Croatia has forged a reputation for being a country with spectacular vistas, making it a real hot spot for holidaymakers seeking somewhere different.
However, there's more to this tiny nation than just an unspoilt landscape; they're also starting to leave others behind when it comes to fintech.
Excelling in the digital payments sector, in particular, Croatia has enjoyed considerable success. Here's a closer look at the progress they've made and the companies who are leading the way.
Raw Talent Offering Potential
Croatia has already enjoyed several success stories, but it's only just beginning to unpack its potential. The country is crammed with self-taught individuals who have outstanding skills that haven't yet been fully realised.
Croatia is not a country to overlook for anyone interested in CFDs and investing in the financial tech market. As well as companies who have led the field in fintech, there's a whole generation of young people who have taken the time to upskill in this area. This means the Croatian market is spilling over with talent in fintech, providing even more potential for local businesses to gain a competitive advantage.
Despite having a population of just four million, over 30,000 active professionals are in the tech industry. A fintech collaboration agreement signed between Croatia and Israel will bring more investment into the sector, offering more opportunities and encouraging innovation.
Proven Success Stories
There is a considerable amount of untapped potential in Croatia, partially due to a lack of business skills. This is where the country offers investors the chance to see their money grow as fintech firms become more proficient in marketing raw talent.
However, some Croatian fintech companies have already enjoyed success on a global scale.
Microblink is an R&D company from Zagreb, Croatia, which was founded internally due to a lack of outside investment. Within just one year, Microblink hit the big time with Photomath, an app that used the camera on mobile phones to read and solve maths problems.
Since the Photomath app's outstanding success, Microblink has received more than €5 million in external investment. Their current projects are based on AI and data extraction and widely disseminated around Europe, Southeast Asia and the US, with over 100 million users.
Microblink's main customers lie within the banking sector, with big financial firms using the technology from Microblink to embed in their own apps.
This success has led to Deloitte naming Microblink as one of the top 500 fastest-growing firms within Africa, Europe and the Middle East.
But they’re not the only success story. Electrocoin created a retail service that enables shops to accept cryptocurrency for free. This led to Sveta Nedejla in Croatia being the first EU city to be able to offer this payment option.
In total, the Croatian digital payment market is estimated to have been worth €2 billion in 2020, a figure which demonstrates the full potential of Croatian fintech.
Croatian fintech firms need to adopt a more cohesive approach to become genuinely dominant on the world stage. Creating an active business community with conferences, seminars, and other networking events would seal the deal, helping to lift Croatia to become one of the major players in the fintech scene.