various political and economic systems. It means non-reciprocal debt, owing not only money and services, but also honor and dignity. This form of dependence has existed since ancient times in every society. In the modern world, as in the past, patronage redistributes resources, which is done in hierarchies of clientelistic networks. Patronage is an individual and social way of surviving in uncertain times, it lacks dignity and unnecessary honor. The report does not examine who is the client and the patron, but the phenomenon, the existing relationship between them, so they are called by both names – patronage and clientele. These structures develop complex networks of non-reciprocal exchange of services and bad debts that are difficult to explore with standard scientific approaches. For the needs of the research a complex interdisciplinary approach from different fields of science is used – economics, anthropology, history, sociology, etc., as well as comparative and historical analysis. Although these hierarchical structures are characterized by many errors, in the modern information world they are still the most used.
Key words:
hierarchies, patronage, clientelism, crony capitalism, debt
JEL: N10, P49

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11. Establishment of the Society of Academic Economists in Bulgaria

Author: Rositsa ZLATINSKA

Abstract:    The main goal of this study is to present the initiation and the development of the Society of academic economists in Bulgaria. The text analyzes the main historical facts related to the conditions and motives for its creation. It also presents the goals and tasks, as well as the structure, management and financing of the organization.
    The emergence of the Society was part of the general flow of events that take place both nationally and internationally after the end of the World War I. The country was amongst the defeated nations in World War I. It lost territories, its production was destroyed and finances were shattered.
The Society of academic economists, was founded on June 1, 1926. It was situated in Sofia. Very soon the society expanded and branches were established in Gabrovo, Ruse, Varna, Burgas, Yambol and Sevlievo. The founders – 88 people altogether, were part of the academic staff of the Free University of Political and Economic Science. Some of the leading figures of the society were Andrey Lyapchev, prof. Petko Stoyanov, prof. Dimitar Dobrev, Konstantin Bobchev, etc. They all have completed their university education abroad. They were figures with great professional skills and an entrepreneurial spirit.
    The Society of academic economists played an important role in promoting knowledge of economics. In the first year of its setting up the organization managed to attract supporters from all over the country and gained wide public popularity and support.
    The Society of academic economists also published one of the most prestigious periodicals in economics in Bulgaria — the journal Economic thought. Editor-in-Chief of the journal was prof. P. Stoyanov and two were the contributing editors – P. Leshtov, PhD and Y. Petkov, PhD. The journal became an ambience for professional discussions and exchange of ideas.
Key words: academic economists, public organizations, Bulgarian economy, economic thought in Bulgaria, the journal ‘Economic thought’, entrepreneurial spirit
JEL: N00, L30

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12. Strategy for Development of the Land Properties of the Rila Monastery in the First Quarter of the 20th Century

Author: Nikolay ATANASOV

Abstract:    In the present study some economic initiatives are reviewed that are developed by the management of Rila monastery in the first quarter of 20th century. The economic development of the monastery after the Liberation of Bulgaria in 1878 can be considered in three main directions. The first is related to granting concessions of the monastery’s lands, from the beginning of the 20th century. The problem with the concession of the monastery lands provokes the St. Synod to ask for its dissolution, which was difficult to be achieved, because of the nature of the association.
    An important period in the development of the monastic properties started in 1913, when the first proceeds for creating an economic department to the St. Synod were made. The new structure was obliged to monitor the proper exploitation of the monastery forests and especially those of the Rila monastery, in order to help the organization and effective development of the monastic land properties. Importance in this organization is given to the vine, fruit and vegetable growing. A united managing body is created, which should monitor the planned development of the properties; the necessary specialists are invited, who should develop each property. A special fund was created, financed by the revenues from the monastery network. Grouping of the monastery properties is carried out, which are placed under the direct management of the newly formed department and the directions for their development are determined.
    The next stage is determined by the land policy of the Bulgarian governments during the 1920s, which leads to disbandment of the church-economic department in 1924. The conditions in which the monastery properties are placed demand their rapid structuring into planned properties, which have estimates for a four-year period. The legal provisions give opportunities for planned properties to be developed, but make their external lending almost impossible and hinder their effective development. The Rila monastery properties’ planning gives us the opportunity to see a strategy for an economic development that conforms to the peculiarities of climate, soil and market conditions.
Key words: Rila monastery, monastery properties, monastery forests, concession, church-economic department
JEL: N34, N53, N93, Z12

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13. Business Environment in Bulgaria during the 1930s – Conditions and Factors

Author: Marko DIMITROV

Abstract:    The author aims to reveal the general conditions of doing business in Bulgaria during the 1930s within the context of significant changes in the world economy at that time and their impact on the Bulgarian economy. At the same time, the basic determinants of the changes in the economic conditions are outlined. A general comparison is made between the conditions of the 1920s and 1930s, and the conclusion is that there was an unprecedented increase of the direct government intervention in Bulgaria. The government also had a crucial role in the formation of the business environment in the 1930s. These interventions are a consequence of the unprecedented complication of the economic situation worldwide and in Bulgaria, as a result of the Great Depression of 1929.
    The author assesses the state intervention in the Bulgarian economy in the 1930s as adequate and effective. For this reason, the post-Depression economic recovery was relatively more effective compared to other countries with similar basic characteristics.
An essential feature of the activity of the Bulgarian state in improving the economic environment is the fact that it is carried out with exceptional economic and fiscal measures. The state does not exert political or ideological pressure on economic entities and thus, in terms of its economic policy, is closer to the policy pursued in democratic countries.
Key words: business history of Bulgaria; state economic policy; business history of the 20th century; state regulation; economic institutions; economic environment
JEL: N24; N44; N84; N94

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14. Examples of Cash-Waqfs in Ruse and Turnovo (17th –19th Centuries)

Author: Ayşe KAYAPINAR

Abstract:    The waqf institution played an important social and economic role in the Ottoman Empire. In principle, waqfs are based on real estate capital. The cash-waqfs were known in the Ottoman Empire until 15th c. and they became popular after some debates in the 16th c. They spread exclusively in the European and Anatolian provinces of the Empire. The practice of establishing monetary endowments during the Ottoman period was also observed in the Bulgarian lands. One of the main sources that provide information about the founders of cash-waqfs, the conditions of establishment and activity of these waqfs are the foundation charters (vakfiye). In this study examples of cash-waqfs from Ruse and Turnovo will be examined. The example of such a waqf from Ruse is from 1697/1698, while the Turnovo waqfs date from 1812 to 1851. The sources used to treat the topic are two defter-collections of foundation charters (vakfiye). The idea is to study the purpose of endowed мoney.
Key words: Balkans, Nothern Bulgaria, Rusthcuk, Turnovo, Waqfs
JEL: N84, N91

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15. Tsvyatko Pupov – a Merchant Who Got Involved in Politics by Chance

Author: Milko PALANGURSKI, Hristina HRISTOVA

Abstract:    Tsvyatko Pupov was a merchant who participated in the formation of the Bulgarian constitutional system in 1879 as a Member of the Constituent National Assembly. As a representative of the commercial elite of the Bulgarian National Revival period and after the Liberation, he developed as an entrepreneur at his own expense, and he earned a living as such. Although he was poorly educated and a typical product of the education system of the 1840s and 1850s, he had an obvious talent for trade. He gradually set up his own system of trade which was not very modern, but enabled him to control his costs and revenues per settlement and counterparty. He recorded them on a regular basis and, at the end of each year, he would recapitulate the individual open positions, which was in full accordance with the tradition and logic of National Revival merchants.
     Pupov did not seek to create any continuous working process. What mattered to him was to use all opportunities provided by what was produced in Bulgarian villages at the time – grain, leather, wool, butter and tallow, and to meet rural buyers’ needs of colonial goods. Thus, he proved to be an entrepreneur mainly on the urban-rural market who did not give up the opportunity to supply large merchants exporting grain through the ports of the Danube River.
Key words: Constituent National Assembly, trade practices, commodities, usury, commercial litigations.
JEL: N43, N53, N73, N83

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16. The Commercial Entrepreneurship of Mincho Genchev from Tryavna, According to His Archive from 1830s–1880s

Author: Irina DIMITROVA

Abstract:    During the Revival Tryavna was built up as a settlement with a well-defined craft and merchant community. The lack of fertile agricultural land determines the specific local activities based on the available natural resources. Craft production becomes a barter commodity not only for the domestic market but also abroad. Gradually, the artisan becomes merchant of his products, and accumulates a good financial capital. Craftsmen and traders also occupy an important position in communal life and dictates directions in settlement’s development. One of these representatives of the craft-trade stratum in Tryavna is Mincho Genchev. He is a tailor. He also appears as a merchant and leases grain and livestock, which became evident through the detailed registrations of the commercial transactions in his “Mixed Trade Notebook” (1836–1883). The notebook is part of his archive, which is preserved at the Bulgarian Historical Archive, National Library – Sofia.

    As a merchant he appears in the markets of Uzundzhovo, Tekirdağ and Edirne, from where he bought goods not only for his tailoring business, but also for his shop. The imported items can be divided into several categories: food, beverages and spices; tobacco; fabrics and textile products; metal products; medical products; books; jewelry, etc. His preserved archive can be used as a benchmark of the movement in commodity prices in different years. Thanks to his documented activity we can determine Mincho Genchev as one of the influential entrepreneurs – craftsmen and traders, who raised Tryavna as a proto-industrial and commercial center in the 19th century.
Keywords: Mincho Genchev, Tryavna, Bulgarian National Revival period, trade, craftsmanship, trade notebooks
JEL: N33, N73, N83

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17. Commercial Contracts in Greek language from the Archive of the firm “N. Minchoolu & E. Selveli and Company”

Author: Veselin GORANCHEV

Abstract:    One of the earliest examples of trade agreements was used in the ancient Arab world. The so-called “Akd”, which is part of the business documentation used by companies during the Umayyad Caliphate (661-750), is the equivalent of the trade contract. It was through contracts, that the Venetian “sea command” (commenda marittima) of the Florentine “company” (compagnia) was created and terminated.
   The emergence and widespread usage of the trade contract by entrepreneurs during the Bulgarian National Revival period is a result of the natural imposition of the new model of economic behaviour at the dawn of the Modern Age. An important role in this process was played by the economic contacts of our ancestors in the previous period (15th-17th centuries) with the merchants operating in the Bulgarian lands, subjects of foreign countries, whose economies and markets developed faster than those in the Ottoman Empire.
     In the Bulgarian and foreign archives, in the museum funds and in private collections there are many trade contracts stored, prepared by entrepreneurs during the Bulgarian Revival. Unfortunately, so far these sources of information have not been fully used in historical research. The oldest trade agreements known to us, in which the dominant participation of Bulgarians is attested, are from the end of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th century.
The study of trade contracts prepared by Bulgarian entrepreneurs during the National Revival period is an important process that would contribute to the study of the professional experience of Bulgarians during the era, their commercial and legal knowledge, as well as the level of development of major Bulgarian production and trade structures.
   The proposed article aims to present six commercial contracts and, as far as possible, to enrich the broad topic related to this type of business documents. It examines the history of this type of documents with economic content, their types, their appearance and development in the Bulgarian lands.
    The commercial contracts presented in the current article are part of Fund 82K – Trading House “Nikola Minchoolu & Evstati Selveli and company”, which is stored in DA – Veliko Turnovo. They cover the period from the early 40s to the early 50s of the 19th century. The documents were prepared in line with the tradition of the era in Greek language, which for a long time used to be the commercial language in the Balkans, while the traders from the Peninsula were collectively known as “Greek merchants”.
Key words: Bulgarian National Revival period, economic history, commercial contracts in Greek language, commercial house “N. Minchoolu & E. Selveli and company”, Turnovo
JЕL: N73, N93

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18. About the Craftsmen in Kaza of Osman Pazar, 1850s–1860s. An Attempt for Quantitative and Age Characteristics

Author: Miroslav TOSHEV

Abstract:    In the proposed article, based on a two ottoman Descriptions of craftsmen from 1859 and 1864–1865, preserved at the Oriental department of the National Library ‘St. St. Cyril and Methodius’, for kaza Osman Pazar and Osman Pazar, today Omurtag, are systemized and presented the number of craftsmen and the “guild”, number of the craftsmen – masters, journeymen and apprentices and their middle age through 1864-1865. The following conclusions are made based on the received data:
    In kaza Osman Pazar through 1858–1859 are registered in total 20 crafts, officially described as organized in 19 “guild”s and one “group”/ the craftsmen are divided into 359 masters, 107 journeymen and 81 apprentices. In total, with crafts are occupied 583 people.
    In Osman Pazar town through 1864-1865 are registered 24 crafts, from which are readable the names of 22 and the other 2 are hidden because of a damage in the paper. The craftsmen are officially described as organized in 24 „guilds”. The tailors have 2 separate organizations, divided by a religious principle and innkeepers and bartenders are united in 1 “guild”. The craftsmen are divided in 214 masters, 88 journeymen and apprentices 55+1-2?. In total, in crafts are occupied 357+1-2? People.
    The age of the listed journeymen and apprentices is really high and stands out sharply from the common accepted ideas. Most probably, in this case is about hired workers who don’t have capital to open their own shop or the market is full and there is no place for them.
    In the biggest part of the crafts, Journeymen and apprentices are not registered, probably because the father masters are teaching the sons to their craft. These students and apprentices by itselffind itmore profitable not to separate as independent masters, so they won’t invest their capital in new tools and workshops. At the same time, as they don’t register officially, the don’t pay taxes.
    In the period 1859–1865 in Osman Pazar are registered new crafts. It should be underlined that almost all of them can define their selves as delivering “luxury” services and goods. Therefore, old Osman Pazar and the region are developing successfully, the local people are getting rich and in the local economy are discovered new market niches for different services and “goods of the luxury”.
    In conclusion – during the 60’s years of XIXc. Osman Pazaroutlines as a significant crafts center which can compare by number of craftsmen with the famous “proto-industrial” centers as Kotel and Troyan.
Key words: craftsmen, kaza Osman Pazar, 1850s, 1860s, quantitative and age characteristics, esnaf
JEL: N 01, R 11, J 44

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19. Karlovo’s Merchants at the Beginning of 1860s

Author: Aleksandar ZLATANOV

Abstract:    The town of Karlovo is one of the centers adjacent to the Balkan Mountains, which experienced rapid economic, cultural, educational and demographic development in the nineteenth-century Ottoman Rumelia. A number of circumstances determine this multifaceted development. The specific geographical and climatic conditions, as well as the fact that the Karlovo’s Non-Muslim population had almost no land, turned the city into a developed proto-industrial and craft center from the 1820s onwards. A particularly important place in the economic development of the regional center from the beginning of the 19th c. was occupied by the textile crafts, which from the 1840s would even develop into a large proto-industrial textile manufacturing in the Ottoman Balkans. Those factors were the prerequisites for the emergence of a successful small trade and entrepreneurial class in Karlovo from the early 1830s trading with those locally made textile goods. The high quality textile raw materials and finished products from Karlovo soon began to be sold very successfully in the major domestic Ottoman markets and fairs, even in Wallachia and beyond. The main goods that “come out” of Karlovo were: braids, wool, bags, yarn, baize, frieze, socks, candles, tallow, rose oil, i.e. The label “Karlovo’s products” became synonymous of high quality in the Ottoman markets, and that of Karlovo’s merchants – as one of the most honest ones. Thus, from the 1830s until the Liberation in 1878, Karlovo’s merchants developed a dense network of trade links with important economic points and cities along the Danube, throughout Rumelia, and beyond the Ottoman Empire. The present contribution focuses on several unknown Karlovo’s trade notebooks from the middle of the 19th c., found in the State Archive – Plovdiv. The notebooks of Karlovo’s merchant operating in the Ottoman capital date in the period 1862–1863 and illustrate a successful entrepreneurial activity of considerable capacity.
    The network of associates and suppliers is located mainly in Karlovo, its region and the port town of Tulcea, which increased the efficiency and frequency of the deliveries, as well as their planning. Characteristic features of the merchants are the not very large turnovers and amounts in its activity, as well as the great variety of goods transported and sold in the Ottoman capital. This showed significant flexibility, resourcefulness and quick decision-making in an uncertain market environment.
Key words: Karlovo, Karlovo’s merchants, 19th century, trade, textile production, textile crafts, wool, proto-industrialization
JEL: N33, N73, N93, O14

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20. Between Commercial Entrepreneurship and Scientific Publicist and Political Field: Features of Stoyan Pranchov’s Short Life (1862–1889)

Author: Margarita MARINOVA

Abstract:    The article traces the life of Stoyan Georgiev Pranchov, heir of a wealthy Revival merchant family from Koprivshtitsa as an example of the realization of the second generation of merchants after the Liberation. It is stated that his upbringing, education and personal qualities provide him with an opportunity for a commercial career. He graduated from the Vienna Academy of Commerce and the Higher School of Science and Politics in Paris, where he formed his economic and political views. During his studies in Paris (1882–1884) he worked for the interests of his father’s commercial house in Vienna “G. S. Pranchov&Cie”. His motives for becoming an independent trader in Bulgaria, and not in Vienna, are emerging. The significance of his scientific and journalistic activity is analyzed and evaluated. It is concluded that under the influence of various factors – health, brutal struggles during the political crisis of 1886–1887, and others, he fails to unleash his entrepreneurial and scientific potential. He died at the age of 27.
Key words:
Stoyan Pranchov, commercial entrepreneurship, literary entrepreneurship trade, liberalism, science, politics, Vienna Academy of Commerce, trading house ‘Hr. P Tupchileshtov’, Plovdiv, Koprivshtitsa
JEL: N73, N93

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21. Turnovo Entrepreneur Nikola Hadzhi Slavchev

Author: Svetla ATANASOVA

Abstract:    The professional biography of Nikola Hadzhi Slavchev – one of the pioneers of the brewing industry in our country is the embodiment of the life maxim that success begins with a fresh start. However, the guarantees for this are rooted in the leadership qualities of the entrepreneur – measured risk, effective solutions for the production and marketing, and a clear vision for the future. The well-educated Nikola h. Slavchev, a school alumnus of Robert College in Constantinople and the Military School in Sofia, changed his life in 1892, taking responsibility for his father’s heritage. Initially, the Hadzhi Slavchevi brothers in partnership with Ivan Halachev established a general partnership for the production and trading of beer. In 1906 the partnership was broken down. The crisis was solved by Nikola hadzhi Slavchev. He gathered the assets and liabilities of the company, invested his capital in the establishment of a limited company “Nikola Hadzhi Slavchev”. As an unlimitedly responsible member, he lead thoughtfully the brewing company until 1923. During the Balkan wars and the World War I (1912–1918), the production and consumption of beer increased enormously and the factory in Turnovo town became one of the most sought-after partners.
    In parallel with this activity Nikola h. Slavchev was a concessionaire of the coal mine “LEV” in the region of Tryavna.
   He made the first attempts to create a housing fund for his workers. Donation was not alien to him either. During his lifetime, he established a trustee fund for the education of poor children and support for cultural and educational institutions.
Key words:
Nikola Hadzhi Slavchev, Turnovo, limited company, brewing industry, capital
JEL: N01; N83

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22. Building up Modernity: Entrepreneurial Bulgarian Architects in Veliko Turnovo (1878–1944)

Author: Radosveta KIROVA-DELCHEVA

Abstract:  As construction proves the most indicative economic marker, the correlation between architecture and economics outlines the overall political and economic context as the major factors that determined the architectural outlook of Veliko Turnovo and reveals symptomatic facts about the professional activities of the architects who worked there during the period of the Third Bulgarian State (1878-1944). The entrepreneurial activities of the Bulgarian architects, who constituted the modern townscape of Veliko Turnovo, are analyzed within the political, economic and legislative context in order to reveal concrete professional careers’ details. Comparison with the undertakings of the architects, born in Veliko Turnovo and the region, who migrated to other towns, serves as a base for summarizing major tendencies in the architectural profession in the period.
Key words:
architect, entrepreneur, building contractor, Veliko Turnovo, building materials production
JEL: L74, N63, N64, N93, N94

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23. The Cooperation between Svishtov Municipality and the Local Entrepreneurs from the Liberation to the End of the 19th Century

Author: Emilia VACHEVA

Abstract:  This article reveals the activities of the Svishtov City Municipality related to the award of public contracts awarded through a public tender. The contracts concluded with the private entrepreneurs are considered, the difficulties in the realization of the projects are revealed. The research is based mainly on the valuable information from the preserved archives of the Svishtov city administration. Information from the State Gazette was attracted, as well as some local periodicals. Data from previous studies on the socio-economic development after the Liberation, as well as from local lore studies, were also used. The available information shows that, in general, local entrepreneurs do not have a strong interest in the public procurement of the Svishtov city administration. This is one of the reasons for the lack of arranged auctions, corrupt deals and benefits for people close to the government.
Key words:
Svishtov city municipality, entrepreneur, public auction, trade, infrastructure, municipal bath, school buildings, construction of commercial buildings
JEL: N73

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24. The Tobacco and the Entrepreneurship of Ruscho Vulkov Mirkovich. Some Features of Bulgarian Economic Reality in the Late 1880s and 1890s

Author: Valentin KITANOV

Abstract:    Ruscho Vulkov Mirkovich was a typical representative of the modern Bul-garian economic elite formed during the Bulgarian Revival. His long and successful com-mercial biography is a convincing testimony to the deep and lasting economic and social changes that occurred in the nineteenth century, which are characteristic not only of his hometown Sliven, but also of the entire Bulgarian national territory. The professional experience he gained for over four decades in the field of trade with aba garment, wool, foreign merchandise, salt, foods, and other goods, allowed him to maintain a very high rate of commercial activity, particularly after 1878 at a number of market centres such as Sliven, Constantinople, Yambol, Burgas, and Straldzha. The well-known Sliven entre-preneur was fully committed to his trade endeavours and at the same time he was an active public figure – something typical for that period. After 1887, although of his re-spectable age, he turned to the field of tobacco, becoming a pioneer of one of the most successful industries in the Bulgarian commercial development by founding a tobacco factory in Yambol through the joint-stock company R. V. Mirkovich & Co.
    The available documents in the Bulgarian archives allow us to conclude that Ru-scho Mirkovich’s decision to engage with the tobacco industry was a carefully consid-ered step. He had the approval of his partners and attracted skilled experts to ensure the smooth running of the tobacco factory. The company was part of Yambol’s eco-nomic infrastructure from the late 1880s and throughout the 1890s. The present study focuses specifically on this aspect of Ruscho Vulkov Mirkovich’s active work as evi-dence of entrepreneurial sense and adaptability in the conditions of the dynamically changing economic reality of post-liberation Bulgaria.
Key words:
tobacco, tobacco factory, industrial development, Principality of Bul-garia, joint stock company
JEL: N83, N93

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25. Тhe Hidden Face of the Patriotic Entrepreneur: Balkan Opium Traders at the End of the 19th and the Beginning of the 20th Centuries

Author: Dimitar GRIGOROV, Petar DOBREV

Abstract:  It is a little-known fact that in the Interwar period between 40 and 80% of opium for the world markets was produced in the Balkans. Yugoslavia and Turkey were particularly active in this regard, but Bulgaria was also looking for its place under the sun. Since the end of the 19th century, Bulgarian governments had been trying to stimulate the cultivation of poppy, in order to produce opium. A number of enterprising traders and farmers were embarking on the crop in question and turning it into a lucrative business, maneuvering between changing international and domestic regulations. This paper tries to shed some light on the murky territory of opium entrepreneurship in the Balkans until the World War II, asking whether all successful entrepreneurial efforts are necessarily beneficial to society.
    Based on archival analysis our paper presents research that for the first time examines opium’s role in some of the nation-states that emerged from the disintegration of the Ottoman Empire – Bulgaria, Turkey and the Kingdom of Yugoslavia. We examine the multiethnic trade network that supplied opium and its derivative drugs not only in the Balkans, but also around the world. By using the example of key drug lords like Elie Eliopoulos we try to show that gangsters often had the same virtues related to the revered national capitalist and entrepreneur: decisiveness, risk taking, innovative thinking, the ability to form international networks. In this regard we are asking whether all successful entrepreneurial efforts are necessarily beneficial to society. Our paper is also a reminder that most successful entrepreneurs in most cases used some form of government protection and incentives.
Key words:
Balkan trade networks, opium, drug trade, organized crime, entrepreneurship, Bulgaria, Ottoman Empire, Yugoslavia, Turkey
JEL: N13, N23, N73, N93

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26. Hristo Raykov – An Entrepreneur аnd Industrialist (1896–1967)


Abstract:    Hristo Raykov is an example of a rapidly getting rich industrialist. He was born in the village of Dalboki Tomchevtsi, Tryavna region, Dryanovo district, in 1896 in a poor family. From a very young age he focused on independent trade in wool and fabrics. In 1924 he settled permanently in Gabrovo. Having accumulated enough capital, the ambitious entrepreneur directs his interests to the industry to close the cycle of supply and processing of wool to the final product. In 1927 he was already a major shareholder and director of a textile factory.
    Hristo Raykov walked the path to wealth for twenty years – from a small trader, he managed to become the owner of factories in Gabrovo, Sliven and Sofia, for which companies work throughout the country. In 16 years he has increased its capital from BGN 5 million to BGN 200 million. Hristo Raykov is a man without special education, but with great ambition, will and energy, a man who does not trust accountants and directors. With the famous Gabrovo thrift, he personally manages his enterprises, knows the production in detail, knows what is done in every corner of his factories, always strives to be first. Maybe that’s why he earned the nickname “The Bulgarian Henry Ford” of his time. The nationalization on December 23, 1947 found him with assets of over BGN 1 billion. In the 1940s, Hristo Raykov was considered the most successful industrialist in Gabrovo and one of the richest people in Bulgaria.
Key words:
Gabrovo, trade, industrialists, entrepreneur, wool textile enterprise, auctions, Bulgarian Army, The Great Depression in Bulgaria
JEL: N14, N64, N94

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27. Two Examples of ‘Self-made’ Entrepreneurs in Bulgaria during the Transition in the 1990s

Author: Iliyana MARCHEVA

Abstract:    Based on interviews and publications in the press, the personal stories of several businessmen without proven ties to criminal groups or political authorities, who are among the successful businessmen so far, are examined. These are people from the real sector, from the middle class businessmen in the field of production of packaging and pumps for the perfume and food industry (Peyo Peev, Alfrida-Peev, Gabrovo) and for the production of high class meat products and sausages (Kiril Vatev, Tandem – V). On this basis, as a case study, some common features in their self-creation are derived. They show the difficulties and peculiarities in the self-creation of entrepreneurs in Bulgaria during the transition. The main ones can be defined as follows. The success of two is due to the accumulated preliminary experience and even capital, their personal qualities – perseverance, vision, strong spirit, their desire to follow and maintain a consistently high quality of their products. And last but not least – to the good pay of workers for quality work. Although they manage to create themselves in opposition to power and corruption, they subsequently seek politics to use it for their business interests. Charity is their way to establish themselves positively in society.
Key words: self-made entrepreneurs, Tandem-V, Alfrida-Peev, Peyo Peev, Kiril Vatev, transition
JEL: D22; N8; N84

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