Croatian Company “Jedem Doma” Expanding Even in Crisis

Lauren Simmonds

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marta Duic writes on the 13th of October, 2020, the Zagreb service Jedem doma (I’m eating at home) recently opened its first point of sale in Ilica 76 near Britanski trg (British square). As the owner Zeljka Maras explained, the idea of ​​opening a store has existed for two years, more precisely since they transformed their business model from a household help service in the field of cooking to the production of premium ready meals, and the search for the ideal space has borne fruit this year.

“The Ilica area located between Britanski trg and Meduliceva has spontaneously profiled itself as a neighbourhood of fine and quality food over recent years. A lot of our clients live in this part of the city or gravitate to it, so Britanski trg is undoubtedly our first location choice for opening a store,” said Maras. As she claimed, Jedem doma have focused all their efforts on making their webshop have delivery available to the whole of Croatia, which brings them about 70 percent of their business, and the Britanski square-based store has since come to life in full, and if this formula proves successful, Jedem doma will open even more stores in Zagreb and other cities.

The best-selling dishes are those that are complex to prepare. They are one of the few companies to offer meals for people on a low carb diet, so their zucchini and cauliflower a la rice spaghetti regularly sells out as soon as they arrive. In addition to this store, part of the Jedem doma range can be purchased in several stores with local and delicatessen products throughout Zagreb.

“When we started a new concept in our new kitchen a year ago, we developed two segments in parallel: the delivery of office meals to business customers, as well as the segment of premium semi-finished dishes intended for home cooking. In the beginning, the share of these two segments was approximately 50-50. With the onset of the pandemic, the office meal segment stopped overnight. Luckily, we had an ‘ace up our sleeve’ that proved to be perfect for the coronavirus crisis. Already prepared high-quality dishes, without additives and preservatives, vacuumed in sterilised jars, were an ideal product for many people who had gone into self-isolation. We spontaneously focused our efforts on it and now the segment of the production of premium semi-finished dishes intended for home use makes up about 90 percent of our business,” added Maras.

Losses in the office lunch segment for Jedem doma’s business users were compensated by the innovative product 7-day and 14-day detox programme, in which customers receive three nutritionally designed and prepared meals. Detox programmes have become very popular during the summer, and the demand for them continues. Although the coronavirus crisis hit this company as well, they didn’t fire anyone but instead quickly switched to the production of premium semi-finished dishes. In the last month, they have even hired people and they currently have eight employees.

”The start of business was five years ago for us when we brought the cooking service in the homes of our clients to the Zagreb market. Today we have our production plant and store in a premium location, the number of employees and our revenues have grown by 500 percent compared to the beginning, and Jedem doma has become a well-known and recognisable brand with great growth potential in the meantime. One of the long-term plans is certainly to franchise the business model for potential business partners from abroad,” Maras revealed.

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