Croat Achieves Business Dreams in Canada, Wants to Expand in Croatia

By 8 October 2019

Mateo from Rijeka, Croatia, arrived in the Canadian city of Toronto with some of his personal belongings and five thousand Canadian dollars, three thousand of which were his savings throughout the years, and a thousand dollars were given to him by his family. He didn't know anyone, and he didn't have a recommendation, writes Poslovni Dnevnik on the 8th of October, 2019.

Mateo Polić was born in 1990 in the Northern Ariatic city of Rijeka, where he graduated from school, after that, he graduated from the Faculty of Economics in Zagreb, majoring in Business Economics. While studying in Zagreb, he met a few people who were resident or staying in Canada because of their work, which in some ways expanded his business perspective.

''I got a job offer in one company for 1,600 kuna. It was part of the program of employment of highly educated persons for vocational training without employment. I refused and decided to leave Croatia. Canada was my choice. I applied for a working holiday visa, which at the time was granted once per year, in February, under the "fastest finger" system, without looking for any other conditions.

At that time, the Canadian Embassy issued 275 such visas a year, and several thousand were reported that year. I was literally sitting in front of my computer waiting for a some news and - I succeeded, writes Novi list.

I told myself and them - I'm going to try it, so as to at least use the one year visa. Namely, after a year, 90 percent of people return from Canada because they cannot extend their residence permit in the country. A visa can only be extended if, if you've found a job, and you can prove that you're better than any Canadian applying for that same job, Polić explains.

A few months after obtaining a permanent visa, Mateo decided to move on, to change jobs. He left Michael Page, a company that recruits people for work, something like an employment agency.

''After Michael Page, I joined Shopify, which allows the fast startup of a website where I worked as an in-house headhunter. After three years working for others, in May 2016, I decided to start my own recruitment firm, Accentio Group, and we're focused on marketing and sales. I have two employees, I work five days a week, from 08:00 to 18:00, I'm free on the weekends. So far I'm very pleased, I'm making a decent living. However, I've got no intention of just stopping there,'' Polić told Novi list.

I saved about a thousand dollars a month, and after three years, I decided to invest all my savings from that period, a total of 36 thousand Canadian dollars, into my own business. I took the risk, but it paid off. I now have thirty clients from four countries - Canada, America, the Netherlands and Germany.

I have plans to expand to England, but my wish is to expand to Croatia, says Mateo Polić, adding that at the moment he is not considering returning to Croatia, but does want to open a branch here.

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