Wednesday, 16 February 2022

Boeing and Airbus Parts Being Delivered from Jakovlje Production Plant

February the 16th, 2022 - Parts for the cabins of commercial aircraft are already being sought and delivered from the Jakovlje production plant located in Zagreb County, putting the business zone of this municipality firmly on the aviation map.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Suzana Varosanec writes, back at the end of pandemic-dominated 2020, preparatory work began on a new construction site in one of the business zones of the Jakovlje Municipality in Zagreb County. Despite the global health crisis that was often cited as the reason for many investors to abandon projects, this January saw the beginning of production in the FACC Solutions Croatia plant, which is already delivering the final parts of the cabins of aircraft such as Airbus, Boeing, Bombardier and several others. This was confirmed by a member of the Management Board of FACC Solutions Croatia, Matija Feric.

“Back in January, we conducted test production and started serial production and deliveries. The increase in production will take place gradually and in 3 to 6 months we expect to achieve the planned volume of production for this year,'' says Feric of the Jakovlje production plant's capabilities.

At the moment, the company has 130 employees, by the end of the year they intend to significantly increase that number, and in the context of further growth in production, there will be about 400 production workers in the first of three phases.

Despite the classic pain felt by employers which is typical of the Croatian labour market, which is reflected in the lack of would-be workers with the necessary qualifications and skills, that was not the case here at all.

''I can openly say that we found people very easily and we had about 250 open applications. If we show that people can expect normal working conditions and mutual respect between management and employees, our existing workers will be ambassadors for further employment because their recommendations that conditions are good here mean more than traditional methods of employment," he said.

The project of building the Jakovlje production plant, with a total value of about 35 million euros, adjusted to market conditions and the decline in production for the needs of the aviation industry in the coronavirus crisis, will be implemented in three phases. In the first phase, the main hall - the central part of the production process - was built in the amount of slightly more than 10 million euros.

The contractor was Strabag, the first shovel was driven into the ground back in March 2021, and the project is expected to expand. From composite fibers, the Jakovlje production plant is now completing semi-finished products that are normally produced in nearby Austria and delivering them to the parent company, the Austrian FACC.

FACC includes four more production facilities and one technology centre in Upper Austria, and the company is one of the world leaders in equipping certain internal parts of aircraft.

Following the past two years which were packed with unprecedented and great challenges, the situation in the industry is showing clear signs of the beginning of market recovery, so according to these sources, a return to pre-pandemic levels is expected in a short period of time.

The projections show a return to the state of 2019 during 2024, but Feric believes that this is realistically achievable as early as 2023, which is supported by the completed order books from various airlines. The fastest growth is expected in the segment of short and medium range aircraft ("single-aisle" planes such as the A320).

“Starting the recovery of the aviation industry will affect the business of all suppliers. FACC is ready to firmly support the plans of its business partners, so that accelerated business growth and market development can be expected,'' concluded Feric.

For more, check out Made in Croatia.

Tuesday, 15 February 2022

Croatia's Viktor Lenac Shipyard Busy With Saudi King's Yacht

February the 15th, 2022 - Croatian shipyards might have been struggling significantly for the past few years, since long before the global coronavirus pandemic emerged and caused even more issues, but the Viktor Lenac shipyard has its hands full at the moment, mostly with the ''doing up'' of a yacht owned by no less than the Saudi royal family.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, docking capacities at the Viktor Lenac shipyard have been filled until the month of May, there are now more than 10 ships in that shipyard, and employment is extremely high, the Rijeka-based shipyard revealed.

Board member Sandra Uzelac said that all docks and berths were filled and that now, unlike in the previous half of the year, the Viktor Lenac shipyard's employment is high. Last year, he says, the business was affected by high freight rates, so shipowners used that time more for navigation than for overhaul, and the coronavirus pandemic also negatively affected it.

Therefore, it is expected that the Viktor Lenac shipyard's business roundup for the year 2021 will turn out to have been successful and with a profit, but less so than in 2020. On Thursday, a passenger ship - a luxury yacht which is 147 metres long, sailed into the Viktor Lenac shipyard for overhaul and refurbishment.

It is a large yacht owned by a foreign client, with which the Kostrena shipyard signed a contract for the overhaul and refurbishment worth more than 20 million euros. It is a yacht used by the Saudi royal family.

The complexity of the contracted works is also indicated by the fact that it is planned that the ship will remain in the Rijeka shipyard for one entire year, because the deadline for the execution of all of the works is 12 months.

According to Sandra Uzelac, these are very specific works, and several Croatian and foreign subcontractors will be engaged in order to get it all done. Similar, but smaller jobs of that kind have already been done at the Viktor Lenac shipyard, said Uzelac.

For more, check out our business section.

Tuesday, 15 February 2022

Green Cakes: Bruno Peric's Food Intolerance Leads Him to Create Healthy Sweets

February the 15th, 2022 - Bruno Peric, a former basketball player, decided to let his intolerances to certain food lead him down an entrepreneurial path, which saw him create Green Cakes, which are healthy desserts.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marta Duic writes, the Zagreb company Green Cakes headed by athlete Bruno Petric is engaged in the development, production and sale of healthy desserts. They have been operating since the spring of last year, they currently have three employees, and their production plant is located in Brezovica.

According to Bruno Peric, the owner and director of Green Cakes, they have chosen the sign "healthy & sweet" for the slogan, and currently they have 12 cakes, cookies, brownies, but also a catering offer that includes desserts.

"Our goal is to promote a healthy diet, but at the same time prove that healthy can be sweet and delicious without needing to feel guilty. Our desserts are also adapted to people with diabetes, gluten or lactose intolerance and everyone who likes to enjoy healthy and fine flavours, and some of our desserts are also suitable for vegans. My intention is to develop this kind of business in Croatia, to prove that this is possible with our business model and, ultimately, to ensure the availability of healthy sweets to the general population.

As a professional athlete, I have a need for a healthy diet, and thus for healthy desserts. From personal experience of lactose and gluten intolerance, the idea was born that something should be done in terms of the wider availability of healthy desserts. The idea was born and matured during the period of my playing basketball in Germany,'' explained Bruno Peric.

Although they have been in business since the spring, the design and development of these recipes, research into the market for the supply of raw materials, but also the potential for the sale of healthy desserts began, as Bruno explained, much earlier.

Today, Green Cakes products are available through web shops and social media, as well as with HoReCa partners with whom they cooperate, and Peric points out that they also plan to open their own retail outlets. They recently published the book "Health has a new taste", and they're currently working on new products and innovating their existing ones.

“The past period was spent in a detailed acquaintance with the specifics of the market of healthy sweets and our in-depth acquaintance with this type of business. We worked on the development of new products, invested in production equipment and accessories, but also in product testing and analysis and in the education of key users,'' says Bruno Peric.

New partners

As he claims, they procure the raw materials for their sweets exclusively from proven and reliable suppliers, and they also cooperate with several domestic family farms. ''Negotiations are underway with a significant number of new HoReCa partners, so we expect an increase in the number of cafes and restaurants with our products soon,'' said Bruno Peric.

According to him, they plan to establish themselves as the leading producer of healthy sweets in the wider area and to complete the range in accordance with the needs and requirements of the market.

“The market reactions to our products have been positive and they give us incentives to work even harder on new products and innovations. We often receive messages from customers that our healthy desserts confirm our slogan that "health has a new taste". We plan to organise a Green Cakes centre where all development, promotional and educational activities would take place where experts would be involved, such as nutritionists, formulators, diabetologists, gastroenterologists, microbiologists and others,'' concluded Bruno Peric.

For more, check out Made in Croatia.

Sunday, 13 February 2022

Innovative Croatian CannaPlast in Finals of European Competition

February the 3th, 2022 - The innovative Croatian CannaPlast idea has found itself quite rightly in the finals of a large European competition as the only entry from all of Croatia.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Lucija Spiljak writes, Krizevci locals Mario Jembrek, Luka Heljic and Valentino Gudlin, founded the startup CannaPlast back in November last year, and their main idea is the production of hemp plastic.

Although the Croatian CannaPlast startup is only a few months old, they are the only Croatian representative to compete for the top prize among the top 19 candidates in the European Cross-KIC New European Bauhaus - 2021 New European Bauhaus Ideation Awards, where European startups present sustainable and inclusive climate change solutions and answers to pressing environmental challenges.

“Our expectations are high, our idea is very disruptive with the potential to directly and significantly help in the fight against climate change. We looked at the ideas of other teams and they're really great, but we believe that our team will be the winner. Once we get the necessary financial injection, we'll go on to develop a prototype. We're in very close cooperation with the company Bio Blok, which is engaged in the production of building materials from hemp, and has ambitions to expand its product range. With their help, we intend to place our ''plastic'' straws in cafes and beach bars on the coast, and if everything goes according to plan, we'll do it just in time for the tourist season. Bio Blok could also help us a lot in processing only the stem and making capsules. In addition, we intend to engage in crowdfunding in order to provide sufficient funds for the sustainable continuation of business,'' explained Mario Jembrek.

Last November, the Croatian CannaPlast startup won first place for their idea at the 2nd Krizevci Hackathon entitled "Local startup, global sustainability" on sustainable and green startup ideas, organised by the Youth Council of Krizevci and the energy cooperative KLIK. The hackathon was the reason for founding the startup in the first place.

“Our startup is currently in its very early stage of business. Our first goal is to make a prototype of a ''plastic’''capsule and ''plastic'' straws and glasses, as a demonstration product through which the customer would get an idea of ​​the quality of the material and how it feels and sits in the hand, ie whether it has the same characteristics as real plastic does. We're currently mostly involved in promotion and networking - from people from the Faculty of Agriculture in Zagreb who help us develop the science behind making hemp plastic, to enterprises and business people who can provide us with the necessary funds to establish a production line. It will also be important to change the legal framework on what materials are allowed for packaging,'' said Jembrek, who works as an electrical engineer for solar power projects.

Heljic has many years of experience in developing business on foreign markets and has recently been in charge of developing sustainable construction through their construction section in the Cooperative for Ethical Financing. Gudlin is a student at the Faculty of Agriculture in Krizevci, and Jembrek says that his knowledge of plants, especially hemp, gives the Croatian CannaPlast startup the necessary technical and scientific foundations for the development of their ideas.

Their target customers are plastic bottle manufacturers, such as Atlantic Grupa (Group), Jamnica and Coca Cola, to which they want to offer their hemp capsules, which they will be able to use with their existing machinery.

“This would require very little investment in equipment modernisation, and will bring with it significant benefits in terms of reducing plastic pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. Our solution would thus be available to the general public in any store, and would function identically to plastic with a very important difference - our bottles would be CO2 negative and biodegradable,'' concluded Mario Jembrek.

For more, check out Made in Croatia.

Friday, 11 February 2022

GlobalLogic Developing Most Advanced Self-Dosing Insulin Regulation System

February the 11th, 2022 - The Croatian branch of GlobalLogic, a well known company, has become a well recognised brand here in the City of Zagreb. It now has a truly remarkable project to boast of...

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Sergej Novosel Vuckovic writes, more than 100 software engineers are employed here in Zagreb in the Croatian branch of the American company GlobalLogic, specialising in digital engineering and product design, especially in the automotive industry and communications, as well as in finance.

GlobalLogic, owned by Japan's Hitachi Group since last year, recently announced that it has surpassed the figure of more than 10,000 digital engineers in its centres here in Europe (Croatia, Germany, Poland, Slovakia, Sweden, the United Kingdom and Ukraine), as well as outside of Europe in Israel, which is 70% more than in 2019, the record pre-pandemic year.

According to GlobalLogica Hrvatska/Croatia, this is a consequence of both organic growth and mergers and acquisitions, and they consider their very impressive five-digit number of employees to be a turning point.

This "tone" is definitely set to continue this year, offering 1,600 vacancies across Europe. Here in this country, in particular, they constantly have dozens of job advertisements on the market, which already sets them aside from the majority of other employers.

"Our employment potential is even greater, because in the last two years we've entered many technological areas and we're intensively looking for employees in the field of embedded solutions, Cloud and Big Data," explained director Vladimir Kosanovic. Here they work on dozens of projects from the automotive, telecommunications, technology and healthcare sectors, mostly for clients from across the pond in the US and closer to home in Germany.

“Some of the bigger and more interesting projects are the migration of business to the cloud, ie the transformation of monoliths into micro-service architecture in Azure for a leader in the external workforce management sector. As part of that, we have several projects in which our teams have a very important role in coordinating 26 teams at the global level,'' explained Kosanovic. That's not all, either. After recently establishing a healthcare vertical, the Croatian GlobalLogic team is now facing a few new challenges.

“They're working on the development of the most advanced self-dosing insulin regulation system. This is a very interesting and demanding project that involves certification according to the most demanding criteria. The device should help diabetics when they go to regulate their blood sugar levels by automatically applying insulin. With the help of experts from the group and our knowledge in the field of installation solutions, we're successfully building this vertical as well,'' revealed the head of the Croatian branch of this impressive company.

However, we shouldn't neglect what is most characteristic of GlobalLogic, which is Croatian as much as it is global, and that is the development of software for the automotive industry.

“We're traditionally strong here and we're working on safety projects and the development of various functionalities of the vehicles of the future. In addition, in the financial industry, we work for the largest and fastest growing B2B electronic payment network in the world, Bottomline. We're also working on the development of software for small household appliances,'' added Kosanovic.

GlobalLogic also touched on pay in their transparency. Kosanovic was not exact in numbers, but noted:

"Salaries depend on the technology and experience of individual engineers, but in general it can be said that GlobalLogic offers an excellent salary, it's very competitive in the field of IT, but we look at employee satisfaction holistically, taking into account various tangible and intangible benefits. Not least, we take into account responsible and competent managers, a factor that is extremely important to potential employees, according to our experience, and confirmed through research,'' said Vladimir Kosanovic, concluding that this year, GlobalLogic will continue to invest in its blossoming Croatian subsidiary.

For more, check out Made in Croatia.

Tuesday, 8 February 2022

Croatian Products Popular in Foreign Spar Stores in Italy, Hungary...

February the 8th, 2022 - There are quite a few Croatian products which have become much loved by foreign buyers shopping in Spar stores in the nearby European Union (EU) nations of Italy, Hungary and Slovenia.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marta Duic writes, the fact that the Spar retail chain is an important partner for domestic producers and the placement of their products on the shelves of many other European Union countries is best evidenced by the fact that despite the global coronavirus pandemic which continued throughout 2021, Croatian products, ie their manufacturers, generated more than 106 million euros in turnover through the Spar sales network alone in the nearby countries of Italy, Austria, Slovenia and Hungary.

The total turnover of Croatian products in Spar stores grew last year as well, which brought domestic producers an increase in revenue of as much as six million euros compared to 2020.

The biggest increase in terms of exports of Croatian products was recorded in Austria, where the first four exporters enjoyed as much as 40 percent higher revenue in 2021 compared to the record year of pre-pandemic 2019.

The data showed that the neighbouring Italians are loyal to Croatian products such as the much loved truffles and white cod, the Hungarians love Croatian ice cream and water, and the Slovenians have discovered Croatian dried meat products under the label Dobro (Good), which is sold by Zito, whose turnover in 2021 was twice as high as it was during the year before.

Although the list of major exporters is still dominated by large Croatian products and their producers such as Atlantic, Podravka, Cromaris, Dukat and Vindija, small producers include lip balms made by Vimi, Dobro and New Bakery, one of the largest European baklava factories, located in Donji Stupnik.

For more on Croatian products, producers, companies and exports, make sure to check out Made in Croatia.

Monday, 7 February 2022

Croatian King ICT's System to Protect NATO From Cyber Attacks

February the 7th, 2022 - The Croatian King ICT company's system will protect no less than NATO from the ever-present threat of cyber attacks.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Darko Bicak writes, although the Croatian defense industry has a relatively modest range of deliveries to its clients within NATO, the IT sector has been strongly involved in a number of projects and tenders of the North Atlantic Alliance for many years now, the most recent example being the Croatian King ICT company's contract. This Zagreb-based company delivered and implemented to NATO's Communications and Information Agency (NCI) an advanced solution in the field of cyber security with their entire IT infrastructure, worth a massive 7.8 million euros.

The biggest project so far

As reported by King ICT, the company has delivered its largest international project to date in the field of cyber security in full, within the budget and ahead of schedule.

“The SIEM (Security Information and Event Management) solution is a key system for more successful defense against cyber attacks and will be used as part of the services that NCI provides to NATO. More than 40 experts have worked on this project, and that included the delivery and implementation of an advanced SIEM solution in the field of cyber security with a complete state-of-the-art IT infrastructure. Like all major NATO projects, this one required a very high level of expertise and commitment in areas such as project management, implementation and management of all aspects of quality, logistics, support, demanding testing and knowledge transfer,'' they explained from the Croatian King ICT enterprise.

They added that SIEM is an area of ​​computer security, where software products and services combine security information management and security event management. They provide a real-time analysis of security alerts generated by applications and the network hardware. In its announcement, they pointed out that the delivered SIEM system will significantly raise the security level of the organisation and contribute to the protection of NATO's critical data and communication system.

An extremely successful year for this Zagreb company

The Zagreb-based IT company noted that last year, still marked by the coronavirus pandemic, was extremely successful and that they expect revenue growth of more than 10 percent than the year before, when their revenue amounted to 636 million kuna, which could bring them closer to their record results from back in 2018, which stood at a very impressive 817 million kuna.

“Our overall business focus remained on the complete digitalisation of key customer business processes through the delivery of our own solutions and professional services on the most modern technological platforms of global manufacturers. We're locally present over on the Benelux market and we're strengthening our position here on the regional market. We've increased our capacities and abilities to provide services within the XaaS business model and the number of services on our own platforms that we offer to the market,'' they stated from the Croatian King ICT company.

For more, check out Made in Croatia.

Saturday, 5 February 2022

Replenishment of Croatian Aircash Wallet Via Paysafe Available in 20 Countries

February the 5th, 2022 - The replenishment of the Croatian Aircash wallet via the Paysafe platform is now available in twenty different countries, but ironically NOT here in Croatia, where the Aircash app was created and developed.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Ivan Tominac writes, the Croatian fintech Aircash and the multinational online payment platform Paysafe have concluded a cooperation that allows Aircash wallet users to top up their wallets directly with cash in more than twenty countries across Europe, from Austria to Sweden.

When they want to add cash to their account, Croatian Aircash wallet users choose the "cash" option as a top-up method. This generates a barcode that can be taken to a nearby Paysafecash payment site to fully complete the transaction.

As Udo Müller, the CEO of Paysafe's eCash department, explained, the partnership between the Croatian Aircash application (app) and the Paysafe platform gets to the very heart of the problems faced by very many migrant communities. This approach allows people to digitise their money and transfer it much more easily, which helps them support their families back at home.

“This is especially useful for those who live abroad and who want to send money to friends and family at home. By enabling them to top up their accounts with cash through a reliable solution such as Paysafecash with a wide network of payment points, we make this service more accessible to our customers,'' said Hrvoje Cosic, President of the AirCash Management Board.

Although the Republic of Croatia is currently not among the countries covered by the cooperation, the international Paysafe survey from 2020 shows the state of awareness regarding cash. As many as 50 percent of respondents still believe that cash is the most reliable form of payment in a crisis, and 72 percent said they would be worried if they could not access cash.

For more, check out our dedicated business section.

Friday, 4 February 2022

Osijek Company Orqa Begins Developing Chip Design Ecosystem in Croatia

February the 4th, 2022 - The Osijek company Orqa has begun developing no less than a chip design ecosystem right here in Croatia. Namely, Orqa, Osijek's FERIT and Zagreb's FER signed an agreement on cooperation in the project of designing a specialised chip for unmanned systems.

Complex chip design such as this hasn't existed in the Republic of Croatia so far, and it is on the basis of an initiative through which the rapidly-growing Osijek company Orqa d.o.o. further seeks to advance first-person (FPV) and remote reality (RR) technologies.

The goal of the Memorandum of Understanding signed by Orqa, the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Computing and Information Technology in Osijek and Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing in Zagreb, is the joint work of experts, engineers and academia on research and development of technologies of strategic importance for digital and a more resilient European Union (EU).

As such, for the implementation of this initiative, the signatories of the Agreement will also promote a key strategic instrument for the implementation of the EU industrial strategy - Important Projects of Common European Interest (IPCEI).

“We intend to design a chip specialising in unmanned systems such as drones, vehicles or vessels, with the ability to upgrade to autonomous functionalities. This extremely complex project is the first project of this type in all of Croatia, we're among the first in the world, and currently there aren't enough engineering capacities for such a design.

Although this sort of staff is currently lacking here in Croatia, through this project we're trying to build capacities and train engineers in order to start the development of the chip design ecosystem in Croatia in accordance with global trends. Cooperation with faculties as staff generators plays a key role in this. Through this project, we intend to achieve a symbiosis of commercial needs on the one hand, and academic knowledge and research on the other. In addition to the aforementioned faculties, the support of the Ministry of Regional Development and EU funds is extremely important for us in order to pave the way for the further development of this attractive industry,'' said Srdjan Kovacevic, co-owner and CEO of the Osijek company Orqa. 

As a world leader in the development of video glasses for drone pilots and as a leading regional company in the drone industry, Orqa is rightly considered a leader in Croatian modern technology and innovation. This isn't a surprisie at all when one considers the research, development, and prototyping of devices in the field of first-person view (FPV) technology, remote reality (RR), video signal transmission and radio communication, and the production of electronic components and devices the company engages in - the most famous of which are video goggles for FPV drone pilots. Collaboration with STEM studios is a great opportunity both for young engineering hopefuls and for the entire technology sector. The signed Agreement is unique on the territory of the Republic of Croatia, and with it the City of Osijek and Osijek-Baranja County will be more strongly positioned in the demanding IT world.

"This agreement will further strengthen the cooperation between the two leading Croatian faculties in the field of chip design, to which the Osijek company Orqa is adding additional value. Here in Croatia, the development of the semiconductor industry is lagging behind other branches of electrical engineering, and the planned scientific research activities in cooperation with the economy will represent a significant step towards the development of microelectronics in this country. The implementation of scientific research will ensure the transfer of the latest knowledge in the economy, but also in study programmes, which will provide domestic students with additional competencies necessary for the labour market in this area,'' said Tomislav Matic, the Dean of FERIT.

In addition to FERIT, the great potential of the Osijek company Orqa was also recognised by the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing from Zagreb, which has long been positioned as one of the leading Croatian educational institutions in the STEM field.

"FER is committed to an economy based on knowledge, innovation and openness to global talent. The strength of any economy lies in the high-tech sector whose progress and competitiveness is impossible without knowledge and scientific research where the academic community plays an extremely important role. This agreement created the basis for the further development of Croatian competencies in the field of chip design and verification. The agreement is also key to connecting the Croatian academic community and the Croatian economy with major European players in the semiconductor industry and ultimately creating a consortium to apply under the Important Common European Interest (VPZEI) mechanism,'' said Gordan Gledec, FER's Dean.

For more, check out Made in Croatia.

Thursday, 3 February 2022

Designer Marlena Dapcic Working on Most Luxurious Yacht Built in Croatia

February the 3rd, 2022 - Croatian designer Marlena Dapcic is working on the designing of the most luxurious yacht ever to be constructed here in Croatia.

As Jutarnji/Novac writes, after graduating from the Faculty of Industrial Design in Venice, young designer Marlena Dapcic has already developed her career abroad working for other companies.

However, a few years ago, Marlena Dapcic decided to focus on her design studio and on Croatia, within her own company A.D. Group, with which she's carried out several notable projects and brought elements of ''real'' yachting into domestic shipbuilding practice. Yachts Croatia spoke to her in Split, where she is working on two new fifty-metre yacht projects and putting together some ideas for the future.

''My colleagues in Italy are famous designers and engineers, but nobody here knew me. At the beginning I was ''the one who chooses the colours'' and they called me in for interior design, although I started from an office where we did everything for smaller boats, and in the meantime I upgraded my knowledge, in Croatia we started all over again, from the beginning. In a few years, I managed to become recognisable, both as a designer and an engineer in one. The difference between a classic designer and my office is that we make a complete product. This way is quite similar to the mentality that the Croatian people have learned, that an engineer who has completed shipbuilding works on the design and everything else.

However, working in this way, the exterior design of existing projects hasn't progressed, so I started working on the interior and exterior design, with maximum effort to work with Croatian engineers who have a lot of experience, such as Vinko Strizic and Branko Vukovic. But they lack what I learned about design and materials in Italy,'' explained Marlena Dapcic.

''When I initially came to the shipyard with my construction plans, I wasn't accepted, partly due to the ignorance of the workers and my colleagues. It's paradoxical that at the same time, we have a profession which is done abroad for a lot more money, and they're much more valued over there, who wouldn't want that? Here in Croatia I have to constantly fight, which benefits me because I study, but it's very difficult to fight against the existing system, and the workers are older. I don't work as a classic designer, I had to give up that concept, but investors come to me and approach me as if a house is being built, not a ship, with all its requirements. Real designers often work for themselves and simply sell their concepts or work for a shipyard,'' added Marlena Dapcic.

''I was initially alone in A.D. Group, and since I only have two hands and one head, we had to increase the team, today there are four of us, there's my sister Helena who is an architect, one of my colleagues is an external collaborator and at the same time works for Fincantieri, and one of us is renderist who makes videos and renders,'' said Dapcic, who pointed out that it isn't a coincidence thay they're doing all this in Split, as two yachts are being ''born'' here under her supervision.

''On these two projects, we did the exterior and interior design, architectural plans and 3D renderings. The first yacht is ICY, and it's a new brand that will be heard about a lot more. The first yacht in the series is a fifty-metre mini cruiser, which should have the characteristics of a yacht, but it has fifteen cabins, and its own norms and rules of passenger ships, which are very strict. But the look will be at the level of yacht quality, unlike most existing ''winged'' mini cruisers. It can also be built as a yacht with six cabins, with an identical or similar external appearance.

On the other hand, the 46-metre yacht for which we're starting construction has a completely opposite logic. They opted for the concept of a real yacht with six cabins, but with masts and a slightly more classic look. We conceived it as a yacht ''from head to toe'', but with conservative and simple solutions in exterior design because we don't want to take risks with complicated shapes, but instead adapt to the construction possibilities that exist in steel and aluminum.

Marlena Dapcic added that it will be the most luxurious yacht built in the Republic of Croatia so far.

''It's characterised by clean exterior lines and a wave motif that is repeated both on the outside and on the inside, as two units which are connected by design. Inside, we used onyx with backlighting and lots of innovative materials, with the presence of proven materials like alcantara and fabrics that give the yacht a feeling of warmth, a ''clean'' design with white surfaces and gold details predominates. It's a yacht which weighs 499 tonnes, with a lot of space that we carefully arrange, and it's being built with a class for ''unlimited navigation'', for which the designer Vinko Strizic is in charge, by order of the investor,'' Dapcic stated.

For more, check out Made in Croatia.

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