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The ceremonial takeover of the plant was attended by representatives of the Serbian Government, including its Prime Minister, Ana Brnabić.
“We have been working on this project for more than two years – initially, we took into consideration five companies in Serbia. We chose 14.OCTOBAR that was the most advantageous in terms of our portfolio. Its production consists of special production which represents about 30% and civilian production forming about 70%,” President of MSM GROUP, Marián Goga, explained to TASR.
In the past, up to 8,000 people worked in this engineering production giant in Kruševac. The company was mainly focused on the civilian program of producing construction and agricultural machinery and classical chip machining. The defensive segment was also part of the production and was aimed at large calibre ammunition. Two years ago, however, IMK went bankrupt and currently employs hardly 130 people.
“We are already preparing contracts for nearly 160 people who will enter their jobs at the first stage. Let’s say, we could employ up to a thousand people in the horizon of one year,” Marián Goga said.
He believes there will be no problems with recruiting new employees. “Frankly, that’s exactly why we came here. In Slovakia, we feel very strongly the lack of motivated, technically competent people. From our point of view, we currently miss one generation in Slovakia. But here, in Serbia, most employees are in working age and they are very interested in working. In the surroundings, unemployment reaches 20%, so people really want to work,” he added.
However, there is a lack of professional senior management.
“We have to fill the posts of chief executive officers and chief financial officers by people from Slovakia for now,” President Goga concluded.
The holding CZECHOSLOVAKGROUP and its Slovak branch MSM GROUP operate in the field of defence and civil industrial production. In Slovakia, MSM is also involved in the revitalization of the company ZTS Metalurg in Dubnica nad Váhom. The portfolio of the holding includes the production and sale of military and special vehicles, off-road trucks, weapons and weapon systems, ammunition, automotive, rail and aircraft industry engineering products, and brake systems for rail vehicles, as well as road, transport and logistics services.