Our offices worldwide, part 1: Here comes Croatia!
Anton Belan started to work for Messe München in a marketing agency called „Ozeha“, still in the former Yugoslavia 35 years ago. After the breakup of Yugoslavia, the war started in Croatia and many people lost their jobs, among them was Anton Belan. In 1995, he founded his own company, called Belimpex d.o.o. and signed a contract with Messe München GmbH.
“The beginning was very though: To have an own company was very strange and to run it successfully even more, because we lived in Yugoslavia which was a Communist regulated country.“, Anton Belan rembers.
Step by step, he had to approach potential exhibitors and visitors in Croatia, but war had just ended and nobody was able to predict the future. “Can you imagine to do business after 5 years of war? Everything had been destroyed.“, Anton Belan resumes his first years.
From the beginning, BAU was a focus trade show in Croatia, for both, exhibitors and visitors. Houses, that had been destroyed during the war had to be re-build and BAU was a perfect platform for new ideas.
Step by step, also Mr. Belans son, Tonči Belan entered into the company and in 2006, the Belans founded a travel agency as well, since there were many inquiries for accommodation during the fairs.
Moreover, Belimpex also builds booths for their exhibtors.
Nowadays, marketing activities and the way to reach the target groups have changed. Online marketing is becoming important, but, according to the Croatian experiences of Anton and Tonci Belan:
“the ‘traditional’ way of speaking to each other and networking will always be necessary in order to gain the interest of customers.”
“BAU 2015 was a key trade fair for Croatia: We have put hard effort to reach growth, despite the economic crises in Croatia – and it worked out. Together with the BAU team, which was always helpful and very fast in solving issues. Without this solid collaboration with our BAU partners we would not have this result. We are looking forward to set up a new record for BAU 2017 “, says a motivated Mr. Belan.