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Future Billionaires: Top 4 Most Successful Young Slavic Entrepreneurs

Are the countries of the former “Eastern Bloc” finally entering global business?

Fotorech (CC0), Pixabay

Innovating and generating new ideas is a demanding task, but someone’s got to do it. Among world’s most prolific entrepreneurs and creators of tomorrow, there is no shortage of Slavs. Successful in various industries and niches without signs of slowing down, there is a number of creative minds that has made it to the absolute top in what they do.

Branko Milutinović, Nordeus, Serbia

A graduate of University of Belgrade, Branko is the CEO and co-founder of a self funded mobile game development company Nordeus that currently ranks as one of the fastest growing European businesses in the video game industry. A former Microsoft employee, Branko is a programmer by profession. After spending a some time in Denmark at Microsoft, he decided it wasn’t the right job for him, and returned to Serbia with two friends who also worked with him in Copenhagen. Upon arrival, three of them decided they wanted to make video games. ‘We weren’t doing this to get rich, we wanted to live off making games,’ Milutinović said. However, they did become rich, as value of Nordeus is currently assessed to be at 75 million dollars with a steady growth. Certainly their most popular product is the Top Eleven Football Manager, a game which simulates managing a football team. Today, Jose Mourinho is the face of the game, and he even offers advice and tips to the players when they are managing their teams. Partnering with Facebook, Top Eleven is free to play and available to anyone with an account. Nordeus is also praised for their philanthropic efforts, as they have been involved as one of the largest donors in Serbia for numerous causes.

Mate Rimac, Rimac Automobili, Croatia

Included in Forbes annual list ‘30 under 30’, Mate Rimac is certainly not an ordinary entrepreneur. Building the world’s fastest electric car has made him a true pioneer of the automotive industry. Proving that electrical cars can be fast and sport like at the same time as they are environment friendly and safe has earned him numerous credentials and wealth to go with it. Rimac even converted an E-Type Jaguar on demand by the British royal family, that was eventually used to drive Prince Harry and Duchess of Sussex on their wedding day. However, he started his business in a less than glamorous environment. Working in his garage, Rimac’s first project was turning his BMW into an electric car using parts he ordered online. Soon after that, the core vision of his brand and business was born. Selling his Concept_One model for 750, 000 euros has gone pretty well for the young businessman, as it was reported his cars are pre ordered and sold for the next two years of production. As Rimac Automobili states on their website, ‘Today, we are unleashing the full potential of Nikola Tesla’s invention, the alternating current electric motor, in many ways and industries.’

Konstantin Rangelov, Dronamic, Bulgaria

A highly unusual story of an invention that turned two brothers into millionaires, Dronamics is a product that came to be invented almost by accident. A Bulgarian who went to study in Netherlands, Rangelov was often homesick and especially craved Bulgarian cheese he could not find anywhere in Netherlands. Therefore, he started thinking about ways it could be easily and quickly transported from his native to his adopted country. An idea he came up with was a small aircraft that could transport up to 350 kg in a very short span of time. This bred an idea for a product that might be both innovative and lucrative on the international market, and Dronamics was born. ‘We have estimated that for many years people who have made planes have always had a huge limitation — the need for a pilot in the cabin. For supplies, the price is very important and a new design was needed to make it more aerodynamic,’ said Rangelov. Operating in Asia, Africa, Europe and Latin America, Dronamics can rightfully be called a global hit which has deservedly won Rangelov a place in Forbes ‘30 under 30’ list.

Rostislav Knap, CallPage, Poland

A CEO and co-founder of CallPage widget, Rostislav Knap is not an engineer or a programmer like other entrepreneurs on this list, but has a background in finance and business instead. Before founding CallPage, Knap worked for a number of local and international companies as Human Resource Manager, Financial consultant and Business consultant. However, after a few years he felt he had enough knowledge and experience to create a substantial product that would help other entrepreneurs and businesses thrive on a larger scale. Creating a widget which tracks and analyzes the behavior and actions of your site’s visitors, CallPage also has an option which offers those visitors a call to a consultant at your company in under 30 seconds. Quick and efficient are the words to live by in the 21st century, and Knap has understood this concept well as he got a 500,000 dollar investment for his company in 2016. Today, CallPage services are used by companies like Audi and Virgin, available in multiple continents, with company operating from offices in Krakow and San Francisco.

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Written by Tatjana P.

Tatjana Pavlovic - a skilled writer based in Serbia that shares great love for all Slavic related things. She enjoys the opportunity to write for Slavorum because of her passion for reading and writing about traveling and exploring.

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