Sunday, 9 December 2018

Small and Medium Croatian Companies to Receive 25 Million Euro

The Investment Plan for Europe (Juncker's plan) is one of the key EU steps in boosting investment in Europe, aimed primarily at creating jobs and boosting growth. A large sum of money from the plan will flow into both small and medium Croatian companies.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 7th of December, 2018, the European Investment Fund (EIF) will support Privredna banka Zagreb (PBZ) with the guarantee contract for 25 million euro's worth of new credit for innovative small and medium-sized Croatian companies (MSPs) and those of a smaller size (up to 500 employees).

The EIF guarantee has been secured through the Investment Plan for Europe (Juncker's plan), through the Innovfin SME Guarantee Program, established by the EIF, part of the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the European Commission (EC).

Innovfin's guarantee enables innovative MSPs and small and medium Croatian companies to borrow under more favourable conditions than currently available on the Croatian banking market, meaning that the loans included in the Innovfin portfolio will enable MSPs, among other things, to grow and and open up new job opportunities.

Carlos Moedas, the EU's commissioner for research, science and innovation, stated: "I welcome the new contract supported by Juncker's plan and Obzor 2020 in Croatia, which brings new funding for innovative Croatian small and medium companies, and that's often exactly what they needed to launch their new products, integrate innovative processes, create new jobs, and expand their business outside of the local market.''

Dario Scannapieco, EIB's vice president said: "Innovation and MSP support is one of the top priorities for the EIF and the EIB Group. Innovations and MSPs are crucial to Croatia and to the European Union in its efforts to improve and maintain competitiveness on local and global markets, create new jobs, and create conditions for sustainable economic development. We're happy to find a reliable partner in PBZ for such an important task.''

Dinko Lucić, CEO of Privredna banka Zagreb, said: "For many years, Privredna banka Zagreb has been very active in establishing and supporting programs aimed at developing the MSP segment and striving to contribute more to the strong growth of small and medium-sized enterprises in the country. The bank has confirmed this by participating in the COSME program and now in InnovFin, through which innovative MSP clients will have further facilitated access to funding sources and more favourable lending will be enabled.''

The Investment Plan for Europe (Juncker's plan) is one of the key European Union steps in boosting investment in Europe, creating jobs and boosting growth. The EIB Group plays a key role in this investment plan.

With the European Investment Funds (EFSI) funds, the EIB and the European Investment Fund (EIF) can take on a larger share of risk in projects, encouraging private investors to participate more in these projects. Initially, EFSI was to launch 315 billion euro in investments across the European Union over a period of three years, until mid-2018.

In December 2017, the European Parliament and the EU's member states reached agreement on extending EFSI's lifetime to the year 2020 and thus increasing the financial resources to a massive 500 billion euro. In addition to the EFSI, the new EIAH advisory platform helps both the public and the private sector's project promoters to structure investment projects more professionally. The investment plan should also create an EU regulatory environment that is favoured by investments.

Until November 2018, Juncker's plan has already mobilised 360 billion euro in additional investment, including over one billion euro in Croatia alone, with 850,000 small and medium Croatian companies benefiting from easier access to finances.

Make sure to stay up to date with our dedicated business and politics pages for more information.

Saturday, 8 December 2018

Rimac Automobili Receives Loan for Capacity Development and Expansion

A huge cash loan from the European Investment Bank for Mate Rimac's company Rimac Automobili has been signed and sealed.

Mate Rimac is without a doubt the face of one of Croatia's most inspiring entrepreneurial stories ever. Success doesn't come easily in Croatia, and while many prefer to complain about that face or simply go off and seek it elsewhere, only to realise that nowhere is quite as easy to navigate as you're told, people like Mate Rimac keep on fighting and make things happen.

Croatia is full of talent and it spills out onto all possible fields, from sport to business to invention and innovation, this little country of approximately four million people has it all. Despite being the home of people like Luka Modric and Mate Rimac, what Croatia doesn't have, however, is a set of state authorities who want to make life more simple for that talent to not only remain within the country, but to manage to develop and flourish here. Just like what was stated previously, Mate Rimac and Rimac Automobili have conquered those barriers, meaning others can, too.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 7th of December, 2018, the vice president of the European Investment Bank (EIB), Dario Scannapieco, has signed a contract with Privredna banka Zagreb for a loan guarantee for Rimac Automobili, totalling an enormous 30 million euro.

The European Investment Bank and Rimac Automobili then signed the very welcome loan of 30 million euro for research purposes, as well as for the company's capacity development and expansion in Sveta Nedjelja.

In addition to the huge loan provided to Rimac Automobili, another loan worth 25 million euro loan was given to innovative small and medium-sized companies.

Make sure to follow our dedicated Made in Croatia and business pages for more information on Rimac Automobili, other Croatian companies, products and services, as well as all you need to know about the business and investment climate in Croatia.

Wednesday, 5 December 2018

Rijeka Company Succeeds with EU Funds and Bioplastic Development Projects

One Rijeka company has so far raised an impressive six million euro thanks to European Union funds and currently has eight European partners working alongside them on the new ''Effective'' project.

As Darko Bicak/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 4th of December, 2018, the Rijeka company in question is Mi-Plast, it has played an active role in various EU research projects for the last several years, and has successfully withdrawn a total of six million euro from the Horizon 2020 program, as well as from numerous other research platforms.

The company deals with platic, and these roles have been mainly in regard to bioplastic development projects which are being conducted with large players from Europe, for which the EU has provided an enormous 80 million euro, while the Rijeka company accounts for about 7 percent of the amount.

Despite success, the Rijeka company didn't intend to simply stop there, and Bio-Mi was then established, which specialises exclusively in biopolymers and bioplastics, since Mi-Plast has positioned itself on the market of standard plastics and is planning, at the end of the project, to bring yet more innovative products with more value to the market.

As was explained by Filip Miketa, the founder and director of Bio-Mi, they are currently working on the Effective project, which, in the coming years, could result in the first quantities of bioplastics and packaging coming from Rijeka.

"This project is one of the industry's most comprehensive initiatives, it aims at redesigning the entire product value chain and ultimately stimulating economic growth. The project consortium comprises eight countries and consists of renewable raw materials producers, leaders in raw material processing technologies, semi-finished and finished product manufacturers, AquafilSLO and Circular Change (Slovenia), Aquafil, Carvico, Life Cycle Engineering and Novamont (Italy), Südzucker and Vaude (Germany), Balsan (France), H & M Group, Bio-Mi and CIRCE (Spain),'' stated Miketa.

He added that one of the key goals is the effective development of sustainable bionylon, made entirely from biological components using renewable raw materials. The validation of the obtained nylon is planned alongside partners such as H&M, Carvico, Vaude and Balsan. The bionylon will also be used for textiles and carpets. The Rijeka company will also see that biopolyesters are developed for the packaging of various industrial products.

The recycling of this nylon will help achieve the goals of the circular economy as well as create an alternative in the industry. The project is being cofinanced by H2020 in the amount of 7.1 million euro.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business and Made in Croatia pages for more information on Croatian companies, products and services, as well as on doing business in Croatia.


Click here for the original article by Darko Bicak for Poslovni Dnevnik

Tuesday, 4 December 2018

Pula Company Raises Wages, Plans Move to New Location

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 4th of December, 2018, every year, this Pula company produces almost 4,000 tons of varying baked products, and it's mostly bread and other rolls whose sales are continuing to grow.

Brionka, a Pula company, is the leading Istrian bakery and confectionery producer operating within the wider Rijeka area, and in early December is marketed popular and traditional dry Christmas cakes to mark the beginning of the festive season, as well as sweet bread with raisins. Over the past month, they have placed a new dessert on the market, namely a marble cake, and they are currently preparing for the upcoming placement of three more new desserts, cheesecake and cakes with a cookie which will be available at the end of this year or at the latest, early next year, according to Ivan Smetko, the production manager of the aforementioned Pula company.

As Glas Istre writes, in spite of numerous past doubts and the unenviable debts of Brionka's former management body, this Pula company is now operating positively, the salaries of its 250 employees increased by 20 percent, and the plans are to move to a new location in Pula or even in nearby Vodnjan where they could work from one place and thus further reduce the company's overall expenses, says Brionka's managing director, Mladen Anić.

As stated, this Pula company produces an enormous amount of food, with their production of almost 4,000 tons of bakery products, the most being bread rolls which have seen company sales grow by three to five percent. The biggest increase of 20 to 30 percent per year, however, is owing to the company's more salty range, including the beloved burek, which is commonly picked up on the go owing to the fast pace of life and the need for fast food.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business and Made in Croatia pages for more information on Croatian companies, products and services, what's going on in the business world in Croatia, and doing business here.

Monday, 3 December 2018

Croatian Company Based in Vukovar Experiences Continued Success

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 3rd of December, 2018, over the past five years, ENNA has become a regionally recognisable Croatian company, strongly positioned in the field of energy, logistics, distribution and infrastructure, making a name for itself as a very serious, integrated logistic operator unique in the region.

While news about the emigration from Croatia and especially from Slavonia continues to depress the masses everyday, for the Vukovar-based Energia naturalis group (ENNA) in 2018, positive news about new investments and good business results came about. Engaged in the energy sector, the company decided to take advantage of the plethora of benefits of the common European energy market which opened up to Croatia after joining the European Union. They spent years learning about other markets and were intensively preparing, and the results of trade on the aforementioned common European market came in 2017, and eventually reflected in some excellent business results.

The headquarters of ENNA lies in the Eastern Croatian city of Vukovar, and it continues to successfully operate through companies located in Hungary, Switzerland, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, and Slovenia.

Their success is based primarily on a wealth of knowledge, this young and ambitious team are oriented towards the digitalisation of the processes that take place within the company. In a way, ENNA represents a new generation on the Croatian business scene, recognising opportunities in a liberalised and growing integrated common European market. Thanks to this, this Croatian company achieved an incredibly impressive 1.2 billion euro in consolidated revenues last year.

Over the past two years, ENNA has invested more than 78 million euro into its business, strategically deciding on investments which make the most out of the synergistic potential within their own company portfolio. This year, they have continued to invest in rail freight and in the Port of Ploče, ESCO, various renewable energy sources, and energy trading, in which they remain the most successful. The ENNA ESCO company is currently completing the energetic reconstruction of a general hospital in Varaždin, and the energetic renewal of the police academy building in Zagreb is still ongoing. At the same time, in the Vukovar economic zone, the cogeneration plant for the production of electricity for biomass - ENNA biomass Vukovar and the new PPD business building, are now being completed.

The confirmation of their serious position is certainly proven by the collaboration with globally successful foreign partners. This Vukovar-based Croatian company has cooperated with VTTI, one of the largest operators and owners of oil storage terminals in the world, with Gazprom in the natural gas trade, and with INA, they're developing a strategic partnership in the Petrokemija recapitalisation project.

The ENNA Group is in an intense digitalization process, with particular attention being paid to the education of its employees, through its own education and training system.

The real core of Energia naturalis is a PPD group that deals with the import, sale, supply and continued distribution of natural gas, and that story is one of seventeen long years of unwavering persistence.

As stated, that story started about seventeen years ago, PPD has been operating since 2001 and its beginnings are related to obtaining gas concessions in the town of Vukovar and nine municipalities in the wider area of Vukovar-Srijem County. The result is them becoming the 100 percent owner(s) of this high quality distribution network in a country that is entirely built on private investment.

Their capital was already over 100 million kuna, while their annual income was 50 million kuna. Over the last ten years, the company has managed to gain more than 13,000 permanent customers. The opening of the gas market, marked up as one of the conditions for Croatia's accession to the European Union, finally occurred in 2012, with Croatia joining the bloc the following year. PPD welcomed the move, armed with the knowledge and experience of the neighbouring Hungarian market which they had been constantly visiting and studying for years before.

Since then, their revenue has increased significantly, and their interest has increased alongside that revenue growth. In the ENNA group, which is the owner of PPD and twenty other companies, 300 people are employed, and that is a figure which continues to rise.

Special engagement in the Vukovar region is considered a socially responsible business, in which ENNA and PPD participate through the continuous training of their employees and the New tomorrow (Novo sutra) foundation, which invests in socially useful projects in Slavonia and in scholarships for Slavonian students.

In addition to investing back into their own business and employees, they also invest in sport - and are the proud sponsors of successful clubs such as RK PPD Zagreb and the ENNA Vukovar women's volleyball club. Thus, in addition to achieving excellent results, this Croatian company can also boast of investing in children and young people through some of the things that mean the most to them.

Make sure to follow our business and Made in Croatia pages for more information on Croatian companies, Croatian products, and doing business in Croatia.

Saturday, 1 December 2018

Agrokor's Resilience in Face of Adversity Wins the Day

Agrokor has made a dramatic and unexpected turnaround as bankruptcy and almost total collapse loomed. Having gone from being the most powerful company in the region, to having almost dragged the entire domestic economy to its knees, and then back to proper functioning in just two years, Agrokor's story is a remarkable one, and one of resilience in the face of adversity.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 1st of December, 2018, Fabris Peruško, Agrokor's extraordinary commissioner, speaks about Agrokor's continued strength and resilience over an extremely difficult period of time.

"Out of the whole series of related, significant events [that took place] in 2018, three key issues are still being identified as breaking ones in terms of the future of the Agrokor Group - the creditors' agreement on the settlement, the hearing at which that settlement was voted for, and, finally, the validity of the settlement with the High Court's confirmation. A significant factor for the success of Agrokor's extraordinary administration was the strength of Agrokor's companies to continue to improve their business, especially their efficiency, in a very turbulent environment.

Their good results are the backdrop of the future and a powerful argument against the uncertainty and fear that followed the process. The importance of the fact that one of the largest restructuring processes in the world has been realised in such a short time and so successfully is still not being valued in the right way.

In just two years, the largest private company in Croatia and the region, without incurring upon one lipa at the taxpayers' expense, has emerged from its pre-government regime, has undergone a demanding financial restructuring through the settlement of more than 5,700 creditors, and instead of crushing the entire economy of Croatia and the region, Agrokor functions well to this very day, provides employment, provides revenue to the state budget and in its relations with its business partners, and respects all of the agreed upon deadlines.

The implementation of the settlement - a process which will be operationally executed by the creditors' settlement agreement - is ahead of us - a very complex business transfer to the new group. The start of that implementation is expected at the beginning of next year, and it should be fully concluded during the first half of 2019, and then we'll get a company bearing a new name and a new corporate culture. The creditors agreed that the future group would be based on three main pillars: retail, food, and agriculture.

In each of them [the aforementioned three main pillars] there is room for improvement, especially in terms of efficiency, so the operational restructuring we've started is also directed at that. The focus is on areas where the value lies.

Synergic initiatives within the group have been intensified, key business indicators have been unified and business reporting and business segments have been drawn up. The function of the treasury as well as the function of human resources have been strengthened.

In terms of retail, we're currently working on standardising the process in all components, there is great food export potential in which we have leaders throughout the region, and in some areas of agriculture, we can become European players. Although there are challenges through refinancing the oldest loan and long-term capital structure, Agrokor has perspective, and all the prerequisites to remain one of the largest companies in this part of Europe."

Make sure to follow our dedicated business page for more on Agrokor and much more.

Friday, 30 November 2018

Croatian ICT Company to Take North America After London and Vienna

As Suzana Varosanec/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 29th of November, 2018, Business Intelligence (Poslovna inteligencija), the leading company for the implementation of analytical and strategic ICT consulting in Southeast Europe, is planning to take its business across the Atlantic to the North American continent, most likely to Canada, in a move which would be the next big step for the Croatian ICT company following the opening of their offices in two major European cities, London and Vienna.

The bold plan was confirmed by the president of the management of the aforementioned Croatian ICT company, Dražen Oreščanin, who Poslovni Dnevnik caught up with while he was on an official trip to Canada, where the Croatian-Canadian Economic Forum in Toronto was held. He was heading there as part of visit of numerous Croatian businessmen, which had already been reported by the Croatian Chamber of Commerce (HGK).
What are your estimates of the possible effects of the visit of our economic delegation to Canada?

Every step we made towards developing cooperation is a good step, and can make moves. During this visit, several activities were held - a forum with the Canadian-Croatian Chamber of Commerce, B2B meetings with interested Toronto companies, a meeting with the local community of Croatian emigrants in Toronto, a visit to the Kitchener Technology Centre, Waterloo University, and two hi-tech companies in Toronto. Existing contacts are interesting, and time will show whether or not it will result in some specific work.
What are the impressions on strengthening economic cooperation?

I think there's a mutual interest, the current commodity trade is fairly small, and the numbers grow year after year. The new CETA deal makes it much easier to trade between the European Union and Canada, and the very fact that HGK and the ambassadors of both countries are actively involved in the organisation of such a visit speaks of mutual interest and great potential.
What do the Canadians generally say about the business climate and the benefits of starting a business and investing in our country?

The conversations I mainly led were focused on potential opportunities that we as a Business Intelligence have on the Canadian market, but I didn't  talk to my interlocutors about just those topics. Recently, the Canadian company Constellation took over IN2, one of the largest IT companies in Croatia, so it's obvious that investment interest exists.
What is the potential for further expansion of the company on the Canadian market, as well as cooperation with the companies over there?

I certainly see the potential, I hope that some of the conversations we've had to turn into some concrete opportunities and work. We're certainly planning to open up a company on the North American continent after we open companies in London and Vienna. What I've seen during this visit is truly exceptional and very competitive when compared to other places we're contemplating in the United States. We'll probably make a final decision based on the volume of work we have in a specific part of the US and Canada, and here, the potential for a company like Business Intelligence is definitely big.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business and Made in Croatia pages for more information on this Croatian ICT company, other various companies from up and down the country and their services.


Click here for the original article/interview by Suzana Varosanec for Poslovni Dnevnik

Thursday, 29 November 2018

Largest Croatian Software Company to Build New Campus in Zagreb?

The largest Croatian software company and the very first one to exceed 1000 employees has allegedly begun plans for the construction of the Infobip Campus Zagreb.

As Bernard Ivezic/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 29th of November, 2018, the largest Croatian software company, Infobip, has apparently decided to surpass itself once again and is planning to build an even larger campus than the one that opened its doors last year in Vodnjan in Istria, this time in the Croatian capital.

To briefly recall, at the end of last year, Infobip Campus Pangea was opened by Prime Minister Andrej Plenković, and this facility, boasting 17,000 square metres in total, became the largest IT campus in the whole country.

The photogallery entitled "Infobip Campus Zagreb" with dozens of images of the new facility was published on LinkedIn by the multi award-winning Zagreb studio SODAarhitekti. After publishing, the post quickly received more than 200 likes, and among the ''likers'' was Infobip's chief operating director, Robert Kutić. Discussions about the construction of a campus in Zagreb have been going on for some time, but there had not been any actual confirmation of that fact until now.

Among the rumours circulated the information that Infobip was looking for PR agencies to properly ''follow'' this project for the company. The photographs show that the campus in Zagreb is expected to be larger than the one in Vodnjan, potentially twice as large. According to the currently available information, the new campus will be located in Klara in New Zagreb, in the area of the city where Microsoft, DHL, Styria, Croteam, and other companies are based.

Vedran Jukić, owner of SODAarhitektat, who initially published the photo gallery on LinkedIn, was unavailable for comment. Infobip also refused to comment on it.

Despite that, Poslovni Dnevnik was unofficially informed from close sources to the company that "that they're just pictures, and the published work is unlikely to be selected". Infobip already has a smaller office in the old part of Zagreb, near Trešnjevka, but apparently plans to continue expanding rapidly. In early 2017, it became the first Croatian software company with more than a thousand employees, and by the middle of this year, there were already over 1,300 of them, of which around 500 are based here in Croatia.

The largest Croatian software company already has fifty offices across all continents except the Antarctic, and its services are used by as many as four billion people worldwide.

The company reportedly made more than a quarter of a billion euro at the global level in 2016, with 350 million euro in profit last year. As was confirmed by the co-founder and director of Infobo Silvio Kutić, they grew 30 percent last year. If Infobip continues to grow at this impressive pace, this year the company could reach 455 million euro, or 3.4 billion kuna, in total revenue. Despite these educated guesses and calculated estimates, these figures are impossible to check because the company's official headquarters are located in London, United Kingdom.

Make sure to follow our Made in Croatia and business pages for more info on business in Croatia.


Click here for the original article by Bernard Ivezic for Poslovni Dnevnik

Saturday, 24 November 2018

Major Project Will See Croatian Company Open 100 New Work Positions

One Croatian company which deals primarily with Information Technology has launched a praiseworthy project with the help of European Union funds. The project will see around 100 new work position opened.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 24th of November, 2018, one year ago, the laying of the foundation stones of the business took place. Today, located in the ​​Jalkovec entrepreneurial zone near Varaždin, the new business space belonging to Mobilisis d.o.o., which produces modern, innovative IT infrastructure for industrial process management, as well as mobile collection and data transfer, has been officially opened.

The construction and equipping of the brand new building, which will greatly increase the company's production capacities, has been co-financed by European Union funds, via the means of a tender from the Ministry of Economy, Entrepreneurship and Crafts. Namely, within the framework of the public call for the ''competence and development of small and medium enterprises", the aforementioned company announced its project, entitled "increasing the production capacities of Mobilisis d.o.o. with the building of a new business space and investing in equipment'' amounting to more than 38 million kuna, of which a total of 13.7 million kuna in non-refundable funds was granted.

As the director of the company Krešimir Meštrić pointed out at the opening ceremony, this investment will enable the doubling of sales revenue and also enable further development in line with global trends.

"Today, we're not just opening the building here, but we're opening up more than 100 jobs, at a location which was just a meadow a few years ago. We couldn't have created a better space conversion [than this one]. But with this greenfield investment, the owners of the company have taken a great deal of responsibility upon themselves because this project represents only the physical fulfillment of the conditions. Ahead of us lie the realisation of the plans, but I believe that in this way, we've shown the path and the ambitions that we need to have, which must work to give us confidence and encourage positive trends,'' said Mestrić, emphasising the fact that not only will the company's realised ideas and innovations be created there, but they will also aim to attract business partners from all over the world.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business and Made in Croatia pages for more encouraging Croatian company stories.

Tuesday, 13 November 2018

Agrokor Rescued and Freed from Most Debt, Awaiting New Owners

At the end of October this year, the Agrokor story drew quiet. Namely, the largest insolvency proceeding in the history of trade law in the Republic of Croatia, as well as the largest restructuring process in Croatia, finally came to an end.

As Marina Sunjerga/VL/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 12th of November, 2018, by endorsing the credibility of Agrokor's creditor settlement in late October, the huge process to rescue Agrokor from the pits drew to a close. The rescue of this huge company was an incredibly intense process which has dominated both the economy and the media over the past two years, naturally finding itself among the ''nominees'' for the economic event of 2018.

Over the space of more than eighteen months, agreements between Agrokor's many creditors have been marked by many overtakings, new institutions, political pressure on members of the Government headed by Andrej Plenković, numerous affairs and messy public overthrows. Under the enormous pressure, the company had to manage to somehow continue to do business, which was, in many moments, extremely difficult.

However, thanks to Fabris Peruško, Agrokor's government appointed extraordinary commissioner, and the trust of suppliers in the positive outcome of the whole story, the formerly ailing company has experienced increased profitability and stabilised business.

Most creditors will have to debts of about six billion kuna paid by shares in the ''new'' Agrokor, more specifically the new corporation structure to which Agrokor's assets will be transferred, which will be set up during the next few months of implementing all creditors' arrangements.

Part of the supplier's debt has been billed in cash, and some financial institutions secured part of those claims via refinancing through a roll-up arrangement of up to 1 billion euro. Agrokor, more specifically its sixteen largest companies, posted revenues of 16 billion kuna after the tourist season, with virtually 1.5 billion kuna of operating profit.

Fabris Peruško emphasised that the company was operating better than it was before, and recalled that the deal was agreed with the support of creditors who hold 80 percent of Agrokor's total debts in their hands.

Widespread support for the creditors' deal proposed by the extraordinary administration was the goal that began at a hearing held at the beginning of July this year. To recall, the shares were divided so that the Russian banks Sberbank and VITB held a share of 46.7 percent of Agrokor. The issue of the shareholders' position has still not been resolved, with a settlement reserving 25 percent of the stake in Agrokor, but issues around those assets can only come to trial if they manage to actually prove that their claims that are still being challenged.

Domestic banks received about 12 percent of the company, and the suppliers paid part of the debts with a five percent stake in the new corporate structure. However, thanks to their representatives, Marica Vidaković from Kraš and Marin Pucar from Podravka, they won high-quality positions to continue with their business.

As part of the settlement, there is a guaranteed placement of goods to all of Agrokor's retail chain stores for the next five years, including Konzum, Konzum BIH, Mercator, and Idea. Additionally, if Konzum is operating with operating profits of ess than 40 million over the next four years, it will pay another 75 million euros in cash for the marginal debt.

The implementation of Agrokor's creditor settlement has taken over 100,000 steps, with a workforce of 500 people. It is now necessary to prepare the company for the entry of its new owners, which means that the new corporate structure and new companies will have to transfer over all of their assets, certificates, concessions, labour contracts, brands, and the list goes on,

However, the most demanding business currently in the hands of Agrokor's extraordinary management team is the refinancing of the much-talked-about roll-up loans.

Namely, by the end of December, this one-billion-euro arrangement will come with an eight percent interest rate, but in January, that will jump up to ten percent, and Agrokor will the be required to pay a one-time fee of 75 million kuna to its numerous creditors. By September 2019, that interest would have jumped up to 14 percent. The extraordinary management team hope to refinance the loan by the end of the year.

The various challenges ahead of Agrokor have remain high, since only when the new owners take over the company, set their own people and determine the business strategy, will it be realistically possible to estimate in which way Agrokor's business will affect the domestic economy.

However, regardless of the future of Agrokor, the rescue of the huge company can finally be hailed to have been a successful process which has saved the Croatian economy. With this long and arduous process, a devastating domino effect was avoided, panic was stopped, and the food industry was stabilised.

The fact that most of Agrokor's suppliers recorded a successful business year shows that large companies operating under the Agrokor Group's umbrella have taken the opportunity to consolidate and adapt to new market circumstances. After its long and painful restructuring process, Agrokor remains one of the strongest and most important companies in the domestic economy.

Want to keep up with more news on Agrokor, business and the Croatian economy? Make sure to follow our business page.


Click here for the original article by Marina Sunjerga/VL on Poslovni Dnevnik

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