Friday, 22 November 2019

Investments in Croatian Startups to Reach 120 Million USD in 2019

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Bernard Ivezic writes on the 21st of November, 2019, the largest VC fund investing in startups in the EU has announced that Croatia is the 20th largest in continental Europe in terms of investment and that its number of developers is growing. Investments in Croatian startups this year will reach a record 120 million US dollars according to Atomico, which is otherwise Europe's largest startup fund.

In an annual review of "The State of European Tech 2019", Atomico states that Croatia is twentieth in Europe in terms of received investments in startups.

This is the best description of the Croatian startup scene since the 2016 report, when Atomico put Croatia on the startup map of Europe for the very first time, and when it announced that 100 million US dollars had been invested in startups here between 2012-2016. Atomic's announcement for 2019 is even better when one considers that this year is not the largest by number of major startup investments.

Back in 2015, there were five in Croatia. A year later, there were ten, then eight, and then ten again last year. Atomico also released some information about business angels in Croatia for the first time. It states that in 92 percent of cases, they are men. On the other hand, it is interesting that in the neighbouring countries of Bulgaria and Macedonia as many as 24 percent of business angels are women. The majority of business angel women are in Switzerland, making up 27 percent of the total business angels in that country. In neighbouring Slovenia, that figure stands at 13 percent.

According to the largest startup fund in Europe, there are 35,300 developers in Croatia, making it the 28th country on the old continent. Needless to say, this is a very poor position indeed. However, Atomico has recognised that the number of developers is increasing, and there were 29,700 of them last year alone.

Infobip is expected to reach the status of a company worth more than 1 billion US dollars during the first half of 2020, finally placing Croatia on the list of countries with such companies operating within it.

In Europe, unicorn startups exist in as many as 20 countries. Atomico concludes that the largest communities of Croatian startups are located in Zagreb, Split and Rijeka.

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

Sunday, 10 November 2019

From Fun to Global Market: Croatian Company Pixblasters Gaining Traction

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Sergej Novosel Vuckovic writes on the 10th of November, 2019, with over twenty years of professional experience working on the development of advanced electronic systems, as well as a good dose of enthusiasm and ''zeal'' for putting together what they personally care about and love, these two colleagues and friends from Zagreb, Goran Fiolić and Gordan Galić, launched the startup Pixblasters.

This Croatian startup's aim is to create and manufacture an innovative RGB LED controller, an electrical device that would enable both professionals and amateurs, and even those without any experience and knowledge of electronics, to create large video screens using so-called addressable LED strips.

They formulated their desire into a project and launched it on the Crowd Supply web platform, intended for the group financing of (technology) projects. The crowdfunding campaign started about a month ago and has already raised about 6,000 US dollars out of a target of 18,000 dollars in this round that ends in twelve days. Why did they decide to make such a bold move, both in terms of production ideas and in raising capital? Who are the real minds behind Pixblasters?

''We're a ''maker'' duo with experience in significantly more complex projects executed for the global market. Today, when the startup culture and entrepreneurship that are lagging behind here when compared to Western countries are justifiably promoted, we may be a slightly different team that embarked on a project primarily out of fun and curiosity.

After completing the prototype, which surprised us both with its attractiveness and at the urging of our friends and colleagues, we decided to launch a project with the aim of producing a professional electronic controller that would be commercially interesting. We like to do things that interest us. It can be a small electronic dust detector or several hundred pounds a heavy machine with electronically controlled pneumatic and electric motor subsystems,'' explains Galić on his own and Fiolić's behalf.

They knew just what they were talking about when it comes to LED screens and their experiences stretching twenty years, and the story of Pixblasters was born.

"It really is a true anecdote. We were both thinking of building such screens at the time, but it was an undertaking that went beyond the capabilities of most self-builders. A minimum of 3 LEDs are required for one pixel (dot on the screen) of LED screens: red, green and blue. While red and green diodes were relatively inexpensive at the time we're talking about, the blue ones cost about 40 kuna  per piece due to their specific construction.

The purchase price of diodes for a display with a resolution of 120x50 pixels, like the display from our campaign, costed around 300,000 kuna, without the cost of purchasing other electronic parts. We've concluded that as technology advances, such a device today has to cost significantly less and must be accessible to everyone. Indeed, our calculation has shown that LED screens of this resolution could be built today at 100 times less cost,'' explains Gordan.

This pair of Zagreb techno ''makers'' point out that the Pixblasters device is fully prepared and adapted for batch production, which is, after all, their ultimate goal. However, they emphasise that their LED controller is not a finished consumer product, but a device that just allows for the construction of large and attractive LED screens.

“The first series will be produced in Slovenia because of our previous business connections.

When thinking about Croatia, the manufacturing capabilities and capacities of Croatian electronic device manufacturing companies have grown significantly in recent years. I think they are also unduly underrated. Until a few years ago, it would have been relatively difficult to produce a Pixblasters controller complexity device in Croatia, but today it's possible and we plan to work on it,'' Galić reveals.

They are aware that for the needs of the big market, they should also have larger sources of funding, for example, from competitions from ministries or indeed from private sponsors, but for now, Pixblasters is being promoted as a DIY solution.

The advantage of their controllers, they describe, is that they would, with maximum cost-effectiveness, deliver the most important features of LED screens: simple content generation, attractive video display, remote application management and large dimensions.

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

Wednesday, 11 September 2019

Croatian Startup ''Worig'' Aims to Help Dire Long Term Rent Situation

Instead of interventionism and a new web search engine, the duo behind this Croatian startup wants to solve the problem of housing shortages on fintech principles.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Bernard Ivezic writes on the 10th of September, 2019, Worig is the first Croatian startup for long-term rental apartments. While answers to this burning problem all over Croatia is most often sought in state and city interventionism or in the creation of more advanced web search engines, this Split duo, brothers Nino and Deni Ćosić, approached the problem in a different way and created an impressive fintech startup.

Nino Ćosić, CEO of Worig, says that the key to the problem on this market, as well as unusual and exorbitant conditions for renters, is a chronic lack of information about both renters and those who seek rental agreements.

"Worig wants to introduce a credit rating system for renters in Croatia and beyond, across the EU, which would give reliable tenants the opportunity to rent an apartment on more favourable terms, while reliable renters could get better tenants, thereby providing security and protection," explained Ćosić. This innovative Croatian-made system, which combines banking, lending and insurance, is not entirely new. It exists in various forms in Switzerland and Germany, but Ćosić points out the fact that it has not been digitised there.

"There are places where, because of the lack of such a service, especially in tourist destinations, renters think that it's always better to go for short-term rentals. However, this really isn't the case, and Worig would help them see this in terms of market principles. For people who decide instead to buy an apartment, it could help them discover how much of a cost-effective option that is,'' Ćosić says.

Although there are still similar startups that exist across the EU, a number of potential investors have shown considerable interest in this Croatian startup over the last six months. At the beginning of the year, the new Croatian startup entered the shortlist of the best at one of Europe's largest startup festivals, TNW in Amsterdam. Then, EIT Digital invested a very welcome 15,000 euros in it.

Worig then entered the largest Slovenian startup accelerator, ABC, which is the only regional partner of EIT Digital. Finally, in the last two weeks, Worig won the Croatian finals of RBA's Elevator Challenge - winning 5,000 euros, then the largest Croatian VC fund, Fil Rouge, gave them an initial investment of 50,000 euros.

Worig's market is quite large. According to Eurostat, 102.7 million EU citizens live in market-rented apartments, an additional 51.3 million live in free-of-charge apartments, while the remaining 359 million live in their own apartments.

The situation is different in Croatia. The percentage of tenants is half of that of the European Union and is around 10 percent (approximately 400,000 citizens). In addition, around 90 percent of tenants in Croatia, according to Eurostat, have either preferential or free leases. And while in some countries, such as Germany, the market is so regulated that interviewees from the development industry have no doubts about the figures there, the Croatian market is said to be extremely grey and so unregulated that they consider Eurostat's statistics for Croatia to be entirely incorrect.

Among other things, they claim that the number of people who rent apartments in Croatia is much higher, and Ćosić believes the same.

"My estimate is that in our country, 12 percent of citizens rent apartments, similar to the situation in Slovenia, but in our country, this ia a market that is completely unregulated and very grey," Ćosić stated.

Eurostat's data, furthermore, doesn't do well to indicate that the number of rental apartments varies by country and by year, and this also leads to distrust in such statistics. In the United States, the Pew Research Centre states that the number of apartments offered for rent from 1965 to 2016 has doubled to 43.3 percent, and jumped by about ten percentage points in the last ten years. Namely, Americans are renting apartments more than ever before. On the other hand, the supply of rental apartments has stabilised in the last decade, to 75 million units.

Ćosić says that similar trends are followed in the European Union, and especially here in Croatia.

"This tourist season in Croatia has shown that there will be no room for all apartment owners on the day-to-day rental market, and Airbnb has already seen a 30 percent increase in long-term rental apartments," Ćosić says. He added that he does not expect that, on September the 15th, when PSD2 regulations are put into service and their service starts, that their startup will become an instant hit in Croatia.

Initially, he sees opportunities in Austria, Switzerland and Germany. "In Switzerland, you have these credit ratings, but they're not digitised, nor are all of them applicable to rentals, rather just to buying an apartment," Ćosić said.

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

Friday, 21 June 2019

Osijek Startup ''Orqa'' Collects 1.5 Million Kuna in 24 Hours

Croatian companies are often forced to deal with cruel bureaucracy and draconian laws governing that red tape. Many would-be entrepreneurs sadly end up with a bitter taste left in their mouths after an attempt to get their ideas of the ground here in Croatia, but not everything is quite so bleak. Meet Orqa, a Croatian startup from the Eastern Croatian city of Osijek, which is the fastest growing Croatian Kickstarter campaign so far.

As Bernard Ivezic/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 18th of June, 2019, this Osijek-based startup Orqa has enjoyed the fastest growing Kickstarter campaign in the Republic of Croatia to date. In less than 24 hours, Orqa managed to collect a record 1.5 million kuna in a mere 25 hours for its very first product - Orqa FPV.One.

The Orqa FPV.One is, or perhaps it's better to say are, the most advanced glasses for the operation of drones from a distance in the entire world. This was stated by Osijek's Orqa, and they have started to validate that bold claim via Kickstarter quite effectively.

Orqa is entering the market of First Person View (FPV) devices that are becoming more and more popular worldwide due to the increasing number of drones and remote managed devices that users have so far managed over cell phones, tablets, or other devices.

This group of innovative entrepreneurs from Osijek have plans and goals that are far from modest, and this includes their startup's very name. Orqa, or orca (killer whale) in English (orka in Croatian) is the name of the only known type of whale that can and will go out of its way to hound and kill a shark.

Currently, the best-selling FPV glasses are produced by the Chinese company Fat Shark, which is in itself an ironic name given the name of the Osijek-based startup.

Ivan Jelušić, operations leader and Srđan Kovačević, Orqa's executive director, who began their cooperation with the creation of a wall-mounted USB charger, won the Idea Knockout competition with their glasses last year and, thanks to this, they were able to go ahead and present their product across the Atlantic in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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

Thursday, 20 June 2019

Croatian Entrepreneur Marin Bek Continues to Impress

As Novac/Gordana Grgas writes on the 20th of June, 2019, Marin Bek is just 33 years old, is a Croatian entrepreneur and has founded three technology startups so far, and two have not only survived, but flourished. In Croatia, they have twenty employees, and by the end of the year, as announced, that number will hopefully be doubled. At the recent JobFair which was held in Zagreb, many candidates were attracted and interviews are getting under way now.

Bek is a member of a promising new generation of Croatian entrepreneurs who are experiencing problems around them and are therefore creating smart IT solutions to deal with them instead of merely complaining. Bek first ''dived into the water'' after graduating from the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing in Zagreb, and after borrowing 3000 kuna from his cousins to be able to participate in the American startup accelerator Foundation Institute in Zagreb back in 2012.

He first began his startup in the Silicon Valley, with a startup for autonomous underwater vehicles that he called Marine Tech Factory (MTF), he raised capital from numerous business angels, and sought to sell a solution to the oil industry. That, however, unfortunately failed.

When talking about the reasons for that early failure, with a smile on his face, Bek states that he believes he probably came out with it too early on the market.

"Today, I'd say that I worked on underwater drones, which was my graduate thesis at FER. Now that's sitting and collecting dust in a warehouse at the faculty. When the MTF idea collapsed, I was left without any money so I found a job as an IT developer,'' stated Bek when discussing his very first experiences in the United States.

But this failure, and then climbing up to the position of technology director in an innovative startup called Nextuser from San Francisco, where he participated in finding an investor in the total amount of 2.5 million dollars, brought him, as he himself noted, knowledge and a much better feeling for his return to the challenging entrepreneurial waters.

To speak more specifically, in the seed round of capital that just closed for his startup, the main investor is a Canadian, who he initially met back then. Meet Ascalia, a Croatian company that has raised about 200,000 euros, and is immediately moving forward to the much larger so-called ''A round'', which deals with venture capital funds in the amount of about one million euros.

"Ascalia must grow fast," claims Bek resolutely. The idea behind it was conceived for IoT (Internet of Things) systems in the industry and in cities.

With his partner with Dejan Strbad, he also leads Kraken, a local IT company that is approaching about one million euros of income in the field of distributed data collection and processing systems with the help of machine learning. They therefore deal with large data, and their projects include those for Carrefour, Nestle, Ferrero and even Forbes.

Ascalia is currently focused on industry, and this Croatian entrepreneur was given a lift recently with a victory at the Start.Up! Germany Roadshow competition, and owing to that victory, in autumn he will take a tour of the Bavarian factories.

They have created software and a device called ADS, a kind of "plug socket" that supports numerous protocols for industrial machines that have been in existence since 1979, and then connects them to the Internet. Thus, a smart company is created without the need for any big investments, and its a viable Croatian solution that they'll also try to sell to the Germans.

''Protocol is the way the machines speak to each other, through which information is transmitted. Through our device and software, we can measure and monitor the work of the machines online, even with the old ones that are still heavily used in the industry. In the case of sawmills, one of which is one of our clients, it means that the device can read the data coming from the saw, and with the application of artificial intelligence, it can predict when some of them will break. Through emails or via the application (app), this message will be sent to a manager who can then respond in time,'' explained this highly talented Croatian entrepreneur.

The main mission of Ascalia is precisely that, optimising energy consumption and improving production processes. The main clients in Croatia are industrial equipment dealers who also maintain factory facilities, and one of them, Zigg-Pro, actually gave them the idea to develop ADS.

''This is how you raise the level of modernisation, and there's no breakdown of the plant's system of operation and no expensive new machines have to be procured,'' explained Bek. The company's interest in making its plant ''smarter'' is great, various technical directors have visited, and their plants are currently in Delnice, with another near Zagreb.

They're only now ''waking up'', and they're currently not active in looking for clients, first they have to grow financially and personally, explains Bek. Although in his business biography he notes that his expertise in IoT systems and the integration of machine learning algorithms into everyday processes "is now his main activity'' as a manager.

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

Saturday, 1 June 2019

Bjelovar Presents Financial Award to Best Startup in 2019

When you think of Bjelovar, the first thing that comes into your head almost certainly isn't startups and forward thinking business practice. Such things are lagging in Croatia as a whole, but this continental Croatian town might just surprise you yet.

The Croatian startup scene is a bit of a mixed bag. It's rare to see a country which boasts such levels of talent and innovation and yet be governed by a state which really doesn't understand, nor is it ready to embrace the idea of startups. Despite obstacles, of which there are many, there are steps being taken, at the regional and city level if not at the state level, to provide Croatia's startups with help, rewards, and advice. Bjelovar in continental Croatia is doing just that.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 31st of May, 2019, the winner of the second edition of "Bjelovar Startup 2019" and the winner of a very welcome prize of 100,000 kuna was Goran Pauška with his special vehicle monitoring system.

The 100,000 kuna award will be invested back into the development and production of a product that has already been tested and helps in the control of specialised vehicles such as those driven by firefighters and other emergency vehicles.

CRANE President Davorin Štetner and members of the Management Board Hrvoje Prpić and Saša Cvetojević were the members of the expert commission who decided on the winner in Bjelovar, who was among the five other finalists.

Bjelovar Mayor Dario Hrebak thanked everyone who came forward with their respective entrepreneurial ideas, announced Startup 2020, and called on all entrepreneurs with good ideas to start getting properly prepared right now.

"You have mobile phones like we do in Zagreb, there is no reason not to be able to present us with the new InfoBip," Prpić stated encouragingly.

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

Thursday, 30 May 2019

First Time at Italian ScaleIT Conference for Successful Croatian Startup

The presentation of this Croatian startup from Sveta Nedelja in Italy is due to its encouraging levels of success and the realisation of organisers that Croatia boasts a quiet but rather promising startup scene, despite all of the negative headlines.

As Bernard Ivezic/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 29th of May, 2019, one of the largest Italian startup conferences, ScaleIT, opened up for new companies from the Republic of Croatia for the first time this year. ScaleIT is an event that brings together fifteen of the most successful startups, mostly from Italy but also from abroad, and connects them with more than seventy VC funds and 150 active business angels.

Lorenzo Franchini, the founder of the ScaleIT program and the founder of the Italian Angels for Growth business association says that due to the eighty million euro Hyundai investment in Croatia's wildly successful Rimac Automobili, headed by Mate Rimac, he is now aware that there are also promising scaleups and other rapidly expanding businesses located in neighbouring Croatia.

"Inspired by the story of Rimac, who has collected more than one hundred million dollars from major international brands such as Hyundai, Kia, Porsche, Camel Grupai and others," stated Franchini.

He added that ScaleIT is looking for startups who want to expand onto international markets and need between three and thirty million euros in capital.

"We create a healthy balance of more than ten investors per single scaleup, and in the last three years, we've secured more than 230 million dollars in capital," said Franchini.

Among the group of investors who will listen the pitches of fifteen of the best startups are investment houses such as Accela, Cisco Investment, EarlyBird VC, Eight Roads, Holtzbrinck Ventures, Index Ventures, Iris Capitals and Partech Ventures, as well as companies such as Euronex, AWS, to Salesforce.

Over the past several years, the aforementioned Italian conference has successfully attracted startups from Slovenia, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Greece and the Czech Republic, in addition to those from Italy.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business page for much more on Croatian companies, Croatian startups, Croatian products and services and the general Croatian investment climate.


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

Tuesday, 21 May 2019

Zagreb Software Company Launches Application for Global Hotel Chains

As Lucija Spiljak/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 21st of May, 2019, the Zagreb software company Ingemark and the RoomOrders startup, launched by Croats despite having been registered in America, created the first application (app) for ordering food from hotels to hotel rooms and started to conquer the many challenges of the huge global market. They began with the development of this application at the end of 2017, and back then, as a pilot project, they first tested it out at the Hilton Hotel in Boston.

According to them, they will launch RoomOrders at the Hilton Sydney hotel, and then in Belgrade's Hilton in Serbia by the end of the month. The application's software, in which 2 million euro has so far been invested was started by the Zagreb-based company Ingemark, which has been in existence since as far back as 1990, and as of 2006, it has specialised in software development by order.

Funds for the application's development have also been withdrawn from EU funds. In the list of references are big clients such as Agrokor, Adris, HT... One of the most significant cooperations was, as they say, one in the Middle East where clients developed a platform that distributed multimedia content, and soon their latest project, ZorroTines, a regional music platform, will see the light of day right here on the Croatian market. Right now, it seems that this Zagreb company's RoomOrders app is going to go very far indeed.

As Eugene Brčić Jones, the marketing and sales manager at RoomOrders revealed, last week at the International Hotel Technology Forum in Zagreb, the company negotiated with numerous hotel industry leaders about integrating their products.

"We've intrigued the leading world chains and deepened the existing relationships, about which we're certain will bring us to the position of ''disrupter'' of the in-room dining segment within the hotel industry," Brčić Jones said, adding that he believes that in several years, it will be present in a number of world hotels which boast 4 and 5 stars.

"With the help of the RoomOrders application, guests in hotels can order food to their rooms in a few clicks and not in the ''old fashioned'' way. In addition to it having a faster mode, hotels can embark on this project without any large investments," explained Ingemark's director Jurica Mikulić, adding that the application has managed to receive some excellent initial customer reviews and financial results for the hotel. Hilton in Boston has increased its average order value by as much as thirty percent.

''We offer a simple solution that not only increases revenue, but promotes hotels through user-generated content and facilitates analytics. The greatest benefit is that this solution can be implemented without disturbances to the processes involved, and it provides almost instantaneous results,'' Brčić Jones added.

The author of the application, Haris Dizdarević, explained that the creation of RoomOrders was triggered by the current rather obsolete ways of ordering and the obvious need for faster selection and the changing of the menu that guests want in the room.

"We realised we should digitise the offer and thus expand it. The simple idea has become a complex but a successful project," said Dizdarević, explaining that the positive signal was the fact that hotel guests continue to use the application after the first time of using it, and for several days in a row. Although they acknowledge that the Croatian market is not really a priority, they're still negotiating with several Croatian hotels in Dubrovnik and with Maistra, Blue Lagoon (Plava Laguna) and Liburna, and that soon, the application will be launched in Sheraton, part of the huge global Marriott hotel chain.

Otherwise, RoomOrders was introduced DoubleTree by Hilton in Zagreb a few months ago, but then it was a modified version of the app.

"With the new application or system, the guest can, as soon as he is given the room after booking, in advance, even when travelling, immediately choose a range of dishes and orders so that it's ready and waiting in the room upon their arrival. The guest doesn't need to order it from the hotel room, they can do it in advance and choose from a simple and flexible application where all the photos, descriptions and the prices of the food and drinks in the hotel's offer are,'' they explain from hotel Sheraton where this new type of offer and service will be on offer by the end of May, which will, as they say, bring about improvements.

"The application also enables sharing of guest experience on the platform, real-time appraisal of food and services so that the hotel can almost react at the same time to all guests' comments and adapt to the current wishes and preferences of the guest," they added from Sheraton.

"We're sure that at some point there will be some competitors in this segment on the market, but we believe that we're strong and already ahead of them all. We're focusing on the development of this product which we want to make perfect. Along with marketing, the analytic component is the most important, to be more concrete, the analysis of the reactions, comments and the number of orders, so, the entire internal process. We hope to conclude this year with good results and continue to expand successfully,'' Brčić Jones concluded.

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


Click here for the original article by Lucija Spiljak for Poslovni Dnevnik

Saturday, 20 April 2019

Croatian Startup and Entrepreneurship Discussion in Koprivnica

''The most important thing is to have a clear plan and a vision and to be persistent and never give up, because every good idea will find its way to a buyer,'' this was the message sent out to those thinking of becoming Croatian entrepreneurs.

As Ivan Tominac/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 18th of April, 2019, an event organised by Vecernji list and Poslovni dnevnik has the ultimate goal of which is the retention of young educated people in Croatia, and after Osijek, the event will move to Koprivnica, two continental Croatian regions which are often overlooked.

The event will include a tender for student development projects, round tables and forums entitled ''Future in Croatia'' which will be held across six Croatian cities in cooperation with six universities and a traveling exhibition to mark the the occasion of the 60th anniversary of Večernji list. In Koprivnica, the event will be held in cooperation with the North University on Tuesday at 10:00. Croatia's Minister of Tourism Gari Cappelli will give his view of Croatia and available opportunities, and before that, the event will be bringing two stories from Koprivnica that prove that you definitely can succeed in Croatia.

Boris Poljak, the owner of the Pobis company, noted at the very beginning of the conversation that entrepreneurship is not easy but challenging as the market does indeed offer countless possibilities, but whether or not we're successful is down to nobody and nothing but us.

"Being an entrepreneur depends on the person, and not on the place he's in. If one has the will and the desire to be an entrepreneur, then he won't care whether he's doing it in Croatia, Austria, Germany, or elsewhere," Boris Poljak said. For success, it's important to abide by the established plan and rules of the game, ie, certain legal frameworks.

According to him, young people aren't going straight into business today, but instead, they're moving into ''entrepreneurial waters'' because they want to ensure a secure existence for themselves. "The statistics on the opening and the closing of companies is proof of this. Unfortunately, many people don't succeed, but there are many who do succeed and who achieve excellent results here, and more and more are doing so internationally. Running your own business today doesn't require that much capital," Poljak stated with a short and clear message that says that without a clear plan and vision there can be no success.

"You have to work really hard with young people, they're most often not prepared for work and have a lot of prejudices towards employers," emphasised Poljak, adding that in his company he recognised that with the effort and investment poured into young people, he was creating quality staff who could compete on the world market level. Young people are increasingly involved in entrepreneurial ventures, and as a result, there are numerous startups popping up all the time across Croatia, leading to more tenders and investments.

Codebox managed to stumble upon such a welcome fat, the core activity of this organisation is the creation of personalised software, web design, computer equipment maintenance, and processing and data transfer. Martin Kolarić and Filip Stojić began on this path through a startup tender, and today they can safely say that it was a great opportunity to gain new experiences, try out their knowledge and skills and also have some fun.

"For all those who want to be successful, our advice is to work on themselves and their knowledge. A great deal of information is available to all of us and we have the opportunity of continuous learning and training. Innovation and creativity are the most important competencies today, which is why we need to work on our own improvement, this is the only path to real success,'' concluded Martin Kolarić.

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


Click here for the original article by Ivan Tominac for Poslovni Dnevnik

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

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