1000 More Companies Opened in 2018 Than 2017 in Croatia

Lauren Simmonds

As Novac/Gradonacelnik.hr writes on the 26th of June, 2019, after recently analysing the positive trends of the Croatian company scene on the basis of the data of the Ministry of Economy and other competent bodies, and finding that the largest number of Croatia’s company owners are based in island towns and the largest growth has been recorded by the City of Dubrovnik, let’s look at the situation with entrepreneurs.

The number of newly established companies in Croatia, likely to the surprise of many, is continually growing, in 2018, as many as 14,267 of them were founded, which is almost one thousand more than were found back in 2017.

The situation and trends have been analysed by city, that is – this time – the commercial court settlements in which the companies were founded. The data received from the Croatian Ministry of Justice shows that the largest number of companies last year, after Zagreb, were registered in Split – 1,680, then Rijeka – 1,348 and Pazin – 1,155, followed by Osijek – 1,123, Varaždin – 9,73, Zadar 7,30 and Bjelovar – 3,81.

In Zadar and Bjelovar alone, the largest growth in the number of newly established companies in the past year was recorded, 14.4 percent and 12.7 percent. Third comes the number of newly established companies in Split – 10.8 percent, followed by Zagreb, Osijek, Varaždin, Pazin, and then by Rijeka.

The Mayor of Zadar, Branko Dukić, pointed out that the fact that is now the third year in a row in which all economic indicators in the area of ​​the City of Zadar have been continually and significantly increasing, and today, Zadar is said to be a city of dynamic and agile entrepreneurship.

”The number of newly established companies, as well as newly employed people, as well as revenues, especially those from overseas sales, have all been growing. All of this suggests that most of Zadar’s businesses, with their products and services, and primarily long-term business planning, have managed to respond to the challenges of the economic crisis and today, their development is based on solid ground.

They also demonstrate the ability to adjust and showcase their readiness to compete on the European market, which is confirmed by the high growth in exports of goods and services. It’s great that growth is recorded by different branches of the economy – not just tourism and trade, but also manufacturing, transportation, and storage and construction,” Dukić stated.

He noted that this year, they completed an investment worth more than six million kuna, secured by European Union funds, to redesign the existing entrepreneurial incubator and equip it with brand new facilities and equipment.

”We’ve invested in a coworking space, computer labs and conference halls, 3D labs, photovoltaic plants, various pieces of IK equipment and software, as well as a lounge bar for users, a meeting space… A new specialised incubator for high value added services is being prepared, and services and support for start-ups and small and medium-sized entrepreneurs who are developing innovative products are being provided, as well as access to knowledge-based and innovation-based entrepreneurship. For that, we’ve secured somewhat over 22 million kuna through the ITU mechanism,” said a proud Dukić.

The City of Zadar, with EU funds, in partnership with Croatia’s Chamber of Commerce (HGK), also redid ”COIN Zadar”, in a move worth a massive 5.1 million kuna. This is the very first Zadar-based coworking scene, and it has significantly eased up the launch of its own work, particularly in the independent activities of various ICT related professions.

In cooperation with Zadar University and with thanks to the funds of the cross-border cooperation project, they invested about 320,000 kuna in the design and equipping of the Space Code Hub. It is intended for students, IT entrepreneurs, and other similar target groups.

Recently, the construction of a 24.4 million euro Creative Industries Centre primarily focused on the audiovisual industry and the IT industry has also begun. Dukić added that Zadar is systematically investing in its young people through various scholarships for pupils and students.

”Investing in science, knowledge and professional skills is the only guarantee of successful entrepreneurship, economic growth, and professional development,” concluded Dukić.

The second largest recorded growth in the number of registered companies in Croatia is in the continental town of Bjelovar, which isn’t really all that surprising given their tax free model and the number of privileges Dario Hrebak and his city administration introduced to boost the local economy.

In just two years, Deputy Mayor Igor Brajdić said, Bjelovar’s pro-entrepreneur initiatives spurred 240 entrepreneurs and company owners who invested a massive eight million kuna into Bjelovar’s business development, while the town subsidised investment with three million kuna.

”The positive trend of growth of newly established companies is a reflection of mutual dialogue and understanding between businessmen and the representatives of the local authorities, as well as the positive investment climate created in Bjelovar.

The synergy between the city administration and businessmen is also reflected in the fact that Bjelovar is one of the most quickest cities to issue building permits. We also encourage innovation, so we organised the Best Startup Award for the second consecutive year, and the winner of the competition deserves 100,000 kuna and its business starts or expands in Bjelovar,” he added.

”The city administration operates proactively and is at the service of the economy and citizens of Bjelovar, which has resulted in an increase in the number of entrepreneurs and company owners, and ultimately the number of employees,” emphasised Brajdić.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business page for much more on doing business in Croatia, working in Croatia, finding employment in Croatia and investing in Croatia.


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