Several companies operating in various fields of the Slovak economy have succeeded with their products abroad. The Slovak Spectator brings short profiles of some of them.
The software company Eset describes itself as “a pioneer in proactive protection from cybernetic threats”. It was officially established in Bratislava in 1992, but it had developed a scanning technology already in 1987 when Peter Paško and Miroslav Trnka discovered one of the first computer viruses in the world. They called it “Vienna”, and created a programme for its detection. In 1992 they established Eset, together with Rudolf Hrubý.
Eset employs about 800 people all around the world. Its headquarters are in Bratislava, and it has regional distribution centres in San Diego, Buenos Aires and Singapore, and branches in Sao Paolo and Prague. Eset also established a network of centres to study malware, which are located in Bratislava, Košice, Prague, Krakow, Buenos Aires, Singapore, Montreal and Moscow.
Eset was the first Slovak company to appear in the Deloitte Technology Fast 50 CEE in 2002. Moreover, it is one of the fastest growing technological companies in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, according to the Deloitte Technology Fast 500 EMEA ranking.
The company was named one of the most innovative organisations in Europe in the HSCB European Business Awards for its software products. It has also received the Company of the Year award from Trend weekly three years in a row, and according to the Best Employers in Slovakia 2009 study it was the second best employer in the category of small and medium-sized companies. Eset was also awarded the Via Bona 2009 prize of the Pontis Foundation for corporate social responsibility.
The Bratislava-based company Sygic focuses on developing navigation systems. It was established in 2004 by Michal Štencl, Martin Kališ and Peter Pecho and develops navigation software that can run on any operation system and adapt to any device. Their systems currently navigate in 115 countries around the world, according to the firm.
It became the first navigation application for iPhone available in the App Store, and soon became the Top Grossing application in the App Store in 10 countries. Sygic also became the second company in the world to bring navigation to the Android operating system, and the first firm to offer 3D navigation, according to the company.
Sygic launched Family a safety and location sharing application in 2013, for which it was awarded by North America’s largest parent testing community, the Parent Tested Parent Approved (PTPA). It also offers professional navigation solutions for businesses. Its Sygic Fleet was used by the organisers of the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London and the police force in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
The firm has been listed in both the Deloitte Fast 50 CEE and Deloitte Fast 500 EMEA chart of the fastest growing IT companies.
WebSupport is among the biggest providers of webhosting services in Slovakia. It was established in 2002 by Michal Truban and Pavel Stano. At the moment it has 55,280 customers and operates more than 80,000 domains. In addition to Slovakia the company operates in Austria, the Czech Republic and Hungary, according to the firm.
WebSupport has launched several start-up projects, like Nicereplay.com, which is a tool for learning about the quality of offered services and help lines, and InHiro.com, a tool for easy hiring of people through social networks, the Hospodárske Noviny daily reported.
The company appeared in Deloitte’s Technology Fast 50 CEE in 2013, where it placed eighth.
Aircraft manufacturer Aerospool was founded in 1990 by pilots from Prievidza. The company focuses on production and maintenance of ultra-light airplanes. Its best known product is ultra-light airplane the WT9 Dynamic, produced since 2000, which has received certificates not only in Slovakia, but in the Czech Republic, Germany and elsewhere, according to the Sme daily.
The company started with manufacturing pieces for various planes, including the Sky Boy, WT6, Koala, Windex and Eurofox. In 1992 it began producing its own planes, the ultra-light airplane Compact and Impulz, which was a prototype of WT9 Dynamic, according to the company’s website.
In 1993 Aerospool launched cooperation with the German firm Schempp-Hirth Flugzeugbau GmbH. In 1998 it started producing gliders for the Schempp-Hirth company.
Slovak firms also report successes in the military sphere. Engineering company Way Industries from Krupina produces the Božena vehicle which has been used for demining in several military missions in Europe, Africa, America and Asia. Moreover, its latest product, the Božena Riot armoured personnel carrier, is used to regulate riots and control crowds in streets and built-up areas, according to the company.
In addition, Slovak companies Virtual Reality Media and the state-run Letecké Opravovne Trenčín manufacture a flight simulator used to train Afghan crews to fly G222 military cargo planes. The simulator, worth $2.5 million, is one of the biggest of the six flight training systems supplied to the United States, the SITA newswire reported in August 2012.
For more information about the Slovak business environment please see our Investment Advisory Guide.
18. Nov 2013 at 0:00 | Radka Minarechová