Croatia's State-Run Toilet Paper Business Allegedly Shows Signs of Life

By , 17 Feb 2016, 09:55 AM Business

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Signs of life for Croatia's beleaguered toilet paper industry.

Despite recent media reports that Croatian state-run toilet paper company is in danger of collapsing, the company representatives claim that nothing could be further from the truth. "The market for toilet papers will always exist and sell products which people need. Also, we want to offer a real Made in Croatia product", that is how representatives of Mekkoo company explain the reasons for starting their business, reports Jutarnji List on February 17, 2016.

Mekkoo is a subsidiary of Narodne Novine, a public company whose core business is publishing the Official Gazette of the Republic of Croatia. Many people wonder why is such a state-run business even being launched in the 21st century in a country which is supposed to be a market economy.

One year after the company was founded, its three-member board of directors was dismissed, and new general manager Dario Kos was brought in. Although the company at first denied the allegations that the management had been dismissed due to poor business results, now they are being more honest.

"The management was replaced for two reasons. The first was the fact that it had been determined that Mekkoo can operate without a three-member board of directors, so we have decided to reduce costs. The other reason is that the management team had not achieved results which were expected. They had problems in terms of distributing the product, while the manufacturing process was not sufficiently efficient. This changes will bring savings and better positioning of the product on the market", said the head of Narodne Novine corporate communications Bojan Vinek.

Narodne Novine have invested 63 million kuna into the business, and plans call for a premium brand of toilet paper and paper towels to be produced by 13 employees in a factory in Krapina.

"The long-term plan is to launch our own brand Mekkoo and place it on the shelves of Croatian retail chains, but that is not urgent, and we plan to do in the next several months. The preparations are extensive and complex, and we will launch it when everything is ready", Vinek added.

The company believes that the investment could pay off in the next six or seven years, depending on how successful they are in distributing their products. "Croatian market includes almost 80 percent of imported toilet paper. We plan to create a product which will be good enough to be able to compete with the most famous brands in Croatia. We are confident that we will win our position in the market", concluded Vinek.

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  • The roads are wet and slippery in Lika mountain area and in Dalmatia. Rock and land sliding is possible on the DC1 state road through Lika as well as on the DC8 Adriatic road. Traffic is dense in cities and on their detour roads. During the day difficulties can be expected in roadwork areas. Tonight (27 February) 7pm-6am traffic is suspended on the A6 Rijeka-Zagreb motorway between Delnice and Oštrovica junctions in direction Rijeka, detour: DC3/DC501 state roads. In Učka tunnel in Istria one lane is free only every night 10pm-6am till 3/4 March. Drivers are invited to keep distance and to adjust the speed to road conditions. The headlights have to be on during the day as well. One lane is free only/traffic is flowing in reduced lanes on the following motorways:-A1 Zagreb-Split-Ploče at Božići viaduct in direction Split, between Novigrad and Karlovac junctions 42nd-40th km in direction Zagreb, at Rašćane viaduct in direction Dubrovnik; -A3 Bregana-Lipovac between Kutina and Novska junctions 118th-121st km in both directions; -A4 Zagreb-Goričan at Kraljevečki Novaki junction 93rd-94th km in both directions till 13 March; -A4 Zagreb-Goričan in Hrastovec tunnel in both directions 1-11 March; -A6 Rijeka-Zagreb at Svilno viaduct 78th-80th km between Orehovica and Čavle junctions in each direction till 1 June, in Vršek tunnel in direction Zagreb; -Rijeka detour road in the exit lane of Rujevica junction in direction Rupa till 16 March; -A8 in Istria on the section Lupoglav-Učka tunnel. Due to winter driving conditions there is a traffic ban on freight vehicles with trailers and all other vehicles have to use the winter equipment in Lika mountain area on the DC42 at Poljanak. Due to roadworks traffic is suspended: -on the DC1 state road in Lučko and Stupnik (Zagreb); -on the DC8 Adriatic road at Posedarje till 10 April; -on the DC6 state road, section Glina-Dvor border crossing till 15 March, detour: Glina (DC37)-Petrinja-Hrvatska Kostajnica-Dvor; -on the DC34 Valpovo-Josipovac state road; -on the DC206 Valentinovo-Petrovsko state road; -on the DC228 Jurovski Brod-Ozalj-Karlovac state road at Ozalj. Traffic is regulated by traffic signals/one road lane is free only:-on the DC1 state road at Tušilović; -on the DC1 Sinj-Klis Grlo state road at Dicmo; -on the DC8 Adriatic road on the section Kaštel Stari-Kaštel Gomilica, at Podstrana, on the section Zaton Doli-Bistrina, at Srebreno; -on the DC66 Pula-Most Raša state road; -on the DC75 Poreč detour road, section Vrvari-Bijela; -on the DC303 Rovinjsko Selo-Brajkovići-Kurili state road. 15 November 2016-15 April 2017 winter equipment is mandatory on the winter sections of the state roads in Croatia (it includes four winter tyres or four summer tyres with chains ready for use).
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