Saturday, 27 April 2019

Slavonian Store Encourages Purchase of Local Produce and More

This Slavonian store is a unique selling point where the shelves feature a rich assortment of local produce from local Slavonian OPGs, handmade souvenirs, and traditional ethno clothing items.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 26th of April, 2019, in the first year, sales surpassed expectations, and products from the new Slavonian store's shelves are finding their way around the world, from Uruguay all the way to Australia, Sanja Rapaić writes for Agroklub.

In Nova Gradiška, a town historically referred to as the youngest Croatian town, the totally unique ''Slavonian store'' was created last year. Located in a building with almost fairy-tale interiors dating from the 1920s, this small Slavonian shop boasts a varied and rich offer. The shop is unique, with a special atmosphere that combines the past and Slavonian traditions with contemporary methods of manufacturing for its numerous local producers.

Located close to the premises of the Tourist Board of the city in which it is situated, the Slavonian shop primarily attracts tourists, travellers and numerous Slavonians working abroad and who are coming on holiday to their native Slavonia. Thanks to them, products from local OPGs, cheeses, and cured meat products, as well as honey, fruit spreads and pastes, souvenirs, clothes and items decorated with ethno motifs and even expensive gold jewellery, have already travelled to almost all countries of the world, from Uruguay all the way to the other side of the world, to Australia.

"It all started two years ago, when the city of Nova Gradiška and six surrounding municipalities - Cernik, Rešetari, Staro Petrovo Selo, Nova Kapela, Davor and Okučani - founded the Nova Gradiška area community of producers. That was the basis of everything, with huge support from Nova Gradiška, in March of last year, we realised another idea of ​​a sales point through which all interested manufacturers could place their products.

As soon as we opened the Slavonian store, the shelves of which were immediately filled with products from all four Slavonian counties and from part of Sisak-Moslavina County. We started out with about twenty manufacturers and in just a year, their number doubled and today the Slavonian store has launched a range of products coming from as many as 55 subcontractors, of which about 30 percent are made up of OPGs, and the rest are from obrts (small companies) and from domestic labour,'' said Milan Rosić of the Slavonian store.

He pointed out that the opening of the Slavonian store has unexpectedly triggered another positive chain reaction. Namely, just so that they could put their products on store shelves, many Slavonian locals decided to open up their own OPGs.

"We're especially proud of the fact that many people who have good ideas and good products have been motivated to open OPGs, obrts or engage in home-based work, and make a serious effort towards doing this work. In the first year of operation, the Slavonian store was responsible for the opening of a dozen brand new OPGs, and partly because of this, our offer is richer and more luxurious every month. The sales are going more than well. Our customers are mainly foreign tourists, Brits, Italians, French and Japanese, of which there are, as much as it might seem unrealistic to some, more and more,'' he says.

While foreigners are mostly looking for souvenirs from this area, as well as traditional clothing, ethno-style jewellery creations, our people who work abroad and domestic tourists are primarily buying Slavonian delicacies - cured meats, various cheeses, alcoholic drinks, liqueurs, fruit juices, honey and honey products, and a variety of homemade pastes and homemade cakes which have been made according to old traditional recipes,'' says the shop manager, who is more than pleased with how the Slavonian store's sales are going.

The whole system works very easily, it's enough to contact the producer's community or come directly to the Slavonian store, where you can sign an agreement with the manager and arrange all details regarding the sale of your products.

"We're working on sales commissions, we negotiate quantities, we display products at our store, and at the end of each month we send a detailed sales data report to all of our producers, send them invoices and then make payments to their accounts for all the products we've sold here that month, so far, everything's been working flawlessly and everyone's satisfied, the manufacturers, the buyers, and us,'' stated Milan Rosić.

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

Wednesday, 24 April 2019

Croatia's ''Include'' Attracting Investment and Attention

When it comes to results, Croatia's Include published an impressive 115 percent growth in revenue in the first quarter of the year, and an average selling price growth of almost 40 percent.

As Tomislav Pili/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 23rd of April, 2019, one of the main stars of the Croatian startup scene, entrepreneur Ivan Mrvoš, is continuing to impress. Just two years after Include's first capitalisation through Funderbeam, recapitalisation is about to happen again, aiming this time at almost ten times the amount. Before today's public announcement of the campaign, Include's main man revealed that his company, which is a top Croatian manufacturer of solar powered benches, is collecting part of the finances through Funderbeam while the other part will be provided by private investors.

"After the successful first round of investment back in 2017, when we raised about 3.5 million kuna with a 30 million kuna valuation, we decided to enter a new round of recapitalisation. We didn't set a fixed amount, but we expect that the investment will be at least 20 million kuna, with the potential to reach approximately 30 million kuna. As for Funderbeam's part of the investment, we're expecting to raise about 10 million kuna through the platform,'' said Include's boss Ivan Mrvoš. At the moment, he has secured about 10 million kuna from the Funderbeam platform and is actively discussing the additional funds with several potential investors, including private individuals and venture capital funds.

"Right now, I can't say which investors are involved, but they're people who have led or are currently leading various Croatian industries, which we consider to be a significant indicator," he pointed out. When asked how much shares in Include now sell for and how much the company is valued at, Include's founder explained that things are a bit different now than they were back in 2017.

"The company has four years of business behind it and some remarkable results have come to fruition, so we decided to hire one of the companies from ''The Big Four'' to do a valuation. What I can say is that it was a very intensive process that lasted for several months, and the company was estimated at 110 million kuna last week,'' says Mrvoš.

"The company ended last year with a positive result, and we also continued things successfully during the first quarter of this year, with 60,000 kuna of net profit," Mrvoš revealed.

The collected money will certainly go into the development of existing markets, but also to conquering new markets.

"We intend to strengthen our presence on existing markets and continue to build a global distribution network. In addition, we're beginning with the development of new products that will be complementary for the existing markets, and intended for those same markets, and we'll also get some more advanced equipment for our development and production activities,'' explained the talented young entrepreneur.

The trading of Include's tokens at Funderbeam was stopped on April the 1st this year due to campaign preparation, and the latest market price is 3.5 euros. The director of Funderbeam Damir Bićanić explained that the price of the shares will not be one euro as they usually are in Funderbeam's campaigns, but higher, meaning more specifically that they'll reflect the company's new valuation.

The leading investor, as was the case in 2017, will be Ivana Šoljan who says that Include will certainly pass at least one recapitalisation, and "hopefully maybe go to the stock market in the future.''

"Mr Ivan Mrvoš and his whole team have advanced tremendously. Organisationally, they did well, they wrote regular reports to investors, they're not late with deliveries, they plan things smartly - they're ready for a new round,'' concluded Šoljan.

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

 

Click here for the original article by Tomislav Pili for Poslovni Dnevnik

Wednesday, 17 April 2019

Croatia's Hangar18 Opens First Store in Dublin, Ireland

As Bernard Ivezic/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 16th of April, 2019, in the very first NOA store in Dublin, Ireland, this company from Koprivnica, Croatia, sells mobile phones, televisions and mobile phone accessories all under their own brand.

Croatia's successful Hangar18 company from Koprivnica, which has developed its very own brand of mobile phones, NOA, which has a market share in the domestic field immediately behind giants like Samsung and Apple, has opened its first own NOA store.

The first brand store the company has opened is in the Irish city of Dublin, and this Croatian technology company has stated that it plans a further fifteen such stores in Ireland alone. Additionally, over the next three years, Hangar18 plans to open a total of one hundred of its own NOA stores across Western Europe.

Mario Pintar, Marketing Manager at Hangar18, says this enviably successful Croatian company has changed their approach to developing its sales network. In Eastern markets, with the exception of Croatia, and where they have been operating so far, the company does business via distributors, while in the west, he wants to be in direct contact with the company's customers.

"Customers in Eastern Europe buy mobile phones of up to 150 euros, while in the west, due to the better purchasing power, they're buying more expensive devices, and we see a greater room for growth," explained Pintar. He added that the company's expansion initially started a year ago, and intensive work has been going on on for the past six months.

He didn't want to comment on just how much the company invested, nor did he want offer any comment on much they plan to invest in further expansion. According to data from Business Croatia, Hangar18 saw growth from 242 to 137 million kuna from 2013 to 2017, its exports jumped to an impressive 66.7 million kuna, and its net profit rose from 1.3 to 4.8 million kuna. Mario Pintar says that they already have a warehouse over in Ireland and that they're hiring the first workers for it. He says that on average, the company will require three to four employees per store, and potentially even more for sales and management.

"Our colleague Tihana Magdić has been living in Dublin for a long time, so that's why we started with Ireland. She was promoted to country manager, she's well acquainted with the market, and the shopping centre we first entered was a great partner and it was very easy to arrange everything with them,'' Pintar said.

Pintar explained that in the west, Croatia's Hangar18 will compete in the B category of brands, but as the first choice of those who instead of A brands want the Best Buy mobile.

"What sets us apart is the fact that we give customers the functionality of A brand at a fair price, and then the Noa Premium Care warranty covers the first twelve months for damages such as screen breakages and water damage, and our ''after sales support,'' and we open our authorised NOA service in every country we enter,'' explained Pintar.

He added that after Ireland, Croatia's Hangar18 plans to open stores in other European countries, including the United Kingdom, Germany, France and Spain. However, he noted the fact that they hadn't forgotten about the eastern markets. For example, in Croatia alone, there are fifteen retail outlets where they sell various brands of ICT equipment. "Recently, we've been able to directly export to Russia as a third company from Croatia, which opens opportunities for us in both Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan,'' concluded Hangar18's Pintar.

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

 

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

Tuesday, 16 April 2019

Croatia's AD Plastik Contracts Job Worth 48.6 Million Euro for EU Market

While bleak and uninspiring stories about the state of the Croatian economy and doing business in Croatia continue to circulate across news and media portals as well as in newspapers, not everything is so bleak, you just need to look a little harder. Croatia's AD Plastik has contracted brand new jobs for the European Union market worth a massive 46.8 million euros.

As SEEbiz writes on the 16th of April, 2019, Croatia's AD Plastik d.d. has contracted the new jobs for the European Union for the PSA and FCA Group.

The job of the production of speaker carriers for the Citroen Picasso and C-Elysee PSA Group cars was contracted, which is worth 1.7 million euros, with the start of production scheduled for 2020 with a projected eight-year duration. With the very same buyer, the production of side panels for the Citroen C3 in the value of an additional three million euros, with the start of production planned in 2020, is also in the works, with a projected duration of four years.

New operations for the production of guardrails/handrails for several PSA Group vehicles (Peugeot 208, Peugeot 2008, Citroen DS3 Crossback and Opel Corsa) have been agreed with a total value of 20 million euros attached to them, with a projected ten-year duration, and the works begining during 2019. The Opel Adam Crossback is yet another vehicle from the aforementioned group, for which the engine manufacturing, costing 1.4 million euros, has been contracted with Croatia's AD Plastik, with the anticipated start of serial production being next year, and the duration of the project standing at seven years.

Croatia's AD Plastik d.d. also arranged and contracted 20.7 million euros' worth of new jobs for the FCA Group for the Jeep Compass and Fiat 500e cars. For the Fiat 500e, interior components and air intakes will be produced at AD Plastik's factories, and the total value of the project is 13.9 million euros. The project duration is projected at eight years and serial production is planned for 2020.

For the Jeep Compass, handgrip production contracted at 6.8 million euros has been agreed and the start of serial production is planned for next year with an estimated four year project duration.

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

Monday, 15 April 2019

Croatia's Nocturiglow Begins Creating ''Low Tech'' Products for Elderly

As Bernard Ivezic/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 14th of April, 2019, Croatia's Nocturiglow is currently the biggest startup ''surprise'' in the Republic of Croatia. The story of this startup, which won best pitch at the first Investors Conference @ Algebra Lab, has accelerated beyond all possible expectations.

The Nocturiglow team has developed a low-tech care product for the elderly and infirm which has the same name as the company itself, for those who struggle to get up to go to the bathroom to urinate, or for those who simply cannot for whatever reason. The only, conditionally speaking that is, "technological" thing that Nocturiglow's ''bowl'' possesses is that it has fluorescent elements which make it glow in the dark, which is why it's easy to locate and use during the night. There is a female and a male version.

Nocturiglow's Ivan Babić politely declined to show an image of the design of Nocturiglow's new product, because he is currently in the process of having this intellectual property protected for sale on the EU market.

"We're completely low tech. That was our whole goal, because our competition doesn't focus on quality and user experience, and that's why we think we have room for success," Babić says. He added that Nocturiglow will develop other care products aimed at the older generation in the future, and they will also incorporate sensors, which of course means adding more technology.

Like most millenials today, unsatisfied with the potential income and opportunities that he could accomplish with a master's degree in logistics and management here in Croatia, he was looking for a stroke of luck which would take him down a different path, and so he left Croatia. For three years, he worked as a carer for people with disabilities over in Germany, a job which helped him arrive to this idea in the first place.

"When the STEP-RI startup incubator issued a tender, I applied, I resigned from my job in Germany and came back to Croatia to develop my own business," Babić says. In the past six months, he has made a prototype on his computer with his partner Sara Gunjača and his designer, Ivo Blažinčić.

Now he is preparing to create the very first functional prototype. His plan is to make fifty copies to be shared by test users. Previously, this type of thing was tested through surveys among employees of private and public healthcare institutions.

"We have also noticed that our product is not only good for patients but also for healthcare institutions, because it facilitates jobs for caregivers, as well as insurance companies," added Babić.

He noted that he wants to start selling Nocturiglow's brand new product through his own web store by the beginning of 2020, while the ''attacking'' the EU market through Amazon. He also wants to develop sales to various  healthcare institutions. He has even been in talks with an American company, a partner of Kickstarter, about production. Currently, however, investors haven't come knocking at his door, yet.

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

 

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

Friday, 12 April 2019

Pag Salt Gains EU Protection - Croatia Now Has 22 Protected Products

As Morski writes on the 11th of April, 2019, Pag salt (Paška sol) has received protection at the EU level. This information has now been published officially and Pag salt has been entered into the register of Protected Geographical Indications (EU PGI), and Pag salt has earned its sought-after protection status throughout the European Union.

"Pag salt'' is sea salt obtained directly from the seawater of Pag bay, its shape that of small cubic crystal structures that are white in colour and contain minerals and trace elements. Most of the crystals are up to 1 mm in size, so 98 percent of all of the salt crystals manage to pass through a sieve with a mesh size of 1.3 mm. It has a concentrated salty taste without any bitterness.

The seawater from the bay of Pag is extremely clean and well-filtered because the bottom of Pag bay, from which it is obtained, is highly rich in shells which act as natural purifiers of the sea, meaning the seawater in that area has very low values ​​of heavy metals, which are at considerably lower levels than the average value of rest of the Mediterranean sea. In addition to that, Pag bay is located far from any areas in which industrial works are carried out, meaning that the sea is even more pure.

Croatia boasts a long and very rich tradition of production and preparation of various agricultural and food products that are characterised by certain special, unique qualities and traditional production methods, and now finally Pag's much loved salt has earned its protection at the highest level.

Although the Republic of Croatia is still the youngest member state of the European Union, it can be extremely proud of itself as it now has 22 different agricultural and food products with names that are now protected at the European Union level, either in the sense of having a protected destination of origin, or having a protected geographical indication. The EU currently has three such schemes which work to protect the names of quality agricultural products and foodstuffs.

Make sure to follow our dedicated lifestyle page for much more.

Sunday, 7 April 2019

Croatian Success Stories: Family Business Dream Becomes Reality

Can one succeed in doing business on Croatian territory? Yes, one certainly can.

Asteria, a Croatian family company started by Dubravka and Veronika Vuković in the village of Banova Jaruga near Sisak in the continental part of the country, marked its first anniversary of being in business at the end of February 2019.

As Marta Duic/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 6th of April, 2019, this mother and daughter team successfully run their business which involves producing sleepwear, and the combination of Dubravka's long-standing experience in the textile industry and Veronika's knowledge gained about entrepreneurship at the Faculty of Economics in Osijek proved to be a winning combination.

"The two of us have always managed to create something together, and last year we had the chance to share that with the world. Our desire is to offer women quality sleepwear, ours is a different look than what is currently on our market, and that's why we decided to go with sleepwear. We want women to feel comfortable but at the same time feel elegant and confident in our clothes,'' explained Veronika Vuković.

Some of the Asteria branded underwear products include classic pyjamas, nightgowns, nightgowns, combos, dresses, kimonos and bathrobes, and fashion accessories such as sleeping masks and cosmetics bags.

"After the initial calculations, we started with the creative part and started working on the first models, there were a lot of attempts, a bunch of models from different fabrics, we played around with it all and tried out what would be the best, and we also asked our acquaintances to see what they liked the best, and soon after, we decided to take advantage of the self-employment incentives and open up an obrt (a type of company). At first, we needed some time because we knew only some of the very basics and not much more, and the biggest challenge were the Croatian state institutions and the vague information we received. We now understand the way they work and it's easier for us to talk to them,'' stated Vuković, reminiscing on Asteria's very beginnings.

The fabrics are mostly purchased from Italy and Germany and from some Croatian companies, and they're both [both domestic and foreign companies] responsible for the designs.

''Our products have been on the market for nine months now, and the web shop has been open for seven months. Special attention is paid to the design of the clothes and the selection of the fabric used in production, and each piece is manually sewn. I can say that we're getting better and better at it. When we started, no one knew about us and yet everything went easily.

Today, customers are already familiar with us and know where to look for our products, and on our web shop every month we have more orders than we had during the previous month. Customers often come back with some positive feedback, and we're particularly happy when they send us a picture of how they wear their clothes and how the clothes look on them,'' said Veronika Vuković, who prepares and delivers the items within four working days. In addition to Asteria's web shop and social networks, their products can also be viewed and purchased at their workshop in Banova Jaruga. Vuković noted that they aren't planning to open a classical type of store, at least for now.

"The type of clothes we make are made by almost nobody in the whole of Croatia. Although there are several Croatian companies that do sell sleepwear, it isn't similar to ours and is primarily different when it comes to the type of fabric being used.

Although these companies and foreign companies selling sleepwear are our competition, we're constantly working on being different to them and to make ourselves known for the variety and the quality of our products. As our greatest achievement, I would point out that customers have begun to recognise our products and recommend us to their acquaintances,'' said Vuković, noting that their current greatest efforts are investing in their proper positioning on the market as high quality garment manufacturers, as well as the expansion of their assortments and the entering into new markets.

"We're still not going to give too much away, but what I will say is that we're preparing stylish dresses, blouses and skirts in daytime, business and evening combinations, everything that a woman needs, and we want to focus more on sales in the EU and in the rest of the world in the future. They're much larger markets than our Croatian market here, and we believe our products have great potential,'' Vuković concluded.

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

 

Click here for the original article by Marta Duic for Poslovni Dnevnik

Saturday, 6 April 2019

Snapchat Integrates Croatia's Photomath for Solving Mathematical Problems

As Mia Biberovic/Netokracija writes on the 5th of April, 2019, Snapchat's camera is set to become even smarter, as was stated yesterday at the Snap Partner Summit. Namely, an expanded reality platform was presented for developers under the name of Scan, and among the first partners is Croatia's very own Photomath, which will now enable Snapchat users to easily solve mathematical tasks.

For a while now it has been able to be seen that Snap has been heading in the direction of expanded reality more strongly. This was yet more visible when the wildly popular app introduced real-world scanning, recognition abilities, and the possibility to purchase through Amazon, directly via the app. In addition, Snapchat's camera enabled song recognition through Shazam, and new, more interesting camera applications were presented yesterday, this means that Giphy will be able to recognise real-world objects and include a convenient GIF to match, and Photomath will recognise maths problems and offer users a solution.

Croatia's Photomath application has already risen to extreme levels of popularity. Back in November, Netokracija exclusively wrote about the Croatian app's impressive 100 million downloads. In addition, founder Damir Sabol then announced that they received a six million dollar investment. This partnership with Snapchat, which, when announced at Snap's event for partners, received a special applause, and will surely help make these already impressive figures even higher.

As Damir Sabol, the founder and CEO of Photomath told Netokracija, this collaboration is well positioned for targeted users because Snapchat and Photomath have very customised user bases and naturally coincide.

Sabol: The basic features of Photomath will be available through Scan.

Among other things, Sabol revealed that only one part of the application's functionality will be integrated into Snapchat's Scan:

Only the basic features will be available on Snapchat - specifically, getting solutions for whatever is being scanned. For all of the other features, and mostly for step-by-step explanation, Photomath is there. Thus, Photomath's founder believes that such a cooperation will open the way for new users because Photomath isn't intended for offering only the ultimate solutions to mathematical tasks, but a higher educational value through the solving process, and this can only be achieved through the Photomath application itself.

When it comes to the number of users, Snapchat is still lagging behind Instagram, but CEO Evan Spiegel revealed, as TechCrunch writes, in the US, Snapchat reaches nearly 75 percent of all people between 13 and 34 years of age.

We reach 90 percent of people between the ages of 13 and 24, in essence, we reach more people of that age than Facebook and Instagram in the United States, the UK, France, Canada and Australia does.

This also proves Sabol's assertion that the target group matches them. However, on the sidelines, what Snapchat's greatest asset is the will of the user to explore the world of expanded reality, which is something other social network platforms have not yet achieved. In addition to being an inevitable source of customer entertainment, this is also a great opportunity for partners, and examples of collaboration were presented yesterday, such as those with Netflix, or with the well known GoFundMe platform, to share news of various charity campaigns.

Scan will allow us to scan everything around us in order to interact with objects and living creatures, whether it is banknotes, monuments, or our pets in expanded reality. Otherwise, Scan was created based on the startup of Scan.me.

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

 

Click here for the original article by Mia Biberovic for Netokracija

Friday, 5 April 2019

Croatian Company ''Include'' Continues with Exports and New Markets

At the beginning of 2019, the Croatian company Include signed a two-year distribution agreement with one of the largest global providers of telecommunications services - Deutsche Telekom.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 4th of April, 2019, 42 global markets, six continents, 260 cities across the world, more than 1000 smart benches installed, cooperation with major global corporations, the European Parliament, Deloitte, Forbes... all in just four years - this is just part of the successful results the Croatian company Include from Solin has achieved since May 2015, when the first smart bench was introduced, until the beginning of 2019.

In the first quarter, Solin's Include didn't manage to acheive any real or significant results, as most markets were still covered by snow, and the first installations usually only begin in spring, but in 2019, Include achieved significant export performance. The amount of ordered benches, when compared to the first quarter of 2018, just one year ago, increased by an impressive 109 percent to  a staggering 2.3 million kuna, while total revenues increased by 115 percent.

At the beginning of this year, Include signed a two-year distribution agreement with one of the largest global providers of telecommunications services, Deutsche Telekom. The contract was signed for fifty global markets, and Include became one of the few Croatian companies with this type of somewhat prestigious contract.

In January this year, 44 Steora smart benches worth over 1.1 million kuna were sold and a new market opened its doors, Poland. The largest share of the bench sales relate to exports, and the Steora smart bench has found its way across Europe, having been delivered to Italy, France, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and Spain.

In February this year, Include continued its export activities - with new orders from neighbouring Montenegro, a new market opened (Chile, with two Steora Standard benches) and the month ended with deliveries of 27 smart bench to Greece, Ireland, Israel, Poland, Italy, and Hungary.

March 2019, as the ''test polygon'' for spring, resulted in orders of a new product from Include's sales portfolio - the Monna cyclo tables for Dublin. The new product was presented at the Smart City Expo World Congress in mid-November 2018 in Barcelona, Spain. In addition, two new distribution agreements were signed (Slovenia - 50 benches, France - 72 benches), five Steora benches for Chile and Bermuda were ordered, as were 38 benches for other European countries - the United Kingdom, France, and Montenegro.

It's certainly important to highlight the continuation of Include's global digital outdoor advertising project via the Steora Urban+ smart benches. After they started the project with the installation of fifteen Steora Urban+ benches in Bratislava (at the best locations in the city), at the end of 2018, the project increased its pace in March this year with the another fifteen new Steora Urban+ smart benches, this time in Dublin, Ireland.

Currently, two major cities in the European Union are using Include's external digital advertising system through the Steora smart bench, it is an advanced DOOH system developed within the company itself. The system works using Facebook-like technology, enabling you to choose multiple advertising screens at the same time, set marketing campaign goals, and track advertising results in real-time.

Croatia's Include expects significant business results in the upcoming two quarters, and in addition to that, the realisation of a new investment round is being prepared, followed by the expansion of production capacities and the recruitment of new employees.

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

Thursday, 4 April 2019

Potential for Croatian Producers as Prosciutto Exports Continue to Grow

As Morski writes on the 3rd of April, 2019, what has been happening with prosciutto for the past three to four years is truly spectacular. Due to its superior properties and specific traditional production technology, Croatian prosciutto producers have stumbled upon some great export potential and even more potential for the product's better placement in Croatian tourism through the country's already rich gastronomic offer.

When compared to five years ago in 2014, exports have increased in quantity by fourteen times, and perhaps most importantly, in value eleven times. Approximately 88 percent of total exports go to the EU market, and just over eleven percent go to CEFTA countries.

''The latest 2018 statistics show an increase in exports of shank and aitchbone products by nearly sixty percent, but unfortunately, we still don't even cover a third of imports. We need new investments and we need to invest in new prosciutto production capacities to double our production, and 700,000 pieces annually to at least meet the needs of the domestic market,'' said Dragan Kovačević, vice president of the Croatian Chamber of Economy for Agriculture and Tourism, at a press conference announcing the event Days of Croatian Prosciutto.

Ante Madir, Executive Director of the "Hrvatsko pršuta" (Croatian prosciutto) cluster, which brings together producers responsible for 95 percent of the total prosciutto production in the Republic of Croatia, explained more precisely what awaits Croatia on the fifth Days of Croatian prosciutto, which is being held from the 26th to the 27th of April at the Zagreb International Hotel this year.

''On the first day, we'll have a manifestation with round tables and workshops, the expert part of the gathering, and the second day at Ban Jelačić Square, there'll be a show-selling part where people can taste our prosciutto,'' Madir said, adding that they decided on Zagreb because quite a large market and a high demand for the product can be found in the Croatian capital.

"What's been happening with prosciutto over the past three to four years is truly spectacular. The signs of protection (special labels) are our tickets to the wider European Union market, that's very important for being able to [have our products] arrive to shop shelves. In Croatia, we still need to work on presenting [our products] to consumers to have them pay more money for something which is domestic and specific,'' said Igor Miljak, chairman of the PPK Karlovac meat industry, stressing that Croatia still doesn't have key gastro brands that are recognised on the European or global market, but it definitely does have the quality to be able to cope well with the competition.

Ana Babić from Voštane pršut, a representative of the Association of Dalmatian Prosciutto, explained the difference between Dalmatian and Istrian, or more specifically Krk prosciutto.

''Dalmatian prosciutto is smoked, while Istrian and Krk prosciutto isn't. There are no additives or preservatives in its production, and the process itself lasts for at least a year,'' Babić explained, adding that the tradition of Dalmatian prosciutto production draws its roots from as far back as ancient Roman times.

Drago Pletikosa of Belcrotrade and the president of the Association of Drniš pršut stressed that Drniš prosciutto is a little and is therefore certified, although there is no difference between Drniš and Dalmatian prosciutto when it comes to the production process itself.

''Last year, we imported 3,848 tons of products worth more than 21.5 million euros and exported 1.113 tons (6.5 million euros). Compared to 2014, exports have increased in quantity fourteen times, and by value eleven times. Approximately 88 percent of our total exports go to the EU market, and just over eleven percent go to CEFTA countries. We export the most to Slovenia (35.5 percent of total exports) and to Italy (28.1 percent),'' stated Pletikosa.

''This event brings together and promotes prosciutto producers from all over the country, whose products are protected by a stamp of designation of origin, and labels of geographical origin (Krk, Dalmatian and Drniš prosciutto) at the EU level,'' stated the Croatian Chamber of Commerce (HGK).

Quality labels for consumers guarantee the purchase of authentic and properly controlled products, with recognised quality and a local origin. Protecting products without educating consumers and business partners about its proper valuation has no great benefit. Therefore, this event contributes to the strengthening of the recognisability of these Croatian meat products with higher added value and a better market positioning, all with the aim of developing the wider Croatian economy.

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