Croatian Companies: Is Infobip Worth More Than One Billion USD?

Lauren Simmonds

As Bernard Ivezic/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 8th of August, 2019, there have been stories of this Croatian company being funded with investment capital, especially since its formal global headquarters are in London, but this has always been strongly denied by Infobip. However, they have now confirmed that they were constantly receiving offers from various corporations for takeovers.

It is becoming increasingly clear that Infobip is changing its investment policy. This Croatian startup, founded by Silvio Kutić, Roberto Kutić and Izabel Jelenić, no longer hides the fact that it is interested in investment, and the main topic of concern in the industry is whether or not Infobip is worth more than one billion US dollars already.

Although there are those who are firmly convinced in that, the fact is that this still remains entirely unknown. Several people have claimed that Infobip is already worth more than one billion US dollars, but nobody wants to speak publicly about it.

It would be logical for investors to be the ones to answer this question, as in the case of Rimac Automobili after its last investment. Mate Rimac said at the time: “… as far as ownership is concerned, I now hold 47.7 percent. The Chinese Camel group holds 14 percent, Hyundai holds 11 percent, Porsche holds 10 percent, Kia holds 2.7 percent, and the rest are smaller shares which investors so far from 2012 and 2013 hold.”

From this, it can be calculated that Hyundai and Kia invested their 80 million euros into Rimac’s company with a valuation of 584 million euros, or 4.3 billion kuna. In other words, investors have confirmed that Rimac’s company is halfway to becoming a startup worth at least one billion US dollars in market value. In Croatia, so far, at least publicly, there are no startups which carry such value.

A number of other Croatian startups which have good foundations and could one day reach such high valuations. The latest in the series is ReversingLabs, which just won the Black Unicorn Award in Las Vegas, this company isn’t worth one billion US dollars, but its business moves do reveal what the plan is for this high-tech company from Zagreb.

There is a lot of ambition in many Croatian startups, such as Tolar and Zizoo, as well as Agrivi, Altpro, Bulb Technologies, Electrocoin, Include, Gideon Brothers, Nanobit, Oradian, Photomath (and Microlink), Visage Technologies and Zipato.

The above list is certainly not complete, nor does it mean that all of their aspirations will be realised at the same time. But, for the development of the Croatian startup ecosystem, the next turning point will be the emergence of the first Croatian company to be worth one billion US dollars. After Microsoft bought the Estonian startup Skype for a dizzying 8.5 billion dollars, a lot has changed in that country, and with it, much more has now become possible.

Skype’s founders and co-founders now have the capital and knowledge to be able to transfer that over into Estonia’s local ecosystem and further accelerate its development to the point that the whole country has started to look more digital, making the Estonians the champions of the whole of the EU in that regard today.

From this perspective, it is good that a Croatian company worth one billion US dollars will finally emerge, regardless of whether it is Rimac Automobili or Infobip. While Rimac is steadily climbing towards this goal through genuine investor interest, Infobip is in a slightly different position. After all, two of the three founders are brothers (the Kutićs), but they are working to alter the ”family” perception in the wider public. 

According to Silvio Kutić, who, in addition to being the co-founder, is also the CEO of this Croatian company, nfobip also transferred ten percent of its shares to its employees.

In addition, and they didn’t want to announce which companies they were talking about, Infobip has partnered with almost every major internet company in the world, from Facebook and Uber and beyond. Infobip also has several times the revenue of Rimac Automobili.

This Croatian company has grown by 30 percent for two consecutive years, and on top of all that, it has been favoured to become the prime competitor by all business indicators by America’s Twilio.

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