Tuesday, 2 March 2021

Entrepreneur Mate Rimac Collects 130-150 Million Euros in New Investments

March the 2nd, 2021 - Croatian entrepreneur Mate Rimac keeps going from strength to strength when it comes to doing business responsibly and succeeding on the tricky investment front, going as far as to attract automotive giants like Porsche once again.

Rimac Automobili is a company that has done much more than just put Croatia on the automotive map, which is no small feat at all, but Livno-born Croatian entrepreneur Mate Rimac has shown that it is very possible to succeed and do well in Croatia if enough effort and know-how are employed.

Attracting investments left, right and centre, the always smiling protagonist of this shining Croatian business story even taught the Croatian Government a thing or two about how to attract massive investments from huge companies and as such bring the automotive industry within Croatia's borders.

As Novac writes, no less than Porsche should participate in a new round of financing for entrepreneur Mate Rimac's impressive company Rimac Automobili, in which the company should raise an additional 130 to 150 million euros, the company's founder Mate Rimac told the German publication Automobilwoche.

The funding should be completed in two to three months, and another round of funding is planned by the end of the year, entrepreneur Mate Rimac explained.

Porsche currently holds a 15.5 percent stake in Rimac Automobili, and that Porsche owned stake could increase to just under 50 percent in an agreement under which Rimac would take over Volkswagen's luxury brand Bugatti, about which we recently wrote.

Rimac Automobili, as well as Volkswagen, have not yet commented on this matter and this article will be updated as comments come out.

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Monday, 22 February 2021

Croatian Entrepreneur Mate Rimac Closer and Closer to Bugatti Takeover

February the 22nd, 2021 - Rimac Automobili, owned by Croatian entrepreneur Mate Rimac, has gone from strength to strength and it seems as if that run is far from over.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, Bugatti and the Croatian entrepreneur Mate Rimac are becoming closer than ever in their relations, with a company takeover from Rimac seeming closer to coming to fruition than ever.

"At the moment, we're thinking intensively about how to ensure the development of Bugatti in the best possible way. Croatian entrepreneur Mate Rimac could play a significant role in all of that because the two brands fit very well in a technological sense,'' Porsche's Oliver Blume told Automobilwoche.

The Croatian company Rimac Automobili and Volkswagen's supercar brand Bugatti are a fantastic couple in terms of technology, said Oliver Blume, Porsche's director for German Automobilwoche, Reuters reports. The statement reawakened hope that Croatian entrepreneur Mate Rimac's beloved company could indeed take over the gigantic Bugatti, which has, as Telegram writes, been being talked about for several months now and would mean an enormous amount for Croatia's place on the car map.

Namely, back in September last year, the British portal CarMagazine announced that the Volkswagen Group would hand over Bugatti to Rimac Automobili, in exchange for increasing Porsche's share in Rimac's impressive company headquartered in Sveta Nedelja near Zagreb.

Volkswagen is also the owner of the Porsche brand, which has acquired a 15.5 percent stake in the Croatian company over the years. Back in 2018, they bought a 10 percent stake, and a year later they purchased another 5.5 percent of it. Britain's CarMagazine then claimed that VW's management intended to increase that share to a significantly higher 49 percent.

“There are different scenarios with different structures that we're looking into. I believe that a decision on this issue will be made in the first half of this year,'' noted Oliver Blume.

For more on Mate Rimac, follow our dedicated section.

 

Tuesday, 16 February 2021

Mate Rimac BBC Profile Compares Croatia Car Innovator To Elon Musk

February 16, 2021 – In an admiring new business profile, the most prestigious of British broadcasters looks at Croatian car innovator Mate Rimac BBC comparing him to Tesla's Elon Musk.

In an admiring new business profile, the most prestigious of British broadcasters looks at Croatian car innovator Mate Rimac BBC comparing him to Tesla's Elon Musk.

The Mate Rimac BBC profile is titled 'The hypercar maker who was told to give up his dream' and was published earlier today, Tuesday 16 February 2021. In the article, which is part business profile and part a personality profile on Mate Rimac BBC journalist and business correspondent Theo Leggett describes Rimac automobiles as “some of the most exotic machines on the planet”.

Screenshot_170.pngThe BBC profile of Mate Rimac and his Rimac Automobili company, from earlier today © BBC screenshot

Direct quotes from the Mate Rimac BBC profile

“Rimac Automobili is best known for building ultra-exclusive electric hypercars,” says Mate Rimac BBC profile writer Mr Leggett.

“The Concept One, first unveiled in 2011, had a top speed of 354km/h (220mph). Only eight were ever made - and one was famously destroyed when the TV presenter Richard Hammond careered off the road during a competition in Switzerland.”

“Its successor the C_Two is even more extreme with a claimed top speed of 415km/h (258mph); able to accelerate from 0-97km/h (60mph) in 1.85 seconds. Due to go on sale this year, it's expected to have a price tag of €2m ($2.4m; £1.8m).”

1619px-Rimac_C_Two_20180929_DSC_8816_cropped.jpgThe rimac C_Two © Branko Radovanović

“The cars are by any normal measure extraordinary. But they form only one part of Rimac's business model. Increasingly the company is setting itself up as a technology supplier to other manufacturers, to help them build their own high-performance electric cars.”

Alongside the obvious similarity of them both building electric cars, it is this expansion of the company's field of vision that prompts the Mate Rimac BBC profile journalist to compare the Croat to Tesla's Elon Musk.

Further along in the Mate Rimac BBC profile, the journalist interviews David Bailey, professor of industrial strategy at Birmingham University.

"Mate Rimac is seen as a real disruptor," says Professor Bailey. "His company has come from absolutely nowhere, their products are really exciting - and they've developed a brand round the hypercars."

Rimac Automobili “Working and Living in Croatia” video, first published by Total Croatia News on 25 October 2020

Wednesday, 27 January 2021

Unique Croatian Tourism Experiences: Take the Rimac Tour

January 27, 2021 - Croatia has a number of fabulous and untapped unique tourism experiences, among them the Rimac tour in Sveta Nedelja. 

I will confess that I wasn't 100% sure who he was when I first met Mate Rimac a few years ago on the Nikola Tesla EV Rally in Porec. Something to do with cool electric cars, I had been told. And then I saw the Concept One.

Rather embarrassingly, young Rimac had heard of me and was very complimentary about TCN. Having recognised what a legend the boy was, I managed to get that all-important selfie, and it was only after sharing that on Facebook that I realised what a legend he  was when many people from my past who I had not heard from in years started messaging me:

"Is that you and Rimac? Do you actually know him?"

mate-rimac-ft_4.jpg

And no, I don't really know him. We have met briefly 3-4 times briefly and always exchanged a laugh. He comments occasionally on my wall (mostly about posts on Del Boy and Rodney, funnily enough), but the more I have followed the Rimac story, the more I appreciate what he does for Brand Croatia, and what an asset he is for the country's tourism. 

And I had come to that conclusion even before the release of THAT video about living and working in Croatia.

And it turns out that Rimac Automobili offer their own unique tourism experience to visitors to Croatia, one which makes for an excellent day trip out of Zagreb, to the company's headquarters in Sveta Nedelja, about 25 minutes from Zagreb city centre.  

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Rimac has kept things very local despite his rapid expansion, and the company is very much at home in the town named the best for the economy for the last three years running. 

I had the chance to finally visit the factory where all the magic a few months ago, and I was delighted to learn that there is an officially organised Rimac tour for car enthusiasts.  

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Details of the tour are in detail below, but I really liked the reception area where it all began, including a fascinating timeline of where it all started, and where it is today. young Mate looking more like Del Boy back in 2006 as a high school student winning national and international awards for innovation with the iGlove, before moving on to 'the Garage Phase' with his beat-up 1984 BMW E30.  

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2011 must have been quite a year - from setting world records to the launch of the prototype of Concept_One as the world's first all-electric hypercar at the Frankfurt Motor Show. 

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And so the years rolled by, with a growing team and increased success and international recognition.  

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The history of the company is beautifully recorded in this timeline, but that is only part of the fascinating tour, which needs to be booked in advance (and I suspect may not be currently available due to coronavirus restrictions).  

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The standard tour costs 225 kuna (30 euro - 10 euro for students), with a 50 euro premium tour including a test ride with the revolutionary Greyp bikes. Sadly, a ride in the Concept_One or C_Two is reserved for customers only. 

But here is what the tour includes, with photos from the official Rimac site - photography on the tour itself is restricted.  

rimac.JPG

History

Walk down the history line and meet the iconic Concept_One, our technology in other hypercars and our next generation, the C_Two.

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Machining

Explore of the process of various raw materials turning into molds that go further in the process or into finished parts used in the components or vehicle assembly.

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Composites

Learn about different composites used in hypercar production as well as the steps taken from mold preparation to a finished part.

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Paintshop

Grasp the complexity of our painting process and various methods used to create state-of-the-art hypercars.

rimac-tour_11.JPG 

Prototype Assembly

Watch all the parts come together in our prototype assembly area.

rimac-tour_1.JPG

Engineering

Meet the team behind the world's most advanced electric hypercars and EV technology, the brain of the operation.

One of my favourite questions in the tour FAQ is:

CAN WE HAVE A CHAT WITH MATE RIMAC?

Due to Mate’s busy schedule we can’t promise you will have a chance to meet him. Maybe, you will have a chance to see him working with some of our engineers or technicians.

Should corona not be an issue, tours are generally available Monday to Friday from 10:00 - 13:00. You are advised to check everything in advance in these uncertain times on the Rimac tour dedicated page.

And while you are there, why not make a day of it in Sveta Nedelja. The nature is beautiful and the lakes are magical. Check out the official promo video from the Sveta Nedelja Tourist Board. 

For the latest from Rimac and Sveta Nedelja, follow the TCN Rimac and Sveta Nedelja sections

Tuesday, 19 January 2021

A Very Cool Croatian Map with Mate Rimac C_Two Supply Update

January 19, 2021 - While some leaders have social media accounts suspending for allegedly inciting violence, others use it as an effective tool to engage with their audience, leaders such as the man behind the Rimac C_Two.

This has to be one of the coolest maps featuring Croatia that I have ever seen. 

A map of global car dealerships for Croatia's only car producer. There are more global dealerships for Rimac Automobilii than the number of cars that the company has ever produced. Think about that for the moment. 

And even though the number of dealerships is growing, this will not be the case for long, as the Rimac C_Two goes into production. 

The map was posted by CEO Mate Rimac on his latest Facebook post yesterday. In an age where leaders are being banned for allegedly inciting violence, Rimac uses the tool extremely effectively to update people on progress, as well as to clear up misconceptions and misunderstandings, as is the case in his latest post, which is published in full below.

You can follow Mate Rimac on Facebook.

Something I wanted to clear up for a long time. During an interview with our Head of Sales a couple of years ago, a journalist misinterpreted (mistakenly or not) that the C_Two is sold out. That was not the case and still isn't, but has been repeated in many articles as a fact.

While it is not unusual for hypercars to be sold-out before they go into production, that is usually only the case for established brands, like Ferrari. The C_Two has many 'firsts' - first all-electric-hypercar (globally homologated), first series-production car of Rimac (a new and still relatively unknown brand) etc. It is a completely new market (there are no competitors in production yet) and nobody knows how customers will really react. Customers are very interested in the car but want to see how things play out - they want to try it before committing and see reviews. We are fully in line with that and have never pushed customers to commit before trying the car. There are, of course, many who trusted us enough and liked the car so much to pay a deposit very early on.



So far, only a few customers had the chance to try the C_Two (like Nico Rosberg for example). That is the case for several reasons - while we have made lots of prototypes already, we need every second of them for development, testing and homologation. It is always difficult to squeeze in customer test drives as it impacts testing. Also, the car is still in development so we don't want the customer to experience glitches or some rough edges that will be improved in the production car. The COVID situation makes traveling hard so that is another factor that is slowing things down.

Let's not forget that we still didn't present the production version with the new name - which we will do soon. In parallel, there will be lots of independent reviews coming, from top journalists/YouTubers from all over the world. We are currently building 3 marketing/sales cars that will be used for unveiling the production car, media test-drives, events world-wide (they will go on a world tour, despite the situation) and customer tests.



Nevertheless, we are very happy with how sales are progressing. What I can say is that we are sold-out for at least the first year of production, which was our initial goal - that sales are always at least 12 months ahead of production.

I was never scared of not selling the cars - I am sure that there will be more demand than the 150-unit limit that we have set ourselves. What I am working day and night on is to make sure that the car is as perfect as possible - and that it (over)delivers everything that we have promised - acceleration, features, top speed, range... If we get that right (and there is no indication that we won't), I am not worried about selling 150 units. I am pretty sure that all 150 units will be gone soon - after we present the final car, there will be a bunch of independent tests available and customers will have the opportunity to try it. We'll see.



I really believe that many people (journalists, customers) will be very surprised about the level of technology, performance, comfort and features we have managed to put together as a new company with limited resources. That's something I can't wait for - and we are almost there.

Maybe also one thing to clarify - while many customers come directly to us, we as an OEM are actually selling cars to our partners - dealers that are representing us all over the world. There are currently 14 of those and more joining us almost every month. A car is "sold" for us when the dealer orders it - which doesn't necessarily mean that the dealer has sold it to an end customer. So it might happen that some end-customers, can still get a low VIN number (early delivery), if their local dealer has a slot that is not allocated to an end-user customer.



Hope that this gives some clarity on the situation - just wanted to be open and honest about it as it felt like lying when I see that in articles, while we have actually never said that we are sold out.

For the latest in the Rimac story, follow the dedicated TCN section.

Monday, 18 January 2021

Rimac Automobili Advancing Towards C_Two Series Production

January 18, 2021 - Rimac Automobili has announced that they are advancing towards the C_Two series production this year.

Index.hr reports that the pre-series production phase began in December.

"Eyes on the future. With the start of the pre-series vehicle production in December, we are advancing towards the series production of the C_Two in 2021. The pre-series cars will have a fit and finish, drivability, and reliability that is nearly production-ready. They will be used for further minor tweaks, homologation tests, durability tests, trim experimentation, NVH tweaking, and global product evaluation. It’s an important year ahead of us. We appreciate your support every step of the way!" Rimac announced on Facebook on January 2, 2021. 

"Walking around here and finally, after ten years of blood, sweat, and tears, seeing it all come together - what a feeling. Pre-series production ramping up and getting ready for customer cars," Mate Rimac revealed on his personal Facebook account on Thursday, January 14. 

Mate Rimac wrote on Facebook that he would produce numerous cars in this line this year if everything goes according to plan.

The assembly of each C_Two car will take approximately five weeks, halving the production time compared to the principle of static production outside the production line, used by some other supersport car manufacturers. The new process at full capacity will enable the construction of four final production vehicles per month.

However, at Rimac, the production process begins before the assembly of finished components on the line, since many components and systems are produced in the factory in Sveta Nedelja and Veliko Trgovišće, after which it is delivered to the vehicle assembly line.

The new production line is divided into five main zones. It begins with the attachment of all brackets and attachment points to the vehicle's carbon construction - the so-called monocoque chassis. The two technicians at each subsequent station then proceed to assemble the car piece by piece. Subassemblies such as the powertrain, dashboard or front radiator, and other parts are manufactured and prepared off-line, as part of Rimac Automobili's production facilities. They are delivered complete for installation on the vehicle assembly line.

The complete homologation process without any shortcuts, from the first concepts, through complete prototypes to cars on the road, is a three-year process. With the introduction of the new production line, Rimac Automobili will deliver the first cars to customers in 2021, unlike the original plan before the COVID-19 crisis, which foresaw deliveries in 2020. The final design and name of the vehicle will be revealed this year.

The German TV channel Welt also made a documentary about the origin of the model.

"We're working hard to design the car the way we envisioned it - a new type of hypercar that provides extreme electric drive performance and a new driving experience for the driver. At the same time, it will be a technical masterpiece from an engineering point of view. C_Two will have a new driving experience, high communicative handling, and first-class dynamics that will define our new car. We want this car to be intuitive and usable, but at the same time, sharp and capable. The testing and tuning process is crucial to ensure that our promises are met. Driving the C_Two will be something completely different," said Rimac.

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

Tuesday, 15 December 2020

Croatian Innovator from Samobor Achieved Excellent Success in Sarajevo

December 15, 2020 – Young Croatian innovator from Samobor Matija Hržić won third place for his innovation Smart bee scale at the Fair of Innovations and Entrepreneurship in Sarajevo.

As Večernji list reports, after conquering the ARCA international exhibition. together with colleagues Lovro Stipanović and Josip Oroz, young Samobor innovator Matija Hržić won third place and the Special Award "Sarajevo 2020" in Sarajevo at the first virtual Fair of Innovations and Entrepreneurship "Sarajevo 2020".

His mentor was a teacher at the Vocational High School Samobor and innovator Ivan Vlainić. The award was presented to him by Croatian entrepreneur Mate Rimac, who was also one of Vlainić's students.

Almost two decades ago, professor Ivan Vlainić encouraged Rimac to apply for the first student competition, which he won. A few months ago, he also encouraged Matija Hržić to apply for the Innovation Entrepreneurship Fair "Sarajevo 2020".

Thanks to the award, Hržić's innovation Smart bee scale will bear the International Federation of Inventors' Associations' logo, better known by the acronym IFIA.

What exactly is a smart bee scale? Namely, beehives are often a hundred kilometers away from the beekeepers' residence, making it impossible to monitor them regularly. The scale is therefore equipped with many sensors. Thus, by placing the hive on the scale and implementing its sensors inside the hive, all important data can be available to the beekeeper in real-time. Therefore, the beekeeper can act on time and apply solutions to the observed problems in order to potentially prevent swarming, starvation, or death of his bee community.

Matija was one of the 36 innovators who competed at the Sarajevo 2020 Fair. From one of the best-equipped exercise laboratories in Croatia, Matija's presentation was followed live by students of his Vocational High School and cheered for his best placement.

Matija's innovation was exhibited at the Vocational High School in Samobor, which was also attended by Matija and Mate. Today, many students pass by it who, in addition to professors Ivan and Mate, now have another role model.

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

Monday, 14 December 2020

Entrepreneurial Legend Mate Rimac Has New Investors, Who Are They?

December the 14th, 2020 - Croatian entreprener Mate Rimac, who is by far the perfect example that with enough grit and effort, you can succeed here in Croatia, has attracted yet more new investors from different parts of the globe.

The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has seen many a previously planned investment grind to a halt, be put on pause for better days or simply be thrown in the bin. Mate Rimac, however, has continued to attract attention in terms of investment. Rimac has done the impossible in many ways, but by far the most surprising move he has made of late is managing to gain the attention of some of the giants of the automotive world. The idea of a Croatian automotive industry was unthinkable not so long ago, and for many it still is, but Rimac has managed to make the idea at least conceivable.

It shouldn't be surprising, when looking at his rather remarkable record, that this man of many talents is continuing to attract investor attention even during these unprecedented and extremely difficult times.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, about ten days ago, new investors entered the ownership structure of Rimac Automobili, according to a report from Lider. According to information from the court register, Neurone R SA from Luxembourg is registered as a new member of Mate Rimac's wildly successful company headquartered in Sveta Nedelja, while the investor from Abu Dhabi, Ziad Tassabehji, who was otherwise one of Mate Rimac's first investors back in 2014, left the ownership, ie he is no longer registered as a member.

Back at the beginning of October, KINGRICH INVESTMENTS LIMITED from Hong Kong also entered the ownership structure of Rimac Automobil, while at the end of September, China Dynamics (Holdings) Limited left the ownership structure.

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Monday, 23 November 2020

VIDEO: Boy Who Visits Rimac Automobili Taken for Ride in Concept_One

November the 23rd, 2020 - Croatian entrepreneur Mate Rimac never has a good gesture far from hand, and he has dished out yet another wonderful surprise to a young boy from Sveta Nedelja who visits Rimac Automobili on his bike every day - a ride in no less than the amazing Concept_One.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the boy Ante from Sveta Nedelja visits Rimac Automobili's headquarters every single day on his bike to watch what is happening there. His wish was to ride in Rimac's incredible Concept One. Rimac decided to fulfill that desire for him, and he took to Facebook to let the world know what happened, attaching the boy's video of the ride.

“In the Q3 public report video I posted, I mentioned the [company's] campus and how I want it to be without fences so anyone from the public can come into the closest contact with what we do. One of the goals is for local kids to grow up with the sight of hypercars and various prototypes of all possible manufacturers being tested on the surrounding roads and thus encourage them to one day pursue a technological occupation.

But that’s really nothing new - that’s how we functioned all the time until recently. A bunch of kids come on bikes and ride around the company's headquarters, they even go into plants and offices and walk around freely, look at the cars and talk to the employees. Ante is one of those who came by bike almost every day. After a while we all already knew him and let him enter freely. His biggest wish was to get a tour of the Concept_One - so I fulfilled that wish for him, as was done for many other kids in the area (only they didn’t post the video of the ride on YouTube).

Unfortunately a year ago we had to put up a gate and a fence because all sorts of things were going on and we needed to be sure none of that could pose any harm to us. From the beginning, our headquarters has been designed so that anyone can come the company and enter certain spaces, but that there's a clear boundary from which only employees can go further (eg in offices) - this idea was built in right from the very first concept, so the equipment is designed as such,'' explained Mate Rimac.

Watch the video of the boy who visits Rimac Automobili on his two wheels every day take a ride in Rimac's amazing Concept_One:

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Saturday, 14 November 2020

Transparency: Entrepreneur Mate Rimac Reveals Wage, Wages of Employees

November the 14th, 2020 - Croatian entrepreneur Mate Rimac is well known for a multitude of reasons. His desire to push Croatia forward is second only to his success with his remarkable company, Rimac Automobili, and now he can add total transparency to his list - a rare quality among Croatian employers.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the wildly successful entrepreneur Mate Rimac has released a YouTube video in which he is frank and open about the one thing most of us feel uncomfortable discussing - finances.

"I think that in Croatia there's a very strong interest in what Rimac Automobili is doing and what is happening in our country. I also sometimes see that there is a misunderstanding about what we do, how we do it, etc. I think the best way to inform people about that is in a direct way - as as little information as possible is lost.

I took some time and tried to show, in the most transparent way, what, how and why we do what we do. Maybe I’ll make a regular thing of it. I've never seen such ''radical transparency'' anywhere, so I'm really interested in how it will go. Now that I’ve started recording, I can see a lot of things that I should add or do differently - but I’ll do that another time.

Here, grab your popcorn and enjoy,'' wrote Rimac.

"We have a net salary of approximately 10,500 kuna without transport and accommodation, and 11,500 kuna with transport and accommodation included. That's far from something we can all be happy with. We want to be competitive on the international labour market, not just here on the Croatian one, and we want those employee salaries to be as high as possible. Rimac Automobili alone has a gross cost of 14 million kuna per month for salaries. Maybe one interesting thing... seeing as I don't know why it should be hidden, this is my net salary,'' said the very open entrepreneur Mate Rimac, showing a graph which shows that his net salary is just under 35,000 kuna.

If you understand Croatian, can watch his full report on YouTube below:

For the latest travel info, bookmark our main travel info article, which is updated daily

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