“Since I joined MET in 2015, we made it from a small start-up to a large player in the market. The company has gone from 2 customers and being only a trader in wholesale to becoming one of the most well-known suppliers, with around 1000 customers and almost 2 billion euros of annual revenue,” recalls Mario Matković. The capacity booked at the Krk LNG terminal has obviously helped this growth (revenue in 2020: 52 million euros, 2021: 332 million euros, 2022: 1,93 billion euros).
Successfully supporting the LNG project, together with MET International and MET Hungary: this is another achievement the CEO is proud of. He considers that being part of Swiss-based MET Group is a great advantage – both for MET Croatia and its customers. “We are viewed as a big and stable company, being part of an even bigger Group. This helped, especially during the difficult times in 2021 and 2022. More companies are willing to work with us and are even approaching us to collaborate. On top of that, our customers are with us since they consider MET as the best choice and the most reliable partner,” says Mario.
As MET Croatia is not supplying households or the public procurement segment, the target market is smaller than Croatia’s total demand. The 10-year-old company’s market share is around 20% of the target market. Some of the top 10 biggest customers in Croatia have decided to choose MET as their supplier this year, mainly because of flexible index-based products, with possibility for fixations. One of the key advantages was also having a dedicated expert whom they can call (and someone will actually answer the call in person), which is not the case with most state-owned companies. Also, special requests like supporting calculations, consumption projections or market reports are available for these customers, which was not the case with their previous supplier.
Among the greatest challenges, the CEO mentions regulatory changes – which often come last-minute, for example recently seen on the supply of the household segment. Also, some state-owned companies offer products which are not in line with normal market levels in terms of price, flexibility and payment. Another obstacle is that a lot of experts left the energy industry or the country, and it is becoming more difficult to hire high quality graduates and do business. Last but not least, the green transition remains a challenge: “Most young people are interested in renewable energy sources and sustainability. Hopefully, we will also see some renewables projects in Croatia in the coming years,” the head of MET Croatia says.
What did the company give to the Croatian market? Mario Matković provides a firm answer: market knowledge, increased competition, increased standards, professionalism, complexity of offered products, tailor-made approach.
Success is also about people, of course. The CEO thinks that a real birthday present for him is “having the same core team of employees, without anyone significant leaving the company. Also, two colleagues (Pavle Žegarac and Lorena Bišćan) will be celebrating their 10-year anniversaries at MET this year.” As for what MET Croatia will look like on its 20th anniversary, Mario admits that it is very hard to predict – but realistically the company should be in the top 3 gas and power suppliers in Croatia, with a sizeable renewables portfolio.