Friday, 1 October 2021

Zagreb Holding Reduces Losses in First Half of 2021 Owing to Cistoca Subsidiary

October the 1st, 2021 - Zagreb Holding is often splashed across the news for all the wrong reasons, but it managed to do well during the first half of 2021, reducing its losses quite significantly when compared to the same period back in pandemic-dominated 2020.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Tomislav Pili writes, Zagreb Holding reduced its losses in the first half of the year according to the consolidated report for the group, and the biggest ''weight'' in terms of finances for the business came from its Cistoca subsidiary.

The announcement on the Zagreb Stock Exchange states that the group recorded 1.96 billion kuna in operating income in the first six months of this year, which is 7.4 percent more on an annual basis, and total revenues amounted to an impressive 2.02 billion kuna.

The biggest impetus for the growth of Zagreb Holding's income came from the business of gas supply and distribution by expanding to new distribution areas. Namely, Gradska plinara, which is part of Zagreb Holding, has been supplying eleven new distribution areas in as many as nine different Croatian counties since back in April.

It thus gained 45,000 new customers. This resulted in an increase in the Group's revenue by HRK 24.7 million, or 16 percent on an annual basis.

However, in addition to revenues, expenses also grew, by three percent to 2.08 billion kuna, so the group ended the first half of the year with a loss of 60.8 million kuna, and while that seems steep, it's an improvement when compared to the same period last year, when losses amounted to almost 140 million kuna.

“The overall results of the Zagreb Holding Group's operations continue to be greatly influenced by the operations of the Cistoca subsidiary. In this business segment, a loss of 85.7 million kuna was recorded,'' the aforementioned report states.

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Monday, 10 May 2021

Former Zagreb Holding Employee Must Return Half a Million Kuna

May the 10th, 2021 - One former Zagreb Holding employee has found themselves in quite a bizarre situation in which they must pay back a massive half a million kuna due to their own alleged greed.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, a former employee of Zagreb Holding from Varazdin County must pay the huge sum of 558,000 kuna to Vodoopskrba i odvodnja (Water and sewerage supply) from Zagreb and reimburse 48,250 kuna in court costs. This is the financial painful result of a somewhat unusual situation, as reported by Vecernji list.

The individual in question was employed by Zagreb Holding (Zagrebacki holding) until back in March 2013, when he was then fired. He initiated a labour dispute against Zagreb Holding and the company was ordered by the competent court in Zagreb to return him to his old work position.

In November of that same year, Vodoopskrba i odvodnja was entered into the court register as an independent company and the entire business of the former branch was transferred to that, as were all employment contracts of that time. The former Zagreb Holding employee subsequently initiated proceedings against the company for the payment of arrears of wages from the day of their extraordinary dismissal until the final court ruling establishing that that same dismissal was in fact illegal.

Zagreb Holding paid him money on several occasions throughout 2019, and after these payments, the former employee addressed the legal services of Vodoopskrba i odvodnja with a request to pay him the amounts listed according to the final judgment of the court, even though he knew that the requested amounts had already been paid previously.

He threatened an employee working for Zagreb Holding's legal department that he would initiate enforcement proceedings against Zagreb Holding if the funds weren't paid to him "as soon as possible".

As such, back io in November 2019, 558,000 kuna was paid into his account. Only then, in correspondence with Zagreb Holding, did they realise that he had already been paid the requested amount and now must return it. A criminal complaint was also filed against the former employee who obviously hadn't ever heard of quitting while ahead.

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Sunday, 20 October 2019

Zagreb Holding Hopes Digitisation Will Give Service Users Better Experience

As Novac/Matija Boltizar writes on the 17th of October, 2019, Zagreb Holding is generally perceived by the public only through the services provided by that company. First and foremost, these are the collection and disposal of household waste, followed by the supply of drinking water and drainage, the distribution and the supply of gas, and the maintenance of the roads and public green spaces.

That being said, Zagreb Holding also deals with less well-known services such as holiday arrangements for children and young people and pharmacy services, but what few people may know is that this company has a specific corporate governance structure.

Zagreb Holding is a publicly owned company, 100 percent owned by the City of Zagreb, which is also the sole founder of the company. It has fourteen subsidiaries, owns eight companies and one institution, has about 7,700 employees, more than one million users and is, in terms of number and type of services, a truly unique company in Croatia.

Running such a corporation has many challenges, the biggest of which is balancing financial profitability with providing complete and equal service to all of Zagreb's citizens. What corporate governance looks like in one such company, Ana Stojić Deban, the President of the Management Board of Zagreb Holding, explained in an interview.

''Zagreb Holding operates in the public interest and, unlike the private sector, the primary objective of the business is to achieve the financial and non-financial goals and interests of the wider community. Regardless of the ownership structure, corporate governance should certainly ensure a balance between the financial and strategic goals of the company and the business based on the principles of sustainable development, which, depending on the sector of business of the company, best contributes to the development of the local and general social community,'' stated Stojić Deban. She also noted that special attention is paid to business transparency.

Among other things, all information about Zagreb Holding's work is publicly available on the company's website. The basic document in this segment of their work is the Corporate Governance Code. Its purpose is to establish, maintain and develop high standards of corporate governance and transparent business operations. The company also applies a strict Code of Ethics. Zagreb Holding also has a dual corporate governance model that is typical of all companies within that group.

Considering that a large number of activities are performed as a public service, Stojić Deban points out that there is no possibility for any type of different organisation, that is, of changing the ownership structure of the company.

''It should be noted that most of our services are in the category of services of general economic interest, which aren't performed for profit but to ensure the delivery of these services to end users in an efficient, economical and purposeful manner, at the lowest cost to the customers. In order to ensure a balanced development of the city and accessibility of services to all categories of users, investing in the city's infrastructure is crucial for our business, with which decisions on obtaining capital are inevitably connected,'' explained Deban Stojić, noting that Zagreb Holding has, in the last two years alone, realised a massive 1 billion kuna of investments and 323 million kuna of investments in public buildings.

Due to the nature of its business, Zagreb Holding is exposed to various types of environmental, social and management risks.

''These have multiple impacts on the business - there are factors that can be influenced and/or predicted, and there are also those that cannot be influenced. Managing risks is the responsibility of the Board. In principle, we can't influence regulatory changes, but the potential to nullify negative financial consequences lies primarily in the conversational corporate governance and use of synergy of the group, both operationally and financially,'' emphasised the President of the Management Board.

In addition to transparency, Zagreb Holding pays great attention to communication. In addition to regular communication with investors and employees, Zagreb Holding assures its customers the availability of all services and related information 24 hours a day.

An important role is played by the company's call centre. Users can call just one number at any time to inquire about all of Holding's services, instead of needing to find and call twenty of them. There are also customer centres and a mobile office - a specialised vehicle that allows citizens to contract services from the Zagreb Holding portfolio almost on their own doorstep.

Communication via Internet services, numerous public forums, educational activities, free guides and leaflets should also be mentioned.

Speaking of the future of the business, Deban Stojić says that development plans are related to the interests primarily of the users of their services and the employees themselves.

''These are processes that are carried out on a continuous basis with the aim of fulfilling the basic task of Zagreb Holding - the efficient and lasting provision of services of public interest with maximum environmental protection and protection of the interests of the local community. In addition, business digitalisation enables us to tailor our services to the needs of our customers and these are the processes that will characterise Zagreb Holding's business in the future as well,'' concluded Deban Stojić.

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