Sunday, 23 June 2019

Croatian Software Development Company Impresses Western Europe and USA

More Croatian innovation continues to impress not only those in nearby Western Europe but those across the Atlantic in the United States.

As Marta Duic/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 22nd of June, 2019, the Croatian company Agency04 agency is a Zagreb-based software development company that generates more than sixty percent of its revenue on the markets of Western Europe and the USA.

This successful Croatian company was founded five years ago, and today their team consists of seveny experts from Mobile, Web and Java development, user experience-UX, automatic quality control and so-called Agile counselling.

"All of [the company's] founders are people from the world of development, and we believe that this is one of the reasons why the quality of the solutions we deliver is primarily recognised. Our greatest achievements are our colleagues, all of seventy of them. Last year, that year was once again marked by the growth in the number of people in our team and an increase in the number of our clients. We ended [2018] with a 137 percent larger team than we had in 2017, and this year we expect to go down a similar path,'' stated Domagoj Madunić, the director of Agency04

This Croatian company is going from strength to strength, and it is currently focused on the markets of Switzerland, the USA, Austria, and Germany where they work for companies such as Strabag and ELCA, XebiaLabs, and in Croatia, they work for large companies including Iskon and A1. New markets that interest them are other European ones, and they include the British and Scandinavian markets, as well as those of Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg.

"We gave our vision the name five star service, namely, we want to offer customers something that they'll be impressed with process of, as well as with the communication and the quality of the products they're buying from us. Something that sets us apart from all of their previous experiences. Our industry is changing quickly, and that level of service is like a moving target. The growth of our size and portfolio is likely, but only if we stay true to the highest level of service,'' explained Madunić.

Growth is clearly visible when looking at this company's impressive figures, revenues have risen from 6.95 million kuna back in 2017 to a massive 13.5 million kuna last year, with more than double the growth of employees, from 29 in 2017 to 71 who are currently working for this Croatian agency.

"We recently started working on our new website, and we decided on a somewhat brave concept and asked all of our customers for a video statement or a written statement. When we made a contact list, we counted that seventy percent would be willing to give a written statement, and maybe fifty percent would be willing to stand in front of a camera and record a video statement.

Not everyone likes such exposure, and it's not easy to get in front of the camera. We have taken into account that our customers are big companies and that we will have challenges and a long process of approving such statements. We were shocked when we got literally all positive responses, and 100 percent of the people asked about cooperation with us in some way or another. Such a relationship with customers can't be purchased with good sales and marketing, but only with good deliveries,'' said the company's director.

''This year, for the second summer in a row, we'll host a free summer school that will provide students with a theoretical and practical insight into Java application development using the Spring Boot library suite during five weeks. The course will take place online during the week, with personal meetings with lecturers taking place at weekends, and at the end of the school, participants will be able to show off what they learned during their time at our summer school in a two-day hackathon.

We've been looking for young and ambitious people because there's a large gap between academic and practical knowledge in Java programming, and among other things, we want to give young people the opportunity to learn something that will be practical to use.

Along those same lines, it's a great opportunity for us to reach some high-quality employees, last year, thirty attendees participated in this summer school, and from them, we've given permanent employment to four people,'' noted Domagoj Madunić.

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

Wednesday, 19 June 2019

Flight Cancelled or Delayed? Meet Croatia's ClaimDon

June the 19th, 2019 - Travelling is a lot of fun, and often you won’t think about issues that might happen when you’re planning your vacation. One of the most inconvenient things that can happen is definitely when your flight to a destination is cancelled, delayed or you're denied boarding. Meet ClaimDon.

A situation like this directly affects your holiday or business and makes you lose time in a place you did not plan to stay and spend money on expenses like unplanned accommodation, transfers, food, or a new ticket.

To protect passengers, the European Commission (EC) introduced regulation 261/2004. The regulation is set on standard rules on compensation and assistance for passengers in the event of denied boarding, flight cancellations, or the long delays of flights.

This regulation applies to all worldwide airlines when departure takes place within the EU and in the case of flights from outside the EU to a destination within the EU, only to airlines licensed in a Member State of the EU. This relatively unknown regulation is helping passengers to get compensation from airlines in case of delayed, cancelled or denied flights, up to six years back, if a passenger meets all the conditions for the compensation.

Depending on if the flight was cancelled, delayed or boarding denied, there are several rights a passenger can use and get compensation for from the airline. Some of the passenger rights include right to compensation, the right to choose between reimbursement, re-routing, returning, the right to care, which means the passenger should receive meals and drinks proportionate to the length of their, two free telephone calls, telefax or e-mails, and accommodation and transport between their accommodation and an airport if an overnight stay is required.

The compensation depends on the flight length and in the case of a delay, the length of the delay at the final destination, and compensation ranges from 250 to 600 EUR.

Even though the regulation prescribes certain rights to passengers in cases like this, airlines openly contest EU legislation and try to refuse the payment of such compensation, mostly relying on extraordinary circumstances as an excuse. Extraordinary circumstances are caused by events that the airline can’t control and for which they are not at fault.

Since passengers are not familiar with the reasons that qualify as extraordinary circumstances, airlines expand that meaning to avoid paying.

Additionally, the passenger is often unable to get access to proper information and/or has no way to contact the airline. The passenger has the right to send the complaint to a relevant organisation or body for an alternative dispute resolve in the country of origin. This procedure differs from country to country because there isn’t any prescribed deadline to get the feedback on this.

If a passenger doesn’t come to the resolution directly with the airline, the compensation process is prolonged, and most of the individual passengers will avoid the inconveniences of court procedures and the expenses they will have in such cases.

Recent research showed that a mere 35% of passengers only are aware of compensation possibilities, and only 3.6 % know their rights. An estimated number shows there were 16,1 million of passengers, who, in 2017, could ask for refund or compensation.

When we know that in just seven days, there were 1,635 cancelled flights and 48,162 flight delays at the same time, we can see there is quite a number of people who experienced situations like this during their travel plans. In case a passenger is aware of his rights promised by regulation 261/500, he can start the process on own or hire a company to do it for him.

The individual process depends on passenger determinedness and knowledge, on the airline, and on the circumstances of the case. If a passenger chooses to engage a company that will do the process of applying for compensation and getting the airline to reimburse part of the expenses, they first need to submit their case and see which rights they're entitled to.

The first Croatia based company carrying out the service of obtaining compensation from airlines in the event of flight cancellation, delay or denied boarding in accordance with the EU Regulation 261/2004 is ClaimDon – and they have been doing it since 2017.

TCN had a chat with Teodora and Tino from the ClaimDon team, and they told us this idea started after experiencing flight cancellations themselves, and Teodora explained how she went through the whole process of claiming her rights. Afterwards, they researched the market and created an automated system to make the service simple to use.

Additionally, they worked on getting the legal support and attorneys specialised in this field to have them participate in legal action if the airline doesn’t agree on the direct agreement. Teodora said most of the client cases are positively solved if all of the necessary documentation and a basis for compensation are there.

The biggest issue they face is mostly the duration of the process. They are working on obtaining rights to get compensation or the right to be reimbursed for additional expenses when a passenger wants to start the compensation process but doesn’t have the knowledge, will or time to do it on their own.

The automated system estimates the rights and the compensation depending on the individual case. After submitting a claim, the company takes over the process of dealing with the airline. They work on a principle of ''no win no fee'', which means they charge for the service only if they successfully resolve the case and then donate part of the fee to a charity of the passenger's choice.

The first thing they do is to start direct communication with the airline, and in case of no positive outcome, attorneys throughout the EU are contacted, and all of the lawyer's fees are covered. This process can take time, but the outcome should be positive in the end if all of the requirements are met.

Companies like ClaimDon serve as a tool for the passengers. 

Additionally, one of the goals is to inform passengers of their rights and what to do in case of a flight being cancelled, delayed, or boarding denied. If you get to know your rights more, you can know what to do in unfortunate circumstances when your journey doesn’t go as planned.

You can find more about how to apply for compensation on ClaimDon's website or fill in the form here.

For more information on Croatian companies, follow our dedicated business page.

Monday, 17 June 2019

Croatian Company Without Own Office Creates Software for NASA, eBay...

As Novac/Filip Pavic writes on the 16th of June, 2019, Gembox and Testdome, two Croatian sister IT companies, aren't unique just because their software is used by the likes of NASA, Microsoft, Verizon, UEFA and eBay, but also because they're the only Croatian startups who don't even have their own office, and according to them, that's actually intentional.

Both Croatian companies were founded by Željko Švedić, he's the owner and founder of Gembox, and he's the co-owner of Testdome with the director Mario Živić. These two Croatian companies are the pioneers of the new international IT trend, which encompasses so-called remote work, and their employees, who are mostly developers, work from home from around the world, they're scattered all over, from Australia and the USA to India and even Lithuania.

"We've realised that we can employ people from all over the world in this way, and that we're not always having to move into new and bigger offices. Programmers aren't bothered by that, they like tasks that are precise and they can sit comfortably for eight hours at their computers at home without needing people around them to motivate them. However, that's not for everyone, some find that working from home, in fact, means a ''free day'', Švedić said when describing the pros and cons of remote work such as this.

Gembox and Testdome employ a total of seventeen people, and although the stories of the two companies are inextricably linked, they deal with quite different things. It all began back in 2006, says Švedić, a native of Slavonski Brod.

After he resigned from Microsoft Croatia and then went to work for one year over in the US, Švedić returned to Croatia as a 26-year-old with a FER degree in his pocket and a few thousand dollars in savings. He was young and he had two options in front of him. His plans were either to launch something of his own, or get a job employed in some Croatian IT company. However, he decided, like a real developer, to retire to his basement and come up with some solutions that could make him some money. That was the beginning of Gembox's story.

"Back then, I programmed parts of the software, the component for importing and exporting data to Word, Excel, and similar formats. For example, if you go to the UEFA page to view the results of a match and download them in PDF format, it's very likely that our software was used,'' said Švedić, comparing it with the car industry - as there are small companies that produce car parts, such as airbags, and then all manufacturers incorporate it into their cars, just like Gembox produces parts of software that other companies then embed into their applications.

However, as goes the story for almost all Croatian companies, the beginning was extremely difficult, because he had no idea how to sell and properly place his product. He was forced to learn about digital advertising and website optimisation. After the first few years, Gembox managed to get up on its own financially, and then a new problem emerged - the problem of recruiting.

''When I became profitable, the second stage was to hire people, but I didn't know how to do it. The programmers who came to the interviews were quite weak in programming, regardless of their resume and what they were saying about themselves.

I realised then that we needed a better competence testing system. It was the start of the new company, TestDome, with which we created an online test system for job candidates,''

His acquaintance from back in his high school days, Mario Živić from Požega, played a crucial role throughout the whole story.

He got better acquainted with state-run IT competitions and tenders, Both of them, with several years of difference between them, were both national champions, and later they both won Bronze at international and European programming competitions.

Zivić also enrolled at FER, and remained close to the world of such competitions, he designed tasks for high school computer science competitions. Years later, more precisely in 2011, the pair happened to meet randomly, and Švedić then presented his idea to Zivić, which was the aforementioned online system for selecting potential job candidates. Zivić, who for nine years worked for Ericsson Nikola Tesla as a manager, recognised the potential and realised that he could contribute to the whole thing with his own extensive experience.

''Every manager can list several differences between good and bad employees, but they won't know how to test that out. The point is that candidates are best tested by applying knowledge rather than reproducing it,'' said Zivić, who owns 20 percent of this Croatian company, and who also holds the position of company manager.

What sets TestDome apart is the fact that job candidates, and these candidates may be applying for positions in sales, as managers, experts, programmers... are tested on real-world, real life examples of their potential job position, instead of undergoing universal and generic intelligence tests.

With this piece of Croatian innovation, a candidate for a project manager's position, for example, will receive examples of three projects and must be able to calculate the monetary valuation estimate to assess the risk of each project. A developer will get a code line with errors, and in ten minutes, he must find those errors and correct them.

''There's a trend when it comes to professions in engineering, the better the resume, the worse the employee. The ability to write a resume is a marketing capability, so if you're looking for someone to sell something for you, then you're judging a resume, but if you're looking for someone to design a nuclear power plant's software, you'll want someone who is introverted and for whom it's no problem to sit in solitude and write code,'' said Živić.

Additionally, thanks to the Croatian TestDome, the employer doesn't have to go through the initial selection or meet the candidates in their office because everything they need is right there online. 

TestDome and Gembox are yet more amazing examples of Croatian innovation, one of which works to limit time wasted by both potential employer and potential employee, giving way to a quicker and more efficient route of finding the right person for the right job.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business and Made in Croatia pages for much more on Croatian companies, Croatian products and services, Croatian startups, businesses, and investing in Croatia.

Sunday, 9 June 2019

Croatia's Infobip Continues to Impress at EY Entrepreneur of the Year

Croatian companies are becoming all the more successful in spite of the red tape the state often places in their way. Uhljebs (click here) survive like bacteria under a toilet seat within Croatia's many draconian laws which are no friend to the entrepreneur or the investor, much less the Croatian company. The beast, also known as the Croatian bureaucratic machine, is a difficult one to conquer, but while many try and fail, some succeed. The tale of the Croatian company Infobip is one such inspiring success story.

As Novac writes on the 9th of June, 2019, Silvio Kutić is the founder of the wildly successful Croatian technology giant Infobip.

What has Silvio, and thus Infobip, accomplished?

Vodnjan's Infobip was recently declared the best A2P (application-to-person) service in the world. This is the third year that this company has been ranked number one by mobile operators' ratings, but for the first time, Enterprise research was launched, where leading global companies from different industrial sectors rated A2P service providers, and this company from Croatia ranked first.

Why is this so important?

Infobip is so impressive because of its continuity and the confidence it has managed to instill in disillusioned people that have written off their country and the chance of the progression of their professional lives within it, which is a move that has been made by many, this company has proved that top projects and the creation of top-ranking, globally relevant companies can be done here in Croatia. Infobip is not the only one to have set such a shining example, but alongside Rimac Automobili, which has recently announced an expansion of their plant near Sveta Nedelja near Zagreb.

How does Infobip work?

After a series of attempts, Kutić decided to develop technology solutions for business customers, and back in 2006, along with his brother Robert and partner Izabela Jelenić, he founded Infobip, a world-class ICT company with sixty offices across six continents, and successfully competing with all of the competition from within the same field, of which there's no shortage. The company's services were used by a massive 4.7 billion people just last year alone, and their global customers include Uber, Facebook and WhatsApp. The number of employees has long since surpassed the 1,000 mark, are scattered around the world, and Infobip's revenue is measured in millions of dollars.

What will Infobip do in the future?

Infobip is continuing to reinvest what they earn. The money goes back into research and development, the improvement of cloud infrastructure, the strengthening of their centres and the overall quality of the services they provide. Infobip's main intention is to remain on top and develop more technology. The Vodnjan-based campus, which has long since called the "Croatian Google", is a clear sign that they have every intention to do it all from right here in Croatia.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business and Made in Croatia pages for much more.

Saturday, 8 June 2019

Croatian IT Company from Osijek Continues to Grow, Worth 2 Million Kuna

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Lucija Spiljak writes on the 8th of June, 2019, over the years, this Croatian company has invested resources in technology research and the development of new products and functionalities in the domain of business information systems.

The expansion of the Spin company, which deals with IT, in its new office with its new 350-square-metre investment is now worth over two million kuna, bringing the company as many as twenty new jobs.

In the newly adapted attic, there are six offices, a conference room, a kitchen, and even a relaxing area for socialising.

"The goal of upgrading the business space is to provide a pleasant environment that will have a positive influence on the satisfaction and the productivity of our employees, as well as business development," they said from this successful Croatian company.

Osijek's Spin has been operating since as far back as 1990, employing 62 permanent employees, and investing heavily in intensive internal and external education. They are growing steadily and at the very beginning of the business, this Croatian company experienced growth of 15-20 percent per year, while in the last five years, they've grown by seven percent.

In the year 2018, they managed to make a massive 17.5 million kuna, as they say from the company, and the company's newly created value stood at more than 14 million kuna. "We're pleased with the growth and development of our business, especially the stability and the structure of revenue, with more than 80 percent of our revenue being from our own products and services, and we're entering this year with growth as well, and we expect 2019's growth to be 3-5 percent better than that of last year,'' said Ivan Matejašić, Spin's director.

This Croatian company is primarily concerned with the development and implementation of business information systems and the maintenance of the long-term vitality of their system's information systems. That's where Jupiter Software - an integral system and a leading solution in the field of agriculture, food and chemical industry, trade and a wide range of service activities, comes in. Jupiter Software provides a unique interface and an information space for managing all of the business processes within the company.

This system is used by more than 300 companies within Croatia's region, of which 45 are on the list of the TOP 500 Croatian companies. As for this Osijek-based company, Poslovni Dnevnik asked Spin'd director to assess the current situation in Slavonia, as this region is most often mentioned as an example and result of Croatia's burning problems of labour shortages and the departure of the workforce.

In Slavonia, they say they're struggling with a lack of quality staff and various economic circumstances such as the burdensome Croatian tax system and the state of public administration, but the entrepreneur added that he is adjusting, adapting, and invests his energy in good planning and proper organisation.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business page for much more on Croatian companies, Croatian products and services, and doing business in Croatia.

Saturday, 8 June 2019

Croatian Companies More and More Prevalent on Russian Market

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Sergej Novosel Vuckovic writes on the 6th of June, 2019, the economic cooperation between the Republic of Croatia and Russia is growing, with more Croatian companies appearing on the Russian market, and with that, more and more Russian tourists are coming to Croatia.

It's easily seen that there has been significant growth in terms of Croatia's economic cooperation with Russia, and there are now more and more Russian tourists visiting the country, and according to the experience of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce's (HGK) Moscow office, more and more Croatian companies and entrepreneurs are looking for opportunities on the large Russian market, at least according to HGK's Luka Burilović who made the statement from St. Petersburg, where the Croatian Chamber of Commerce's delegation led by Economy Minister Darko Horvat participated in the International Economic Forum SPIEF recently.

The gathering is considered as one of the world's largest business meeting venues for business interests in Russia and on developing markets.

In the name of HGK, Burilović held a meeting with Russia's Sergej Čerjomin, on further possible economic cooperation and the organisation of the forums of Croatian and Moscow companies on July the 1st.

The worth of trade in goods between Croatia and Russia currently stands at about three billion dollars, but the goal is to reach and eventually surpass the former 3.4 billion dollar amount. Some Croatian companies are major exporters to Russia, such as AD Plastik and Belupo, which have both been recently awarded as the best Croatian exporters to the Russian Federation last year.

The fact that the Petersburg forum was the place to be for all things business was highlighted by the fact that its guest was the president of China, Xi Jinping.

Detailed discussions were held about trends in international economics, human development, environment and trade, technological achievements and much more between 5,000 representatives of both political and business circles, scientists, the public and media from all over the world.

Follow our dedicated business page for much more on Croatian companies, Croatian products and services, and the Croatian business and investment world.

Friday, 31 May 2019

Croatia's Infobip Proclaimed World's Best A2P Service Provider in London

Paddling through a muddy array of depressing stories about companies operating (or not, as the case usually is) in Croatia, Infobip continues to attract nothing but positive headlines and encouraging articles from across the board. This Croatian IT company appears to be going from strength to strength and this has been confirmed once again in the British capital.

As Darko Bicak/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 30th of May, 2019, this Croatian IT company has been proclaimed the best owing to the votes of 350 global telecom companies and 265 other companies. The Croatian IT company Infobip, which employs 1,600 people not only in Croatia but globally, was proclaimed the best A2P (application-to-person) service provider in the whole world.

As announced by the company at the ROCCO Awards (Roaming Consulting Company), which took place on Wednesday in London, UK, and according to 350 telecom operators worldwide and 265 leading global companies in the annual ROCCO report, Infobip was voted the absolute best in this category.

This is the third year in a row that Infobip has been ranked first place according to the ratings of mobile operators, but for the first time research was conducted in the ''Enterprise'' category, where the leading global companies from different industrial sectors evaluated A2P service providers, and Croatia's highly successful Infobip was positioned in very first place.

As of 2012, ROCCO has been conducting independent market tests for mobile service providers, network equipment, connectivity, business models and service quality. Precisely because of the unique methodology that ensures transparency and the relevance of data, ROCCO's reports are considered to be among the most important top service providers on the global telecommunications scene.

Silvio Kutić of Infobip, said that their major competitors are large companies based in the Silicon Valley, USA, but that doesn't discourage them remotely from doing great things.

"Infobip is linked to more than 600 operators around the globe, which provides us with a high level of quality of service that we provide to our customers globally. We're going to continue our business with the focus on new technical solutions," stated Kutić.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business page for more information on Croatian companies, Croatian products and services, doing business and investing in Croatia and much more.


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

Monday, 27 May 2019

Croatian Brothers Create Biodegradable Tennis Shoes

As Novac/Mario Pusic writes on the 26th of May, 2019, the story of two Croatian brothers Domagoj (34) and Hrvoje (33) Boljar from Duga Resa is an excellent one for many reasons, and one of them is that they don't need a laptop, a tablet, or a mobile phone for the presentation of their products. They wear them - on their feet.

Through their company Miret, they developed an eco-tennis brand that is almost completely biodegradable and was started with the EIT Climate-KIC accelerator, the largest European launcher acceleration program that develops solutions which have a positive impact on the climate. These new Croatian tennis shoes are one of the six innovative Croatian projects which will be developed under the leadership of the Zagreb Innovation Center (ZICER) in this program.

The Boljar brothers can thus expect symbolic financial support of 15,000 euros, mentoring and educational support from recognised Croatian and foreign experts, as well as a good opportunity for international networking.

It's no exaggeration when Domagoj and Hrvoje say that they're creating the most fashionable shoes on the planet. They are made of hemp, cotton and various other healthy materials.

Everyone who knew their late father, Josip Joža Boljar, knows of the source from which these two innovative Croatian brothers draw their passion, and the stubbornness of their father is not lacking, either, they say themselves.

In the second half of the nineties, when the textile, leather and footwear industry came together seamlessly, Joža decided to produce shoes. This decision was the right one and worked out fine, and ten years later, under his brand Mr. Joseph, he had a plant with 100 employees who produced 100,000 pairs of shoes per year, sold them in 22 stores all over Croatia and exported them all the way to Scandinavia. As excellent as this story is, sometimes things are happen in life that nobody can influence; the market was flooded with cheap Chinese products, there was a crisis, and long-established entrepreneur Josip Boljar entured a hard time and eventually died in 2015. These two brothers grew up with their father's factory, so there was no way they were going to leave it even during the worst of times.

"There was no family pressure for us to take over one day. And before we graduated from university, with me doing economy of entrepreneurship, and Hrvoje doing industrial design, I knew I would one day run the company and my brother would create new products. We inherited that from our parents, so there's this need to create something new, something useful and tangible.

My father was an electrical engineer who went into making shoes after having made machines. Working in his company wasn't something that was ''pre-programmed'' for us, but we both ended up there. However, the company's stability was sluggish, we were trying to save it by turning to the production of luxury tennis shoes, which was, back then, not something on the Croatian market or abroad.

We've created our own brand, Jots, we developed products for top European brands for buyers Croatia, Italy, Holland and France, all with the knowledge and the machines we had and the great people who kept following us. But then it just happened to take off,'' the Croatian brothers state.

You don't surrender in life when things get hard, but only when something makes no sense anymore. And these two brothers think that their eco-tennis shoes do make a lot of sense, and it's never really been easy for them anyway.

Behind the proverbial storm which pushed their core business ever forward, five years ago, they began to develop their eco-tennis shoes, and they knew they were doing the right thing.

The first 100 pairs were quickly grabbed by tourists in Split without any advertising as long as four years ago, and they continued to develop and offer their products through their webshop at

"I'm just persistent, Hrvoje is crazy and persistent. He had dreamed about this shoe before he even had the opportunity to get the materials he needed. They'd say we're producing garbage and that they don't want to participate in it. But we had to live on something. I stepped forward and fought with the problems and let him go and develop things in peace. He went to the extreme, wanted to make a shoe for which there's no mold.''

Nobody had ever done so, so this inventive Croatian duo couldn't even get their hands on any materials to make ecological footwear. Someone had to prepare it especially for them. They have a dozen major suppliers who helped them out, but not one of them is from Croatia.

''People were asking us whether or not the shoes will just fall to bits on their feet. Yes, the composition of the material is like that of a shepherd's pie, but no, they won't fall apart. We use certified suppliers, for example, a New Zealand wool processed in eco-colours with the most rigorous ecological certifications.''

Much later on, the EIT Climate-KIC competition was announced by their acquaintance Marko Capek, probably the most prominent and most controversial Croatian anti-plastic fighter, who worked in the UN after completing his energy studies during which he studied renewable energy sources.

"Our innovation is in the concept, ideas and materials and we no longer think about manufacturing, even though we've dreamed of that, but we'll use service production, what we used to do for others. We have great producers in Croatia and we hope that production will continue to take place in Croatia. What we need is stability,'' they state, adding that they do need a serious investor, and that they don't want for their project to simply remain a small and somewhat ''romantic'' one.

They will look for such an investor abroad, but they aren't even thinking of leaving Croatia, because, as they rightly say, no honey and milk is flowing through the rivers anywhere.

"A colleague told me after presenting the product to go to Sweden. If anyone knows how hard it is to work in Croatia, then I know, but I won't move because I like living here. Will we open an office in Berlin or America? I don't know, but we want to stay here. You're lying in bed tonight and you wonder how you'll pay for your electricity tomorrow and you think it would be best to move to New Zealand. You wake up in the morning and keep making shoes. Wherever you go, you are still here, wherever you go, nothing will change if you don't change it,'' concluded Domagoj Boljar.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business and Made in Croatia pages for more on Croatian products and services, Croatian companies, Croatian businesses and Croatian innovation, and much more.


Click here for the original/full article by Mario Pusic for Novac/Jutarnji

Saturday, 25 May 2019

American Ambassador and Students Visit Successful Croatian Company

As Novac writes on the 25th of May, 2019, the headquarters of the Zagreb-based Q IT company were visited by US Ambassador W. Robert Kohorst, where the representatives of the Croatian company Q and the US Ambassador discussed their US business operations, projects and further plans.

Ambassador Kohorst, who comes from the business world, was particularly interested in Croatian Q's business strategy on the American market and what challenges they encountered. The conversation was also conducted in the spirit of bilateral relations between the United States of America and Croatia, with the aim that the US embassy could further assist Croatian companies with their operations in the United States, but also American investors here in Croatia.

''We're glad that we had the opportunity to host US Ambassador Kohorst and to Q and the projects we've worked for the US market to him. The exchange of knowledge and experience is crucial because those who can influence laws must first hear what's going on out in the field. That's why we were delighted to be able to share our experience with the ambassador,'' stated Filip Ljubic, CEO of Q.

In addition to the American Ambassador, Q was visited by three groups of American students from the Quinnipiac, Michigan and Redlands universities this year. For a total of 110 students who visited, the story of Q's success was their main interest, since Q grew by a staggering 4,000 percent in the last four years alone, and several of them expressed their personal desires to work in this Croatian company.

Across the Atlantic over in the United States, this Croatian company operates through its Los Angeles and New York offices, and they have so far successfully completed projects for leading American companies such as Coca-Cola, Facebook, Walmart, and the United States Postal Services.

In addition, last year in the United States, they were rewarded for the excellence of their brand, receiving the REBRAND 100® award alongside the likes of American HP and Cadillac.

Make sure to follow our dedicated Made in Croatia and business pages for much more.

Friday, 17 May 2019

Croatia's Mlinar Closes Bakery in Munich, Owners Explain Why

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 17th of May, 2019, as things currently stand, Croatia's beloved and highly popular Mlinar bakery chain boasts bakeries in seven European countries apart from the Republic of Croatia: in neighbouring Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Hungary, as well as a little further afield in Slovakia, Germany, Switzerland, and Malta.

The news that Mlinar had closed its bakery in the bustling German city of Munich came as a surprise to many. The Yelp page, which offers customers and would-be customers open and transparent reviews of everything from hotels and restaurants to shops, states the Mlinar bakery at Marienplatz, Munich, is closed, according to a report from 24sata.

Over the last year or so, Croatia's much loved Mlinar bakery has been continuing to expand rapidly and has opened multiple outlets outside of Croatia, some in Europe and some much, much further afield.

Back at the tail end of 2012 is when Mlinar first began to spread its wings. First they entered the neighbouring Slovenian market, and the opening of a bakery in Germany was definitely a special moment for the company which has long been a household name here in Croatia.

The biggest achievement for Mlinar's operations over in Germany took place back in 2015 when a bakery was opened on Munich's Marienplatz, in the very centre of this popular and busy German city. The then majority owner, Mato Škojo, proudly announced the further expansion of the company on both the European and global markets.

The closure of this particular bakery came to light after it was announced that the Mid Europe Investment Fund, which is headquartered in London, United Kingdom, took over the majority stake in Mlinar, the largest Croatian bakery company, while its former owner Mato Škojo retained a mere minority stake.

From Mlinar itself, they state that the Munich bakery was closed due to the inability to continue to cooperate with the owner of the premises at which it was located, before London's "Mid Europe" Investment Fund became the majority owner of Mlinar. They stress how these situations do happen from time to time and that the company is in constant search for adequate spaces, adding that it is continuing with its expansion plans.

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