Thursday, 5 August 2021

Deutsche Bahn Group Becomes Investor in Croatian Gideon Brothers

August the 5th, 2021 - The Croatian Gideon Brothers company specialises in robotics and has gained more and more attention of late. The company's latest foreign investor is no less than the well known Deutsche Bahn Group.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Lucija Spiljak writes, the Croatian Gideon Brothers company, which deals with robotics and software solutions based on artificial intelligence (AI), recently announced an investment from Deutsche Bahn Digital Ventures (DBDV), a venture capital subsidiary of the Deutsche Bahn Group, as part of a 32 million US dollars Series A funding round.

“Gideon Brothers is developing products that change the rules of the game, and they've proven they have significant growth and market interest. We believe that the future of mobile robotics will be determined by autonomy based on AI and 3D robotic vision, and we're very pleased to welcome the Croatian Gideon Brothers company as one of the companies in our portfolio,'' said Boris Kühn, CEO of DB Digital Ventures.

The Series A Edition

Series A was led by Koch Disruptive Technologies with the participation of DB Schenker, Prologis Ventures and Rite-Hit. This round of financing was joined by some of the existing shareholders of Gideon Brothers who were among the first investors: TransferWise (now Wise) co-founder Taavet Hinrikus, Pentland Ventures, Peaksjah, HCVC (HardwareClub), Ivan Topcic, Nenad Bakic and Luca Ascani.

According to the Croatian Gideon Brothers company, the recapitalisation of the A-Series will accelerate the development and commercialisation of the company's autonomous mobile robots (AMR) that automate horizontal and vertical material handling.

They also plan to expand to Germany in the City of Munich and to the US in Boston where they will open offices and expand the operations of the Production, Sales, Marketing and Customer Success departments in key markets of the European Union and the USA.

Gideon Brothers specialises in the flexible automation of horizontal and vertical material handling operations in unstructured, human-operated warehousing, manufacturing and retail environments.

With their advanced mobile robots and comprehensive software solutions for autonomous indoor and outdoor operations, they work to help companies solve the most complex supply chain challenges of today: growing customer expectations, increased product variability and growth in logistics volumes, increasingly diverse distribution channels, and labour shortages in particular.

The increase of efficiency

As they point out, the autonomous mobile robots (AMR) made by the Croatian Gideon Brothers company increase efficiency and productivity by taking on low value-added operations, such as transporting, retrieving or the disposing of products, so that employees can engage in more complex tasks.

They say that with advanced Gideon Brothers technology, real collaboration between humans and robots is finally becoming possible and opening up more and more new opportunities for growth.

“The growing demand for smart automation solutions confirms the belief that autonomous robots are an indispensable tool for building sustainable growth. We're extremely pleased to have the opportunity to build partnerships with innovation leaders who share our vision - creating new synergies that bring real collaboration between humans and autonomous robotic vehicles powered by our next-generation technology,'' said Matija Kopic, the CEO of Gideon Brothers.

To briefly recall, this successful Croatian company recently entered into a partnership with Vector Conveyors from Spain, which was their first distributor for the Spanish market.

They explained that the partnership is part of their sales strategy that includes direct sales channels to key customers and indirect sales channels, by expanding the network of distributors through which they will offer their products, services, technical support and system integration.

For more, follow Made in Croatia.

Friday, 30 July 2021

Uplift Platform Seeks to Aid Small Enterprises in Market Development

July the 30th, 2021 - The Uplift platform is a Croatian platform aimed at providing help and aid to micro and small enterprises in terms of their wider market development.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Lucija Spiljak writes, micro, small and medium entrepreneurship is recognised as one of the key segments of the Croatian economy, and encouraging their improvement is vital for the development of a better and more competitive economy, at least according to Gea Kariz, the Marketing Manager at Mastercard, which is the holder of the Uplift.hr platform.

The Uplift platform is aimed at helping micro-enterprises, as well as small and medium-sized enterprises in their growth and development of business here in Croatia, offering more than 130 informative and educational texts, more than fifteen videos, as well as possibilities for networking, mentoring and even promotion.

Relevant research, analyses and studies in cooperation with the Zagreb Institute of Economics will be regularly published on the Uplift platform, in order to educate and inspire those seeking such help. "Through the Uplift project, we want to provide this segment with everything that is needed for the technological and market development of these companies," added Kariz.

Advice will be shared by numerous Croatian experts from various, sometimes very different fields of expertise, in order to provide all those seeking the Uplift platform's help with a spring in their step.

On the site, visitors will be able to watch a series of video Uplift interviews with well known Croatian TV presenter and editor Zoran Sprajc, where entrepreneurs, experts and consultants will explain what obstacles they have encountered in their business journeys and what steps need to be taken in order to run a successful business.

Luka Baranovic from Humanact, Hrvoje Cosic from Aircash, Hrvoje Bujas from Crno jajete, Maruska Vizek from the Institute of Economics, Zagreb, Zoran Pejovic from Paradox Hospitality, Marin Medak from RougeMarina are just some of the interlocutors.

As part of the Uplift platform, a special educational programme has been designed, Uplift Academy, aimed primarily at micro, small and medium-sized enterprises from the tourism sector. The idea is to adapt the programme to the current needs of the market through the seasons.

The online programme lasts 20 weeks and a total of 200 hours is conducted by Algebra, beginning in October this year. The first generation of the academy will consist of 32 scholarship holders who will have the opportunity to attend the Uplift Academy for free.

For more, follow Made in Croatia.

Wednesday, 28 July 2021

Osijek PLANtaza Association Gives Eastern Croatian City New, Positive Shine

July the 28th, 2021 - The Osijek PLANtaza Association (Udruga) has, for seven whole years now, been breathing life and positivity back into that Eastern Croatian city.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Lucija Spiljak writes, associations form an important tool in community development, but also in encouraging the empowerment of individuals through volunteer or work experience, given that in Croatia, associations are often both employers and creators of new content.

''They shouldn't be underestimated, and they should be given concrete support and encourage their development,'' stated Darija Walter, president of the Osijek PLANtaza Association, which was founded back in 2014 by a group of enthusiasts with the desire to start positive stories in their often overlooked city.

From the very beginning, they have been focused on promoting a sustainable way of life, ecology, creativity and art, as well as engaging in socially responsible business, thus reviving the small but very strong and creative Osijek scene.

The Osijek PLANtaza Association currently boasts 40 members, half of whom are active, and on the eve of their seventh birthday, they have more than 140 implemented projects and activities under their belt, they also continue to cooperate with a large number of civil society organisations, creative individuals and entrepreneurs, and strengthen their own forces with new members.

Urban interventions in Osijek

Darija says that the first projects of the Osijek PLANtaza Association were various creative and ecological workshops, the ReArt festival and the Papergirl project, which they adapted to their needs and created a new concept of event/socialising with an emphasis placed primarily on exchanging creativity in different locations.

When they founded the association, they were supported by several other existing Osijek associations - the Shine Dance Studio, the Slama Association and the Slap Creative Development Association - with which they still cooperate and continue to launch new projects, but the cooperation has expanded beyond Osijek and even beyond Croatian borders. An example of that is the Vucedol Interreg project, which they;re currently implementing with partners from Budapest and Pecs (Hungary), as well as the Museum of Vucedol Culture (Croatia).

“Cross-border cooperation on the Interreg project will only further strengthen our capacities and give us a spring in our steps for some new ideas, especially with organisations that share our views on doing responsible business and having a sustainable view of the future. Fortunately, more and more individuals are launching healthy and sustainable stories through actions via associations or independently on the development of a sustainable lifestyle that is now, more than ever, needed because of the possible challenges we as humanity are facing and will face.

We've recently been developing projects that are directly related to the development of tourism potential, especially in terms of the development of urban culture, such as the Urban Intervention project. The project includes several activities aimed at reviving forgotten and abandoned buildings.

It's aimed at questioning spatial relationships through a combination of architecture and street art and the interaction of the renovated buildings and the local community. The best example of this is the oldest tram station in Osijek, built back in 1926, which became an open-air gallery with the Urban Intervention project, within which three academic artists have presented themselves so far.

Urban interventions have triggered a continuity of creative changes in space such as outdoor galleries, mosaics, painted benches or power boxes. These may be small things, but they also require organisation and a detailed implementation plan. Educational projects such as the Green School and the MOSS project (mobile solar station) have so far been successfully implemented in 11 primary schools throughout the City of Osijek.

Our first EU Golden Year project aims to achieve cooperation with the pensioners of the City of Osijek through the implementation of 200 activities, social and intergenerational programmes, and our good cooperation with partners will only further enrich the lives of pensioners who need special support due to the situation caused by ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

We've also launched some new projects such as Take Care of the Mask, My Opportunity and Urban Osijek, which we believe will achieve its results and leave a good mark on the the City of Osijek and the wider county,'' stated Darija.

Excellent cooperation with young people

The goal of the Zbrini project is to advocate for a city without disposable plastic, the My Opportunity project should further empower young people in terms of mobility and participation in Erasmus programmes, while the Green School project will introduce students from five primary schools to young farmers and permaculture food farming.

Darija believes that the consciousness of individuals began to change for the better after the pandemic struck, but that at the same time, the consciousness of the business and public sector is waking up too. New generations understand the benefits of renewable energy much better, and the awareness of young people, as Darija says, is most evident through the implementation of the MOSS project.

“Students and young people want to be involved in project activities and so far we've enjoyed some very nice collaborations, especially in schools that conduct civic education as an elective subject. We try to offer interesting and creative solutions to the youngest in our society through educational programmes, because that's the only way we can expect better generations to come after ours,'' stated Darija, adding that the Osijek PLANtaza Association's cooperation with local authorities is decent enough, but that it could be better, especially in terms of more concrete communication.

The Osijek PLANtaza Association is currently implementing the activities of the EU Golden Year project, and will participate in the Osijek Summer Night, where they will organise a Dance for pensioners along with numerous other events. They also carry out programmes of emotional development and planting a therapeutic garden in the yard of the local retirement home, outdoor exercises, and even computer literacy workshops.

"In any case, we have a working summer and autumn ahead of us, as well as a celebration of our seventh birthday, which we hope will be possible," concluded Darija Walter.

For more, follow Made in Croatia.

Friday, 23 July 2021

Zagreb Company Pri Suncu Delights Lovers of Traditional Ice Cream

July the 23rd, 2021 - The Zagreb company Pri Suncu is definitely a hit among all those engaged in a constant and often losing battle with a sweet tooth. This father and daughter team are all about Italian ice cream, sorbet and more.

As Ivan Tominac/Poslovni Dnevnik writes, Nina and Mario Saric are a father and daughter team whose family business, the Zagreb company Pri Suncu, has firmly won over all the palates of Croatian confectionery lovers, and the focus of their business story is the production of original Italian ice cream. It all started while Nina was still in her teens.

She learned about the traditional way of preparing and producing the globally adored Italian type of ice cream, and her urge was so strong that after finishing her food technology studies, she decided to start a business with her father, and that's how the Zagreb company Pri Suncu came to be.

“About three years ago, when we started intensively preparing to start a business, a common realisation grew in us that told us that what we want to do is be authentic and ultimately produce and offer people a product about which they'll say: That’s it! Establishing a new philosophy and raising people's awareness of ''real'' original Italian ice cream, even if they call it ''craft ice cream'' is our business mission,'' said Nina's father and one of the co-founders of the Zagreb company Pri Suncu, Mario Saric

Passion and motivation were the key ingredients, and in order to bridge the whole path between which leads to success, they invested around one million kuna. In addition to their own funds, the CES self-employment support and a micro investment loan from HAMAG BICRO helped them greatly in getting their business up on its feet.

That amount helped them enter the market with even more confidence, and with a well-researched market today, they're ready to say what their main advantage is.

"The production and sale of ice cream is growing from year to year, but the vast majority of ice cream produced is industrial, which can't be produced with the technology and ingredients that produce good craft ice cream. We opted for the manual production of ice cream, during which we make the ice cream base ourselves, and then add other ingredients to it, depending on the flavours of the ice cream. As such, our ice cream has a much stronger flavour intensity and a creamier texture which also gives a lighter feeling after consumption. All of our milk flavours (except tiramisu) are gluten-free and egg-free, while all of our fruit sorbets are intended for a vegan diet, because they're produced on the basis of water,'' added Nina.

The inscriptions ''craft'', ''artisan'' or ''gelato artigianale'' on industrially produced ice cream mean nothing but are merely an enticing PR message to insufficiently educated customers. According to the pair, real ice cream is a miniature niche and as such represents an opportunity, but also a risk that has a focus placed on looking for professional staff.

''Here on the Croatian labour market, at least when it comes to ice cream, confectioners trained to prepare ice cream in the classic industrial way predominate, which is an important problem when it comes to employment in production. In addition, the sale of ice cream in Croatia has a strong seasonal impact, so for a small company like ours it doesn't matter whether we produce it in the winter or summer.

Finally, the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has brought additional uncertainty and oscillations to the market, making it difficult to plan for production volumes. For these reasons, we've decided to employ people in production according to our current needs, mostly for a certain period of time, until the market conditions allow us a different approach to this key premise for the development of any business,'' explained owners of the Zagreb company Pri Suncu.

For more, follow Made in Croatia.

Saturday, 17 July 2021

Croatian OptimoRoute Software Going from Strength to Strength

July the 17th, 2021 - The Croatian OptimoRoute software is gaining traction and attention, and with it some big ambitions indeed.

As Novac writes, the Croatian OptimoRoute software is a piece of route optimisation software already used by several thousand companies and is developing very strongly. The American investment fund Prelude Ventures invested a massive 6.5 million US dollars in the company last year, estimating that OptimoRoute has a great chance of conquering the global market.

"Our investors believe that we can, with a little luck, reach a value of one hundred million dollars, and they think we're not far from a billion dollars. We'd rather try something big and ambitious and see where that takes us, than play it safe in the European way,'' said Marin Saric, the co-founder and CEO of OptimoRoute, during an appearance on the show Entrepreneurial Mindset.

Croatian OptimoRoute software experienced rapid growth of one hundred percent during the coronavirus pandemic. In addition to food delivery companies and stores that receive goods from central warehouses, route optimisation is now needed by companies from thousands of different industries, including floriculture, house cleaning and yard maintenance.

"The whole world is changing! Route optimisation, which used to be interesting only to "geeks", has turned into a global mega trend. We rode that wave early enough and now we are trying to surf on it and see how far it will take us,'' said Saric.

"We want to be globally present. We want to gather the strongest engineers we can reach here in Croatia, and beyond if necessary, in order to bring them to Zagreb and create a new generation product. Not only do we want to create the best software, but we want it to be office software which is available to everyone at a very low cost. Bill Gates wanted to see a PC on every desk, and we want to see our software for organising a mobile workforce in every small company,'' revealed Saric.

Although the Croatian OptimoRoute software primarily targets small businesses, it is also used very successfully by large ones. Among their biggest clients at the moment is one pipeline passing through five states of the United States of America.

For more, follow Made in Croatia.

Wednesday, 14 July 2021

Croatian TheGepek Platform Allows Anyone to Become "Deliveryman on the Way"

July the 14th, 2021 - The Croatian TheGepek platform (TheBoot/Trunk) allows quite literally anyone to become a ''deliveryman on the way'', and the coronavirus pandemic is the one ''to thank'' for its creation.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Darko Bicak writes, over recent years, Croatia has experienced the expansion of various courier services, and the coronavirus crisis has raised this micrologistics to an even higher level. Today, delivery is organised within deadlines that are measured in hours or even minutes. Their added value came to light during the height of the pandemic when many people weren't leaving their homes and still needed to send and receive items, whether they be store supplies, food or even medicine.

However, the main disadvantage of these services is that they are mainly related to large cities, and the rest of Croatia, especially smaller settlements and villages, are left in the hands of Croatian Post and large suppliers whose delivery deadlines are often measured in days as opposed to mere minutes.

Noticing this issue, the Croatian TheGepek platform was launched last year, based on the principle that almost anyone can be a delivery person who can accept or deliver a package to a location they're already travelling to, for which they will, of course, receive a fee.

TheGepek, started by a brother and sister, Dario and Carla Ferreri, and subsequently joined by entrepreneur Kristijan Skarica who specialises in the development of startups, has entered into cooperation with the Croatian IT champion, Vodnjan's remarkable Infobip.

As Carla Ferreri explains, she sees joining the InfoBip Startup Tribe programme as the beginning of a fruitful and long-lasting collaboration for both participants.

“We're a small company which is only just developing its business, but we're growing and currently have about 2,000 customers. It's known what Infobip represents in Croatia and the world today, and our attachment to them through the Startup Tribe is a great thing in itself. Infobip announced competition for startups that they'd like to help, so we applied and soon they told us that we'd entered the programme and asked what we needed and wanted so that they could help us as much as possible. As they develop communication technology that is very important to us for expanding our delivery business, we've agreed that they make several of our programmes and tools available to us, free of charge,'' says Carla Ferreri.

She added that Infobip, through the Startup Tribe programme, has provided them with its own network of partners, investors and all other contacts, and therefore they expect that this will greatly help them in developing their business.

"Of course, this is a win-win situation, because with the growth and internationalisation of the business, we'll have the need to increase our use of Infobip's tools, so in this way we're developing rapidly, and Infobip is creating new customers and markets," noted Carla Ferreri.

The Croatian TheGepek platform was created back during the very height of the coronavirus pandemic last year when little was known, chaos reigned and all the shortcomings of the existing courier services came racing to the forefront.

"We came up with the idea one afternoon when it was necessary to deliver a package, some medicine, from Zagreb to the vicinity of Zadar quite urgently. The delivery deadline option we were given, from the post office to the distribution houses, was on average four days because there was a weekend ahead of us, that was just unacceptable to us. We solved our problem that day according to the principle of calling a friend, and the very next day the idea of ​​developing TheGepek was born,'' explained Carla Ferreri.

The Croatian TheGepek platform is based on the sharing economy, the so-called a carpooling cost-sharing model with the possibility of package sending flexibility that the current package distribution market doesn't yet offer. As it is based on a large number of non-professional vendors, the platform also has security options specific to similar systems and rating systems. TheGepek plans to include virtual currencies in its business in the coming period, but more will be known at the end of the month.

For more, follow Made in Croatia.

Monday, 12 July 2021

Former Rimac Engineer Tino Sturlic Builds Electric Solar Boat

July the 12th, 2021 - Former Mate Rimac engineer Tino Sturlic has mixed his obvious innovative nature with the desire to protect the environment, creating no less than a solar electric boat.

As Morski writes, Tino Sturlic from Zagreb is a former employee of Rimac Automobili and recently finished work on his boat, and the key modifications were the installation of solar panels and electric motors, writes rep.hr.

He bought the boat as a joint venture with his brother and sister two years ago, but he wasn't satisfied with the ''vibrations'' of the old Tomos 4 pente, so he immediately sent the boat to Zapresic, where he has a workshop. A lengthy restoration followed, followed by the design of the battery. The owner of Torp, who is also a former employee of Rimac Automobili, helped him out in his task.

He also installed a Battery Management System originally developed for an electric scooter that allows for the monitoring of battery status via mobile phone apps, as well as other data such as consumption and charging via solar panels.

The battery with a capacity of 110 Ah and a voltage of 48V can also be charged via a socket, but for shorter and occasional use of the boat it is enough to use tilting solar panels, which can be rotated laterally to make better use of solar energy depending on the sun's strength and position. In the strongest sunny conditions, they produce 500W of electricity per hour, while the boat at a speed of 3.2 knots per hour (5.9 km/h) consumes about 1kW. The range of the boat with a full battery at that speed is almost 16 nautical miles, and charging while driving increases this by up to 30 percent.

A necessary part of Tino Sturlic's system is the charging controller, which can be removed from the front of the ship together with the battery. It was developed by the Croatian company Infoton and then fully adapted to the aforementioned battery. In rare situations when the battery needs to be carried on the mains, it can be pulled out and taken away so that it doesn't have to bring electricity into the boat.

Unfortunately, the weakest link in the system was the old electric motor that was once used in Koncar's forklift and which still needs to be fitted with cooling to prevent overheating that occurs after an hour of sailing.

Tino Sturlic's unusual and impressive project worked for itself, but the interest and reactions of the public were positive, so it is possible that one day everything will result in a business project. The above example shows that the added value brought by innovative companies such as Rimac Automobili and the knowledge and experience gained by employees can one day see them start up their own new innovative companies. It's worth mentioning that Tino Sturlic was praised by his former employer, Mate Rimac, and he proudly pointed out that Tino, as well as some other former employees, had all started their own businesses, but not all of them have gone public yet.

For more, follow Made in Croatia.

Monday, 12 July 2021

Croatian Koncar Succeeds in Asia with Job Contract in Japan

July the 12th, 2021 - The Croatian Koncar company, which is very well known on a global scale for its expertise and high quality work, has succeeded on the Asian market as Japanese jobs are contracted.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Suzana Varosanec writes, the Croatian Koncar - Generators and Engines (GIM), owned by its parent company Koncar - Elektroindustrija, made a very significant step forward onto the challenging Asian market back in mid-May.

Following two entire years of continuous bidding and a tough negotiation process, the Croatian Koncar company earned a large contract over in Japan for the first time in its history. In this regard, the company, one of the components of the Koncar Group, pointed out that the delivery of the signed contract includes "the design, production and supervision during the installation of three generators for two different small hydropower plants."

The first phase of the project will be completed with the successful commissioning of a 5.2 MVA synchronous generator (240 min-1) at Shin Sakagami SHPP, they explained, while the second stage will be completed when the 5.2 MVA (240 min-1) synchronous generator is put into operation, followed by an asynchronous generator with a nominal power of 0.546 MW (366 min-1) at SHE Utsubo.

This is a contract that is a continuation of the Croatian Koncar company's highly successful cooperation with an Austrian turbine manufacturer, and over the next three years the two companies should justify the trust placed in them by Japanese consultants with their work. However, given the fact that this is the first time that Japanese investors have chosen a turbine manufacturer based in Europe, Koncar GIM will not only work hard to introduce itself, but is also expected to be a pioneer in opening the market to other European manufacturers.

This market is widely known for being very demanding, and the company got involved in a challenging project precisely due to typically demanding Japanese consultants and sky high expectations. The Austrian partner and the customer have recognised the competencies and capabilities of the Croatian Koncar, which are harder and harder to find, and decided they were by far the best choice for this kind of solution.

It also turns out that Japan is one of the markets in this segment that puts quality, technical solution and good communication in the first place, above all else. After the first contract on the Japanese market, Koncar could expect many other similar projects in the future, as well as more in various other areas of business. It's worth noting that the share of exports in total revenues from the sales of Koncar Group products and services with references to 130 world markets in the first quarter of this year reached 67 percent, and the most significant exports were realized in Germany, Sweden, the UAE and Austria.

Two thirds of the the Croatian Koncar company's total exports go to the EU market, which again speaks of the quality of their products and the solutions that they successfully offer in this also very demanding market. Koncar GIM has 375 hydropower plants built and revitalised across the world - individual products are adapted to customer requirements and form a niche market for the company's business, and 700 generators are produced and revitalised. Their business results are based on their own product development and production, cooperation with other companies operating under the wider Koncar umbrella, as well as numerous scientific institutions.

For more, follow our dedicated business section.

Thursday, 8 July 2021

Ruđer Bošković Institute Scientists: New Findings Regarding Isomers in Stereochemistry

July 8, 2021 - Ruđer Bošković Institute scientists made progress in stereochemistry that focuses on describing the order of atoms in three-dimensional space and compounds of equal molecular formulas.

While Ivo Andrić's Nobel Prize in literature is debatable whether it serves the national pride of Croatia, Serbia, or Bosnia and Herzegovina, the two Nobel prizes that are unquestionably for Croatians to brag about come from chemistry.

Croatian chemist Vladimir Prelog won the Nobel Prize in 1975 for his work in organic stereochemistry.

As the Ruđer Bošković Institute reported this week, Ph.D. candidate Natalija Pantalon Juraj and dr. Srećko Kirin provided new descriptions of isomers (focused on metal complexes), and their work is published in a prestigious Coordination Chemistry Reviews [IF2020: 22.3] journal, titled „Inorganic stereochemistry: Geometric isomerism in bis-tridentate ligand complexes“.

„The basis of the research was the analysis of structure from crystallographic database“, added IRB.

IRB explained in a press release that stereochemistry is focused on describing the order of atoms in three-dimensional space and compounds of equal molecular formulas, but that differ in the spatial order of atom placements are called isomers.

Prelog took an interest in organic stereochemistry (organic, being interested in compounds with carbon), and while organic stereochemistry has good ways of synthesizing the preferred isomers, the same isn't the case for inorganic (non-carbon compounds) chemistry.

While it is unclear if this work will be awarded and recognized among the international scientific community as much as Prelog's contribution, Pantalon Juraj and Kirin made some progress in advancing inorganic stereochemistry.

„Analysis of data presented in this paper shows trends in coordination properties of various ligands (ligand being an ion or molecule 'functional group' that binds to a central atom to form a coordination complex), thus answering the question of which ligand to choose and design a system to get a wanted isomer“, says IRB regarding the relevance of the research.

The detailed analysis also revealed stereochemical preferences that vary on various factors, and these findings are important for developing new functional coordinating complexes and also new selective catalizators to speed up the reactions.

This research was funded thanks to the Croatian Science Foundation as part of the project „Minimal Artificial Ensims“ (IP-2014-09-1461 and DOK-2015-10-2072), and "CAT Pharma" (KK.01.1.1.04.0013).

Learn more about Croatian inventions & discoveries: from Tesla to Rimac on our TC page.

For more about science in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Thursday, 8 July 2021

Croatian Surf n Fries Opening in New European Locations: Croatia and UK

July the 8th, 2021 - The Croatian Surf n Fries company, which has since expanded to numerous locations across the Republic of Croatia, Europe and the rest of the world, is set to open its doors in more locations across the country and in the United Kingdom.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marija Crnjak writes, although a good part of the total of 54 locations in the world where the Croatian Surf n Fries fast food chain franchises operate couldn't even be opened due to the measures put in place owing to the pandemic, Andrija Colak's project has far from gone stagnant.

In the meantime, a mobile facility has been opened on the island of Rab, a fixed store is being opened in Osijek, and a contract has been signed for opening a location in Brighton, UK, and it will be the Croatian Surf n Fries' first fixed location in the UK, Colak revealed on Tuesday.

"Throughout the pandemic, the number of franchises didn't fall, but there was no significant growth, and the biggest challenge is that due to the closures and lockdowns we couldn't realise the contract we had at bars at stadiums in France and the UK, which was signed almost a year ago," said Colak.

As is already known, back in September 2020, a contract was signed with the company Rapid Retail, and Croatian Surf n Fries food was set to be eaten at famous European stadiums, from Old Trafford in Manchester to the Stade de France, the French national stadium in Paris.

As the pandemic has so far banned gatherings in stadiums, the deal sadly hasn't come to fruition. Meanwhile, the Croatian Surf n Fries team is still developing its innovation of a machine that throws fresh french fries out into a cardboard box. So far, the only vending machine of the sort has been installed in Plodine in Rijeka.

"In addition to all of the above, we're working on the transformation of the menu, we're strengthening our chicken segment, which is increasingly popular in the fast food business, with the stagnation of beef. In addition, we're expanding the menu from "snack" to "full menu", introducing breakfast, while our focus is still on quality ingredients and local suppliers. We're also working on the introduction of retail products in the offer such as crisps, which will do well on the back of the already well-known brand of our fries,'' pointed out Andrija Colak.

For more, follow our business section.

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