Samuel Doria Medina Sells Soboce to Completely Devote Himself to the Bolivian People

LA PAZ, Bolivia, Dec. 16, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Samuel Doria Medina, leader of the Unidad Nacional party, announced today that he has sold his controlling shares of Soboce, Bolivia's largest cement production company. Mr. Doria Medina made the announcement after meeting with shareholders and officially listing the sale on the Bolivian stock exchange.

Soboce was acquired by the Peru-based Holding Cementero S.A., which has holdings in the dairy, food distribution, and service sectors. Prior to the full acquisition, Holding Cementero S.A. had an existing 49% stake in Soboce.

Mr. Doria Medina explained, "I sold Soboce to completely devote myself to the people of Bolivia. In light of the October election results, which made my party the leading opposition force, I felt this was necessary. I can now fulfill my obligation to the more than 1,250,000 Bolivians who called out for a path toward more opportunities, more jobs, and better public safety."

Mr. Doria Medina announced he will commit a substantial portion of the sale to charitable projects in Bolivia, including expansion of the Jisunu Foundation, which Soboce created to operate its charitable activities. Mr. Doria Medina will retain control of the Jisunu Foundation and its popular CITES program, which provides training for Bolivians on job and business skills. The CITES program focuses on artisanal activities and largely trains women on running their own small businesses. Under Doria Medina, Soboce consistently invested 10% of its annual profits in charitable works like CITES.

Soboce was founded in 1925 in Viacha, La Paz. Mr. Doria Medina took control of the firm in 1987. At that time, Soboce had 200 employees; now the company directly and indirectly employs over 10,000 Bolivians. Holding Cementero S.A. has committed that these Bolivian jobs will continue after the sale and will invest in the next stages of Soboce's growth.

At his press conference today, Doria Medina thanked the company's employees and thanked the people of Bolivia for the opportunity to continue his public service. "I succeeded in building up Soboce; now, together, we can all succeed in building up Bolivia, with more opportunities and more public safety," he said.

About Samuel Doria Medina: Mr. Doria Medina is the leader of Unidad Nacional and led the Democratic Unity alliance as the largest opposition bloc in Bolivia. He came second in Bolivia's presidential election in October. Mr. Doria Medina acquired Soboce in 1987, and during his tenure, Soboce has played a pivotal role in building Bolivia's infrastructure. He is also the director of the Jisunu Foundation, which provides jobs and training to Bolivians. Mr. Doria Medina is a graduate of Universidad Católica Boliviana and Arizona State University, and received his Master's Degree in Public Finance from the London School of Economics. He served as Bolivia's Minister of Planning from 1989 to 1993.

CONTACT: In the U.S. and Latin America: Melissa Daly +1 646-322-9192 In Bolivia: Graciela Rivera 591 6970 2696 Or Erika Apaza 591 7200 0039Source:Samuel Doria Medina