Monday, 31 May 2021

Mate Rimac Soon to Reveal New Electric Croatian Supercar

May the 31st, 2021 - Mate Rimac is set to reveal yet another more than likely jaw-dropping electric Croatian supercar on social media, which will also boast a new name.

When it comes to Croatian entrepreneur Mate Rimac, there aren't many who have a bad word to say. The owner of the internationally recognised Rimac Automobili, headquartered in Sveta Nedelja near Zagreb, has placed Croatia on the global automotive map, providing it with a position that would never have occurred otherwise in this country with next to no automotive output globally.

This Livno-born car lover boasts dogged determination and a true love for cars. Having busted the myth that ''nothing can be done in Croatia unless you belong to a certain party'' quite successfully indeed with his strong combination of grit and an inventive mind, this 34 year old entrepreneur has even schooled the government in how to attract foreign interest following his massive cash injection from no less than German car giant Porsche.

Having been compared to both Elon Musk and his fellow countryman Nikola Tesla, Mate Rimac, who is currently busy creating his new campus, has made it more than clear that when it comes to creating the iconic Croatian supercar brand, he isn't planning to stop at ''just'' the Concept_One and Concept_Two. 

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, Mate Rimac's company Rimac Automobili announced that on Tuesday, June the 1st, 2021, they will present their brand new electric Croatian supercar which will be made in series production on social media.

The new Croatian supercar, hitherto known as the C_Two, will also be given a special new name.

Mate Rimac recently posted a video on his personal Facebook profile taken while testing this model out in Zemunik. He wrote that ''every day two world journalists test the production version of the car he designed, developed and produced right here in Croatia, in spite of everything.''

For more, follow Made in Croatia.

Sunday, 30 May 2021

German Die Welt Praises "Elon Musk of the Balkans" Mate Rimac

May the 30th, 2021 - The German Die Welt publication, which is highly popular among German readers, has praised Croatian entrepreneur Mate Rimac once again, referring to him as the Elon Musk of the Balkans.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the German Die Welt reported that ''Mate Rimac actually just wanted to be a successful professional auto-moto driver, but over time he became a symbol of hope for car manufacturers on the road to electromobility,''

The Berlin-based Die Welt looks back at one episode with which the success story of this much loved Croatian entrepreneur began. Mate Rimac's old BMW "troika" failed in one race and the engine "died", writes Die Welt journalist Thomas Geiger: "At that time, it seemed like the biggest possible accident that could happen, but in actual fact, nothing better could have ever happened to Mate Rimac...''

If it weren't for that technical problem, Rimac might never have come up with the idea to install the simple electric motor of a forklift in his car, instead of an expensive new engine. And so, writes the German Die Welt, Rimac's green "troika" became the well known "Green Monster", and Rimac himself became the "king of drifting". The innovative Croat's videos were watched by millions of people on YouTube, and later he became "the man who made the strongest sports e-car in the world, that is, an ardent supporter of electric propulsion".

"The Elon Musk of the Balkans"

"A skilful Croat with an almost shy smile hidden behind a thick beard is currently one of the most sought-after people in the industry," the German newspaper wrote in its article entitled "Visionary under voltage", emphasising that Rimac is only 33 years old, and that a lot has happened in his life in the past ten years alone. "Once an average student, and then an ingenious inventor" is now a partner and supplier of sophisticated technological solutions, from batteries to engines - he has become the "Elon Musk of the Balkans", writes the German Die Welt, as reported by Deutsche Welle.

The fact that this remarkable entrepreneur comes from Croatia gives this whole story an additional, special element, writes the Berlin daily. "On the colourful car map of the world, the former Yugoslavia has been a relatively white spot since the end of production of the small Yugo back in 2008, there are almost no automotive manufacturers there. Nevertheless, decisive development began right there: only 200 kilometres southeast of the headquarters of Rimac's company in Sveta Nedelja, a certain Nikola Tesla was born,'' notes the German Die Welt.

''Rimac is geographically closer to Tesla than he is to Elon Musk,'' writes the German journalist.

Regardless of the electrical engineering thanks to which he became famous, Rimac doesn't "insist" on changing the world for the better, at least not on the road, the article notes:

”Rimac's penchant for e-cars has its source not in environmental protection, but in the joy of driving, the taste that these cars give him,'' notes the journalist.

Regardless of all the successes that Croatian entrepreneur Mate Rimac has stacked up over recent years, and despite all the models he has developed and sold for high sums of money, "Die Welt" still notices one particularly Croatian problem plaguing the entire thing - the lack of skilled labour.

"Croatia isn't exactly the armpit of the world, but the outskirts of Zagreb aren't a magnet for experts from abroad either. That's why it isn't surprising that Rimac is currently planning a new headquarters, which is a bit reminiscent of Autostadt in Wolfsburg or a little more like Apple's headquarters in Cupertino/ And in those new headquarters, Rimac's Green Monster will of course get a place of honour,'' concludes the German Die Welt article.

For more, follow Made in Croatia.

Monday, 24 May 2021

New Rimac Project in Zagreb: Park, Square, and Robotaxis?

May 24, 2021 - A new Rimac project in Zagreb envisions a mobility center, self-driving taxis, a town square, and a park right on the Sava. 

The founder of Rimac Automobili is taking the first step towards realizing a 3.4 billion kuna project to develop and establish a network of electric self-driving taxis in Zagreb, reports Index.hr.

In 2024, Zagreb will become one of the first cities in the world where a robotaxi service will be available - the use of self-driving, electric taxis via an application. Sounds crazy, right? If we trust the entrepreneur Mate Rimac, it will soon become a reality, Index adds. 

Namely, the founder of Rimac Automobili is starting to build a park, square, storage, and charging station for electric, self-driving taxis, or robotaxis, as they are called, on the Sava - on a meadow across from the Zagreb "Stjepan Radić" Student Home.

The competition has been announced and the solutions of the architects are arriving, and the entire facility should be completed by the end of 2022. The robotics service in Zagreb should be launched by 2024. And right at the beginning of Jarunska Street, Rimac will build a base for robots, from where they will scatter towards the city and return to recharge their batteries.

The complex, officially called the Mobility Center - which includes a town square, a park, and an e-charging station - is only the first step towards realizing the 3.4 billion kuna Rimac project, announced in March this year, to develop and establish a network of electric, autonomous taxis in Zagreb.

As Rimac replied, the idea is that the Mobility Center on the Sava serves two purposes.

"The idea is to create such a center of autonomous mobility on the Sava that would have, on the one hand, a social role, a place where people will come to meet new technologies and talk to experts in a pleasant environment, and on the other, functional side, for charging, maintaining and cleaning robotaxi vehicles in an environmentally sustainable way," explained Rimac.

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

Wednesday, 19 May 2021

Friends of Croatia: British Embassy - Brexit an Opportunity to Deepen Already Good Relationship

May 20, 2021 - The fifth article in the series "Friends of Croatia: British Embassy", saw TCN reporter Ivor Kruljac sit down with the UK Ambassador Andrew Dalgleish and discuss all things regarding diplomatic relations between the UK and Croatia. Diplomatic relations are, overall, really good and developing well, with Brexit being a challenge, but also an opportunity for deeper bilateral cooperation between the two European nations.

The diplomatic relations between the UK and the Republic of Croatia were formally established on June the 24th, 1992.

Almost 29 years later, I found myself in front of the Ambassador's residence and being warmly greeted by Snježana Vukić, the British Ambassador's advisor for communications. If you're inclined to think in stereotypes, you would expect a cup of tea, but instead, the cup of coffee with the creamy flat white texture turned out to be a much better beverage during the interview—both for me and for the Ambassador.

''We can sit wherever you like'', said Ambassador Andrew Stuart Dalgleish as he welcomed me inside the premises. A warm, kind, competent communicator that evened out the serious conversation about diplomatic topics with occasional humorous remarks to ensure both had an enjoyable and informative talk. The pins of both British and Croatian flags on his left coat lapel turned out to be a visual clue to the notion the friendship the UK and Croatia has long since held is still going well.

 

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TCN reporter Ivor Kruljac with Ambassador Andrew Dalgleish © British Embassy Zagreb

Croatia and UK sharing western values

Andrew Dalgleish has served the UK as the Ambassador in Croatia since July 2016. He graduated with First Class Honours Degree in European Law at the University of Warwick, which included a year at Bordeaux University IV studying French Law. From 1998-1999 he worked in the Department of Social Security. His extensive knowledge of European law saw him work in UKREP (the United Kingdom Permanent Representation to the European Union) from 1999 to 2004, firstly as the Second Secretary for Social Affairs, and from May 2001 as a First Secretary for the Environment.

That same passion for the environment led him to DEFRA (Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs), where he was the Project Manager for the Climate Change effort during the UK Presidency of the EU, and he also represented the EU in UNFCCC plenary meetings. In his service to DEFRA from 2006 to 2008, he participated in the creation of the Office of Climate Change (2006), and moved to be the Deputy Head of Group, in Environmental Land Management too. From 2008 to 2011, Dalgleish continued working as the Head of the European Union Strategy Department, where he held preparations ahead of the Prime Minister’s European Council briefings and assisting other ministries in shaping deliverable policies; coordinating influencing strategies and lobbying efforts within the EU.

''I should tell you, I'd never been to Croatia before I arrived here professionally, and I'm one of those rare British people who hasn't been here on holiday“, Dalgleish began as I asked him about his impressions of the country, and of course, of Croats.

''What struck me the most was the warmth of the people, the welcome, general sense of friendliness. Croats are really proud of their country, and quite rightly so, and they also really want you to love the country too,'' said the Ambassador, adding that the Croats he met took him to lots of places and restaurants where he discovered various new dishes.

He continued that one of the delights of Croatia in his opinion is its variety, and he finds it impossible to pick one location that fascinated him the most.

''I remember going to Vučedol near Vukovar, and it was mindblowing. The walking that I can do in Žumberak, not far from Zagreb is fantastic. You go to Brijuni and you have Roman ruins, or you go to Poreč and you've got the basilica there, or Vis, which is a paradise,'' he stated in his list.

His description of Croats as warm and friendly seems to demonstrate to what we could call Croatian values. But, what are British values? When asked this question, Dalgleish argued that these are habits we may consider to be national characteristics, but they aren't values, per-se.

''Brits are very proud of the idea that we believe in fair play, that will we do the right thing even if we lose the game. Maybe that's why we're terrible at sports,'' the Ambassador said with a touch of humour as he was describing the national characteristics of British citizens.

While stating that Croats should be asked what the UK is most famous for in Croatia, as an Smbassador who frequently talks to Croats, he did manage to come up with some conclusions on the issue.

''Football, clubs such as Chelsea or Manchester City, but also the British sense of humour. Croats laugh at similar things as we do. So much British TV is here, and the cultural exchange is really, really important as well,'' said the Ambassado,r referring to cult shows such as Only Fools and Horses (Croatian: Mucke).

''The Royal Family is very recognisable here, too. I think lots of interest and affection is shown for the Royal Family, and of course our brilliant 'weather' “, the Ambassador added.

When it comes to joint values, the Ambassador noticed that Croatia and the United Kingdom share many opinions that are neither Croatian nor British values, but rather a Western, European, or even Transatlantic view of the world.

''This encompasses a wide range of things that we very often take for granted but which are the foundations of our societies", explained the Ambassador, citing examples the freedom of the media or the rule of law.

''The democracies we live in, embrace and find to be a really important foundation are what we need to protect and defend for the sake of our societies.''

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 Zagreb Pride, Ambassador Dalgleish with other diplomatic colleagues during Zagreb Pride © British Embassy Zagreb 

Things could be better at the commercial level, but there have been improvements...

The values ambassador Dalgeish described are the basis of diplomatic relations between Britain and Croatia, but how good is this relationship, actually? Where is it at its best, and where is it at its worst, where can things be better?

''The starting point is that diplomatic relations are really, really good, and I feel lucky that the cooperation our two countries enjoy is overwhelmingly positive,'' said the Ambassador. He added that as in any close relationship, two countries might disagree about something, but to the British Ambassador, being able to disagree and be fine with that is also a sign of a strong relationship.

''One great expression of our cooperation is NATO where we're really good, very close partners,'' continued the Ambassador, even referring to the recent DEFENDER-Europe-21 exercise in Zadar.

In addition to that, the recent visit of Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team to Croatia's Krila Oluje Pilots is also a good sign of cooperation and mutual friendship. 

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The Royal Airforce Aerobatic Team and the Ambassador © British Embassy Zagreb

''Croatia occupies an almost unique position in terms of expertise that it can give on Southeastern Europe, as well as comprehensive understanding of what is a very complicated situation in this region,'' he said.

''All of this is very good, strong and positive, and it makes a global impact, and it's not just about how our two countries get along,'' he said.

The Ambassador also added that both Croatia and the UK are members of the Global Media Freedom Pledge and stand for freedom in the media. He also works very closely with both the Croatian Government and Croatian president Zoran Milanović to promote awareness of the threat of climate change.

''You'd expect me to say I communicate the most with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and it would be true, it's where diplomatic relations are grown in a formal way. But I also communicate with all branches of the Government, with Parliament and with Pantovčak. Just today, I've been to the ''Dr Fran Mihaljević'' Clinic for Infectious Disease in Zagreb where I talked with its director, Professor Alemka Markotić, about what we can do about COVID-19“, added the Ambassador.

However, as expected, there are areas in which British-Croatian cooperation could be much better.

''Where I'd like things to be better, speaking very frankly, is in commercial relations. The UK has been less present on Croatian market and less accessible due to simple geography, especially when compared to the likes of Austria or Germany. When I arrived here, this is where I said I'd want to try to make a difference. I have made a difference, I hope. A small difference, but its a difference in the right direction, and the commercial relationship is better for that today,'' said the Ambassador.

These small steps saw trade in goods between the United Kingdom and Croatia increase by about 10% in the past few years, a good indicator of how things have been advancing, regardless of the concerns in the past that Brexit might affect it negatively.

''We've also seen investments from the Croatian side into the UK increase in the past few years – for example, Mate Rimac has just opened his research & development centre in the UK – we did help facilitate that through our Department for International Trade (DIT)“, added Ambassador.

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UK Minister Greg Hands and Ambassador Andrew Dalgleish with Mate Rimac in Rimac Automobili © British Embassy Zagreb

In addition, the Ambassador used every opportunity to facilitate business and trade contacts between the UK and Croatia. When UK State Secretary in the Ministry of International Trade, Greg Hands, visited Croatia last month, the Ambassador hosted a dinner for him with several leading Croatian business figures for both sides to explore how they might further improve business connections between the two countries.

On top of that, the recent confirmation from the Justice Ministry that British citizens may purchase property in Croatia only further benefited the development of trading between the two European countries.

Leaving the table for face to face conversation

The cooperation Ambassador Dalgeish described sounds great, but when it comes to diplomatic relations with the UK, the elephant in the room screams out in need of a special mention. Brexit remains a hot topic for the British public, and as Croatia is a member of the EU, what changes can Croatia expect in diplomatic relations with the UK as the European island nation which chose to step away from the bloc?

Dalgleish sees Brexit both as a challenge and as an opportunity to deepen diplomatic relations between the UK and Croatia.

''With 28 members states as it was before, you had so many people around the table that when ministers came together for a council meeting, there were just too many people to have a meaningful conversation one on one. So you'd say ''see you in Brussels'', and you would, and you'd wave, and you'd smile, and you might even say hello. But you don't have a meaningful conversation all the time,'' said Ambassador Dalgeish from his own recollection as he spent a lot of time in Brussels.

''We aren't at that table anymore. That means we're going to have to make more of an effort but also that we will have the opportunity to build a more meaningful relationship with Croatia and I think that's quite exciting for me in the job that I do,'' said ambassador Dalgleish calmly but optimistically.

''Whereas before, our bilateral business might have been conducted during these convenient moments in Brussels at these meetings, that doesn't happen anymore. Now, we will hold them in London, and we will hold them in Zagreb. I think that's quite the opportunity to build something more meaningful than what we had in Brussels,'' stated the Ambassador.

As the UK has a massive impact on the world and can boast of very strong diplomatic relations with other big players on the geopolitical stage, I wondered how important the relationship with Croatia actually is, from the UK's point of view, and in regards to the country's interest in global affairs. 

''We look at Croatia as a global partner, and not just from the point of what we get from this bilaterally, but in what we're doing together to make a difference; Croatia sits as a partner,'' the Ambassador pointed out.

Already having mentioned the importance of Croatia's knowledge on Southeastern Europe and the instances of good cooperation through NATO, and issues such as climate change or COVID-19, the British Ambassador's claims are evidently backed up.

''I was sent here by the Foreign Secretary with a very serious mission to deepen the strength of the cooperation that we enjoy. It's a very important mission for me, and I think that's a reflection of how seriously we take the relationship with Croatia,'' confirmed the Ambassador.

The British Royal Family has always been very welcome in Croatia

The Ambassador already mentioned cultural exchange, and the British Embassy as an institution plays a significant role in the cultural promotion of the country. But, given the UK consists of four nations: England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, is it possible to represent all these cultures equally? Being Her Majesty Queen Elisabeth II's Ambassador and representing the United Kingdom of Great Britain And Northern Ireland, Dalgeish shows his dedication to the job by equally representing all of the UK's four nations.

''We will proudly fly the St. George's Cross when it's St George's Day for England, but also the Saltire (Scottish flag), when it's St. Andrew's Day. I wouldn't say there is one element of the four nations that is dominant,'' said the Ambassador.

Culture is heavily linked with history, and the UK has been known in the past as a vast empire with colonies that are sovereign independent countries today. As Croatia was never colonised by the UK, are there any differences between the UK's relations with Croatia compared to other countries?

''The UK has a very long list of diplomatic relations, both with the countries who are part of Commonwealth, who were previously colonies, and with countries who were not colonised. So, there's no difference in forming a relationship with Croatia in comparison to such countries. There's nothing I can do about what happened in 1600's or 1700's, but I want to see what we can do in 2021,'' said the Ambassador, stating that the Ambassador's job is to look ahead, not backwards, to work on building the future, while acknowledging all the sensitivities of the past.

As the Ambassador already mentioned, his regular cooperation with the official bodies of the Republic of Croatia is the formal level of communication, while cultural exchange also has a key element in non-formal communication, particularly in education.

''I love going to schools. Talking to the kids about what they think about the UK, and what can they teach me about Croatia, and going to English lessons and causing chaos,'' said the Ambassador on his experiences with the school system in Croatia.

With the mention of the school system in Croatia, I couldn't help but recall my experience in education. Croatians seem to be quite talented when it comes English, but it is mostly pushed towards the American version of English.

''Oh yes I know, it's tragic,'' Ambassador Dalgleish joked in response when I shared my recollections.

He continued by saying that he is happy to see Croats speaking English so excellently, and he doesn't mind what version they learned, nor does he have any intention to have British English compete with American English.

''I don't hear too many American accents when talking to Croats, maybe it has something to do with British TV shows, maybe it doesn't, I don't know. But either way Croats should be very proud of how well they speak English,'' he concluded.

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Ambassador Dalgleish on the Royal Wedding Party in Split © British Embassy Zagreb

As also already mentioned, the Royal Family is a big part of the of the fabric of Britain as it is a parliamentary monarchy.

The Royal family, particularly Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla seem to be very fond of Croatia indeed. Their last visit back in 2016 (following the Prince's earlier visit in 1996) saw the meeting with former Prime Minister Tihomir Orešković, former President Kolinda Grabar Kitarović, for whom Prince Charles highlighted his particular interest in the Croatian economy, as well as an interest in investing in Croatian youth. They also attended the commemoration of the 400th anniversary of the death of the famous English writer and poet William Shakespeare at the Croatian National Theatre (HNK) in Zagreb.

''Their Christmas card even had a photo of them with the members of a folk band from Osijek“, said Ambassador Dalgleish referring to the photo the British Royals took with the dancers of the HKUD 1862 ensemble.

And as Glas Slavonije reported, Osijek is very special to Prince Charles as his Great Grandfather Franz von Teck was born there.

Most recently, however, the Royal Family suffered a tragic loss as the much-loved Prince Philip passed away. Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenković expressed his deep condolences to Queen Elizabeth II publicly on Twitter, but as the Ambassador pointed out, he also sent condolences through official channels. Social media and overall technological progress now allows world leaders to communicate more directly, but it doesn't diminish the role of the British Embassy.

''Everyone who wanted to express their condolences, expressed them, from Pantovčak, to Parliament and the Government. Social media is an additional tool for us regarding public statements, but of course, embassies remain here for those sensitive issues that need to be discussed Government to Government, not over social media. We're also here for our citizens, and we can't be present in the whole country, so travelling, but also social media, are also very important here,'' explained the Ambassador.

The always attractive Dubrovnik was found to be the best example when it comes to culture in the country, as Game of Thrones and Star Wars were filmed there.

In the UK, the film industry, in addition to private incentives, gets financial support from the state, as the British Film Institute (BFI) is sponsored by a Government department. Following the examples of Star Wars and GoT, could there be more promotion from the BFI of Dubrovnik or Croatia in general as a good filming location?

''I don't really need to say anything about Dubrovnik. Dubrovnik speaks for itself, and more Brits visit Dubrovnik annually than anyone else,'' said the Ambassador with delight.

But if Dubrovnik did happen to need a good word or two; the Ambassador stated that he is not the tourist bord, and promoting Dubrovnik is not part of his duties.

''If someone from the UK contacts me and says that wants to film anywhere in Croatia, but is facing problems, then I'm here. But in general, the less I need to intervene, the better“, said the Ambassador adding that he found out about UK film producers filming in Croatia after it had already happened. One of the more recent examples of that was the filming of the ''The Ipcress File'' series in Zagreb, and the fact that the ambassador didn't need to intervene again only proves the steady and good relations between the nations.

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Ambassador Dalgleish, other Ambassadors and Croatian officials attending a Mass for all victims of WW2 at the Zagreb cathedral © British Embassy Zagreb

British and Croatian Ambassadors: Swapping countries but closely talking and cooperating

Foreign embassies, of course, are in Croatia for foreign citizens, and the British Embassy is no exception to that rule.

In addition to the British Embassy and a consul in Zagreb, the UK has two additional consuls: in Split and Dubrovnik, to make sure it is present for UK citizens, not just visitors, but also for Brits who work and live in Croatia.

''We have an honorary consul in Dubrovnik, which isn't officially part of the embassy, but is there to assist our citizens visiting Dubrovnik,'' pointed out Ambassador Dalgleish praising honorary consul Mark Thomas for doing a great job.

When it comes to Croats, visas to visit the UK are luckily not needed, but Croatian citizens can contact the embassy to get more information about Great Britain should they need to.

''When it comes to trying to invest in the British market or getting their products or expertise into the UK, Croats need to contact the Croatian Embassy in London. I'm frequently in contact with the Croatian Ambassador there, Igor Pokaz, who is doing a brilliant job for our two countries to fund and nurture different ways of cooperation,'' explained the Ambassador when discussing his relationship with the Croatian Ambassador in London, Igor Pokaz.

Overall, British-Croatian diplomatic relations are good in general, and the Ambassador's assurance that Brexit can be an opportunity to deepen the already good relationship is a promise to the bright future of friendship. But, as it takes two to have a combo as good as fish & chips, Croatia also has to show that it is willing to continue to develop a good friendship with the UK.

If you're a British citizen or a Croatian citizen in need of information, here is how you can reach a British diplomatic mission in Croatia:

In Zagreb:

British Embassy

Adress: Ivana Lučića 4

Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Phone number: +385 1 60 09 100

British Council (for cultural realations):

Adress: Savska 32

Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Phone number: +385 1 48 99 504

More info on British Council official website.

In Split:

British Consulate

Adress: Obala Hrvatskog narodnog preporoda 10/III

Phone number: +385 1 60 09 100

In Dubrovnik:

British Honourary Consulate

Address: PP 454

Phone number: + 385 1 60 09 100

For all the latest news about the British Embassy straight from the source, visit their official website. You can also follow them on Facebook, Youtube, FlickrInstagram and Twitter (the British Ambassador is on Twitter and Instagram too).

To read more from the series "Friends of Croatia", follow TCN's dedicated page.

For more about UK - Croatia relations, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Monday, 26 April 2021

Mate Rimac Races C_Two against Porsche Taycan (VIDEO)

April 26, 2021 - Rimac C_Two against Porsche Taycan - which is faster? Mate Rimac races to find out. 

Mate Rimac published a video of the race between the Rimac C_Two and Porsche Taycan Turbo S on the runway of the airport in Nova Gorica. The C_Two he drove was one of only five prototypes, Rimac said, and announced that he would invite journalists to test it in the coming weeks. Rimac C_Two will not be the official model name, though Rimac said it will be announced soon.

 

"The car is not finished yet, there is still room for improvement," he says.

Despite a poor start, Rimac C_Two overtook Porsche and was the first to cross the finish line.

"Of course, not everything is accelerating," said Rimac and announced significant progress in the car's performance in the next few weeks.

The Bugatti Chiron currently holds the record with 9.4 seconds for a quarter-mile, while Rimac was just under 9 seconds. 

Rimac C_Two is an electric hypercar presented in 2018 at the Geneva Motor Show. ‘A car brought together with technology', as some have called it, has seen a lot of hype in the automotive world.

According to Rimac, it reaches a speed of 415 kilometers per hour, develops a power of as much as 1914 horsepower, and reaches 100 in less than two seconds, so it is currently one of the cars with the highest acceleration in the world.

The C_Two is unlocked by the face recognition system, and in just half an hour it will charge 80 percent of the battery that drives it.

For the sake of humor, a fire extinguisher has been added to C_Two with the inscription "if driving uphill, put out the fire" as a reference to the famous Grand Tour crash when Richard Hammond was behind the wheel of Rimac's Concept One.

Rimac Automobili previously announced that they need about eight weeks to produce each prototype, which is twice as fast as the previous production process. In full operation, the factory will be able to produce up to four prototypes per month. This means that the entire batch of 150 should be produced in three years.

For more news about everything made in Croatia, be sure to follow TCN’s dedicated page.

Monday, 26 April 2021

Croatian Scam Detected as Fraudster Seeks Donations in Rimac's Name

April the 26th, 2021 - The latest Croatian scam has been detected as donations are sought and false financial advice about investments from Mate Rimac is given on fraudulent websites.

Few have become more famous (at least for positive reasons) in Croatia over the last few years as Livno-born entrepreneur Mate Rimac. Having attracted not only the attention of automotive giants including Porsche, but their money in the form of enormous investments too, all eyes have been on Rimac for some time now.

As the entrepreneur continues to make impressive business moves and dispell theories that succeeding in Croatia is impossible, such as with his latest Rimac Campus project, unfortunately some not so respectable eyes have been watching him and hoping to take advantage in some way or another.

Scams via apps or texts have become somewhat commonplace, and although a Nigerian prince wanting your bank details and informing you of the untimely death of your hitherto unknown relative are typically obvious lies, not all of them are so transparent.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, dangerous fake news in the current era of social media is unfortunately rife, and scams also are. Businessman Mate Rimac himself warned about this epidemic of sorts on his Facebook profile.

''We hereby appeal to everyone not to fall prey to fraud,'' N1 also reported when discussing the latest Croatian scam which is asking for donations in Mate Rimac's name.

To be more specific, someone has divised a Croatian scam to trick people into investing money in a start-up company, in the form of cryptocurrencies. Of course, the entire thing is completely and utterly fake, as is Mate Rimac's apparent ''advice'' on making such investments that this particular Croatian scam is using in its attempt to fool would-be investors or cryptocurrency fans.

“People, don’t fall prey to these stupid scams. They're constantly using the identities of public figures - unfortunately that includes me too,'' said Mate Rimac last year. These particular ads lead to seemingly trustworthy and normal-looking portals, however these are very much fraudulent sites regardless of their more professional appearance.

For more, make sure to follow our lifestyle section.

Sunday, 25 April 2021

International Automobile Federation President Jean Todt Visits Rimac Automobili (PHOTOS)

April 25, 2021 - The president of the International Automobile Federation Jean Todt visits Rimac Automobili.

Sportske Novosti reports that the president of the International Automobile Federation, Jean Todt, arrived at the World Rally Championship Croatia Rally, which is being held in Croatia this weekend. The first man of the FIA, whose decision was crucial for Croatia's entry into the WRC calendar, shared his first impressions.

"Maybe we should ask people who have been involved in the organization and implementation of the rally from the beginning, but according to what I heard from the participants of the race, the impressions are good, and everyone is satisfied. In Croatia, we won a very demanding competition, an uncertain race that requires the creativity of the team and the driver. The weather is great, the fight on the track is open, and first impressions are good, but we need to wait for the end of the race for the final grade," Todt said.

"This season, some legendary rally races such as Greece and Kenya are returning to the WRC calendar, but Croatia, along with Estonia and a new race in Finland, further enriches the World Championship, and I think that this year we will enjoy an interesting season despite the problems brought on by the pandemic. Croatia has so far been known in the world as a tourist country, and from now on, it will be a country that hosts the WRC. It’s just a new step in the history of car racing and a good reminder of the first club founded 115 years ago."

Emphasizing the great efforts of the rally organizers and the Croatian Car and Karting Association, Todt also recalled the recently deceased Mayor of Zagreb, Milan Bandić.

"I visited Croatia several times on the occasion of the WRC race, and Milan Bandić was one of the people who always supported the whole project. He put a lot of personal effort into making it happen in the end. Unfortunately, he is no longer with us, and I think that in the end, this rally should be dedicated to him," said Todt, who on Saturday had the opportunity to visit the plants where Rimac cars are made and take a short test lap in one of his prototypes in Sveta Nedelja.

"I really appreciate people who can push the boundaries, and Mate Rimac is one of them. I was impressed by the acceleration achieved by his cars, but even more by the vision and passion behind everything he has done in just 10 years. It was necessary to have the guts to start developing an electric hypersport car when electric cars were just exotic. I was also introduced to his plans and future projects, and you have to respect and support such things."

To follow the latest sports news in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

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Saturday, 17 April 2021

Rimac Campus Project Moving Forward, Sveta Nedelja Mayor Signs Contract

April the 17th, 2021 - The Rimac Campus project, which will work to further showcase what Croatia can offer to the automotive world through its most impressive entrepreneur, Mate Rimac, has taken another step towards fruition as the Sveta Nedelja Mayor, Dario Zurovec, signs on the dotted line.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Suzana Varosanec writes, the signing of the appropriate contract for the future Rimac Campus in Sveta Nedelja between CEO and founder Mate Rimac and Sveta Nedelja Mayor Dario Zurovec will start the wheels turning on a very significant cooperation.

With their signatures on the contract, the Rimac Campus project will officially be off the ground and firmly on track for 2023. Their new headquarters, with a capacity of 2,500 employees and at location only sixteen kilometres away from Zagreb, will cover 200,000 square metres of land in total.

The planned investments in the Rimac Campus project have been announced in the amount of more than 200 million euros - in the form of the construction on the new location which is expected by the end of the year, and its completion is planned for 2023, while on the other hand the size and ambitions of the new Rimac Campus project are so large that according to general estimates, it is set to be among the largest of its kind in all of Europe in terms of its various industries.

However, given the company’s rapid growth, the location is designed so that it can expand over time while still blending in with its natural environment. In the long run, the new location will, as stated, accommodate over 2,500 employees, which exceeds the current number of employees by more than 100 percent, and is therefore going to be divided into two different areas.

The first is the company's headquarters building, where the main functions, management and research and development centres will be located, as well as the offices of Greyp, a company for the production of electric bicycles, which was also founded by Mate Rimac.

For more on Mate Rimac and other Croatian entrepreneurs, make sure to follow Made in Croatia.

Thursday, 15 April 2021

Croatian Businessman Mate Rimac Talks Plans with Bloomberg

April the 15th, 2021 - The wildly successful Croatian businessman Mate Rimac is going from strength to strength, and he sat down with Bloomberg to discuss not only his plans going forward but his concerns.

As Novac/Bernard Ivezic writes, reports claim that Rimac Automobili is set to produce a maximum of 100 vehicles per year. After his company announced its highly detailed plans for a new campus, which will include the first car factory in Croatia, Croatian businessman Mate Rimac told Bloomberg that his focus in this segment will remain on small series vehicles.

Bloomberg writes that Rimac has stated that cars with his name on them will always be sold in small quantities - meaning less than 100 units of them per year - to avoid competing with manufacturers who are customers of his company.

It's worth noting that Rimac Automobili's core business isn't actually the production of electric vehicles, but the development and production of components for electric vehicles. The technology of this Croatian company is thus incorporated into the Aston Martin Valkyria and Koenigsegg Reger models.

In addition, Rimac Automobil's largest partner, Volkswagen, has been trying to consolidate Bugatti through this particular Croatian company for a long time. After Croatian businessman Mate Rimac rejected the possibility of transferring the majority ownership of Rimac Automobili to Volkswagen or Porsche, in exchange for Bugatti, the Germans presented a new plan.

Bloomberg recalls that back in March, Herbert Diess, the CEO of Volkswagen, proposed that Porsche enter into a joint venture with Rimac and thus take over Bugatti.

As such, Volkswagen, or Porsche, would de facto give up most of its ownership of Bugatti only if the well-known French manufacturer of internal combustion engines took over and modernised the most successful European manufacturer of technology for electric vehicles. Rimac Automobili thus found itself in a somewhat unenviable position, because Porsche is, after Rimac, individually the largest co-owner of Rimac Automobili and a company that raised its market valuation to the status of close to 1 billion US dollars.

Bloomberg also reports that, although Croatian businessman Mate Rimac has already stated once that he is not inclined to go public through the SPAC, he is still, at least theoretically, thinking about it.

''It wouldn't be a good feeling for me, that while everyone is collecting heaps of money in this way and may not have as many things to show for it, in the same way as we do, that we're left behind without capital, so of course we're still looking into this possibility,'' explained Mate Rimac.

SPAC is when company is created and has the obligation to take over another company and de facto sells the shares of that other company through itself. Rimac told Bloomberg that he has a high opinion of companies like Lucida or the company Rivian Automotive in which Amazon has invested, but also that he is suspicious of how much SPAC can be used by other startups for electromobility.

Late last year, Mate Rimac told the Financial Times (FT) that frequent use of SPACs could harm the long-term prospects of the industry in which it operates.

''The managers of such specialised companies (SPAC) don't bear the same responsibility for the potential growth prospects of the company as managers who raise money through an initial public offering (IPO) in stock markets do, which raises fears,'' said Mate Rimac. He explained that a lot of money can be obtained today for companies that don't have any product to speak of and that it scares him.

''When we list shares on the stock exchange, I want to show the numbers, I want the shares to be traded on the basis of facts,'' Rimac told the Financial Times at the time.

Now for Bloomberg, he pointed out that no other company in the field of electromobility can boast of making a profit for five years. Back in 2019, Rimac Automobili had revenues of €23 million and a profit of €1.4 million in total.

For 2020, Rimac Automobili pointed out that they have achieved strong growth and that they expect even stronger expansion this year. However, the result for 2020 has not been revised yet, so it hasn't been made public yet either.

For more on Croatian businessman Mate Rimac and other local entrepreneurs and their products, make sure to check out our dedicated section.

Tuesday, 13 April 2021

VIDEO: New Rimac Automobili Campus Presented with Sports Facilities, Farm Animals, and More

April 13, 2021 - The new Rimac Automobili campus was presented on Monday, set to open in 2023. 

Index.hr reports that the manufacturer of electric hypercars and propulsion systems for electric cars, Rimac Automobili, presented the project of its new technologically advanced headquarters, which includes a test track, accommodation facilities, and a museum.

According to the statement, Rimac Automobili was created with a vision of creating exciting electric cars and propulsion systems for electric vehicles. In just ten years, they have grown from a garage project to a company that already employs 1,000 people. Today, the company develops and manufactures its own cars and technology and electric drive systems for many global car manufacturers. Today, it is one of the prominent companies on the rise in the automotive industry, transitioning to the electric future.

In line with its status as a strategic partner to large companies such as Hyundai, Kia, and Porsche, Rimac wants to gather all its employees and functions in one unique location. The striking complex, designed by the famous Croatian architectural office 3LHD, will embody all Rimac values. The new complex will be a base for research, development, and production. It will enable the company to grow from the production of prototypes and projects in small series to large-scale production of high-performance electric powertrains and battery systems for many global automotive companies.

 

The new location, based on the idea of creating the best possible working environment for employees from all over the world, is located just a few kilometers from the current headquarters of Rimac Automobili and is located on a plot of 200,000 m2. In comparison, the built area will reach about 100,000 m2. It is expected to be completed by 2023. The look and impression left by the new complex are the results of long deliberation. Mate Rimac wanted the new headquarters of his company to embody the character of the brand and the character of the employees. The spaces are designed to be friendly, open, and warm, with added elements of entertainment. Simultaneously, in line with the company’s status as a technology leader, they will be modern, illuminated, and inspired by the natural environment.

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Unlike most automotive industry locations, where high fences and levels of secrecy are set up, the Rimac Campus will be open to the public, and the interaction of visitors, guests, the curious, and employees are desirable and welcome.

Speaking about the exciting plans, the CEO and founder of the company, Mate Rimac, said: "Only 10 years ago Rimac Automobili was one man in a garage. Since then, we have grown to about 1000 employees, entered into strategic partnerships with Porsche, Hyundai Motor Group, and other important partners. We work with the biggest names in the automotive industry. But what we have remained committed to is the development of our business in Croatia. We are proud to have stayed here and that this new location will become our long-term home."

"With the rapid growth came problems with space, which we 'patched' with many improvisations, so we ended up in more than 10 buildings in 6 cities in Croatia. The working environment and cooperation of teams are essential to us, so we decided to make a big step and build our long-term home - Rimac Campus. We want to create a space that best reflects our brand and our ambitions. We work with leading world architects to build a campus that fits into Croatia's natural beauty while uniting every aspect of Rimac Automobili. The project will create the best possible working environment for our employees and enable visitors and the general public to enjoy the space and socialize with Rimac Automobili employees. The campus will also contain some unexpected elements, such as an animal shelter, a hairdresser, a veterinary clinic, and growing our own food. Still, we have never been conventional, so the campus reflects our approach, which is different from most. The campus is our springboard for planned growth for the next decade and beyond, as it strengthens us as hypercar manufacturers and Tier 1 suppliers of electric drive components and vehicle systems to major automakers.”

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3LHD has already designed several significant Croatian and international projects, including the Grand Park Hotel and Hotel Lone in Rovinj and the Hotel LN Garden in the Chinese city of Guangzhou. Using their rich experience in creating spectacular buildings and complexes, often integrating spaces with nature, the architects drew inspiration for the campus's design from several sources, including the shape and movement of Rimac's hypercar - C_Two, as well as speed, described from Rimac Automobili.

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Thus, the main building's design focuses on how the four key groups will enter and move around the site. For example, employees will naturally strive to get to their jobs as quickly as possible. At the same time, at the other end, visitors are likely to want to soak up the experience as long as possible and stay in impressive common indoor and outdoor spaces.

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Of course, in line with the brand’s focus on striking design, innovation, and sustainability, the new complex will feature many smart and unique features. Among them are the "urban swamp" and meadows and the garden on the roof of the restaurant. An additional element of the complex will be accommodation facilities. Instead of a classic hotel to accommodate visitors and new employees, a series of individual “capsules” are envisaged that will blend in with the forest environment.

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Given the brand’s commitment and passion for automotive projects, the site will also have many facilities that will allow visitors to immerse themselves in the full experience of exciting cars and Rimac Automobiles. Among other things, customers will be able to view and choose their Rimac car's specifications in a special configuration room, and there will also be a museum and bar. As part of the tour of the site, visitors will have the opportunity to tour the production. Given the scope of Rimac's work for other automotive companies, several rooms are also planned for customer projects, which will be available only to employees working on a particular project.

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One of the key values ​​of Rimac is the well-being and education of employees. That is why a playroom, a gym and a sports center, a restaurant, and even a kindergarten with a meadow with domestic animals are planned. In line with the sustainability orientation, on-site organic food production is also envisaged, and an abundance of greenery to enjoy for both employees and visitors. Satisfying the company's desire for multi-purpose and adaptable spaces, the site will also have an auditorium, conference hall, and training rooms. Given the company's rapid growth, the location is designed so that it can expand over time while still merging with its natural environment.

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In the long run, the new location will accommodate more than 2,500 employees, which exceeds the current number of employees by more than 100%. Therefore, the site is divided into two different areas. The first is the company's headquarters building, where the main functions, management, research, and development will be located. The offices of Greyp, an electric bicycle company, were also founded by Mate Rimac.

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This production facility will be connected to the production facility by a large glazed restaurant subtly embedded in the landscape overlooking both sides of the campus. At one end, there will be retail space and a nursery. On the other side, there will be a reception and a museum. Opposite them will be production and test facilities, which include design and prototyping. At the back, there will be an entrance to the heart of the site, a production plant with machining, composite production, paint shop, production of batteries and electric drive parts, vehicle assembly, and a quality control laboratory.

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The new campus's size and ambitions are huge, which makes it one of the largest buildings of its kind in Europe, not only in the automotive industry. The planned financial investments in the project exceed 200 million euros. Construction on the new location is expected to begin by the end of the year, and completion is planned for 2023.

You can read more about the new Rimac Automobili campus HERE.

To read more about business in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

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