THIS CHALLENGING YEAR HAS SHOWN THE JOINT STRENGTH OF KING ICT, ITS PARTNERS AND CLIENTS
2020 was not, by any means, a typical year and the challenges it brought largely impacted the business world and IT industry, including KING ICT. Despite the challenges, and thanks to its successful cooperation with its partners and clients, King succeeded in further expanding its range of operations and developing new partnerships while strengthening existing ones. By working with cutting edge technology and implementing innovative enterprise solutions in Croatia and the region and in its expansion onto the Western European market, KING ICT has again justified the high expectations of its customers.
This year, KING ICT has taken the greatest step forward onto the Western European market. In Croatia, it has confirmed its status as one of the largest and best systems integrators, while at the global level, it has proven itself as a modern and highly professional company capable of competing on the international market.
We are proud to state that KING ICT signed a contract with the NATO Communications and Information Agency in the field of cybersecurity. This contract includes the delivery and implementation of SIEM solutions for managing security records and events, with the complete, cutting edge IT infrastructure and delivery, implementation, education and warranty services.
COVID-19 brought many unplanned challenges, demanding quick adaptation and response to the new circumstances. A certain number of our customers were left without a significant share of their revenues overnight, such as the air, road and rail transport segment. Company functioning and the delivery of contracted projects were transformed to a remote working regime, while our field staff had to be trained and equipped to meet the epidemiological safety requirements. A new business focus became helping our endangered customers to bridge this crisis period, to retain our complete staff, retain salary levels for all staff and to properly execute our EU-funded projects.
We end 2020 with 470 employees, a slight drop in consolidated revenues, and satisfactory profitability that will be expressed precisely in late January 2021 due to the significant disturbances on the global supply chain for IT equipment and the hindered conditions in project delivery.
We are proud to stress that during this year that has jeopardized the financial strength and resilience of our country, as a large and successful company, we will be paying approximately HRK 100 million in various tax and social contributions into the state budget.
QUICK AND SUCCESSFUL ADAPTATION TO CONDITIONS DURING THE PANDEMIC
Our business results in 2020 are largely due to the quick response of King experts and adaptation of our staff to the new working conditions brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic. At the start of the epidemic, a Crisis Management Team was established in the company to ensure the implementation of all prescribed measures and take all the necessary steps to ensure the health protection of staff, partners and customers. Our ongoing operations were retained through the establishment of an adequate ICT infrastructure for working from home, by ensuring the newest communication tools for the remote work environment. As a systems integrator with the mission of digitalising society, KING ICT implemented this project in record time, and our employees were very successful in adapting to the new working conditions.
THE PROJECTS THAT MARKED 2020
CITY OF DUBROVNIK
We successfully implemented a traffic congestion zone system, with the aim of implementing measures for sustainable urban mobility, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and reducing noise in the historical Old Town core of Dubrovnik. The system consists of traffic analysis cameras capable of processing analytical information (vehicle category and licence plate recognition), enabling efficient processing of the passage of every vehicle through the congestion zone, and ensuring secure wireless transmission of data to the city’s existing central integration system.
HRVATSKE AUTOCESTE (CROATIAN MOTORWAYS)
We are implementing a human resource management solution based on a SAP S/4HANA platform for Hrvatske Autoceste. The solution is planned for release for production use in early 2021. We are also in the midst of upgrading and reengineering the top-up system for ENC smart toll devices for Hrvatske Autoceste. The number of ENC users has increased, and accordingly, the SMS top-up system was upgraded and a new application for smart phones was built. The project is expected to be completed by the end of 2020.
HRVATSKE CESTE (CROATIAN ROADS)
We are pleased to note that the SAP S/4 HANA project implemented by KING ICT last year in Hrvatske ceste received an award for excellence as a significant contribution to digitalisation and modernisation of operations by the Croatian Association for Project Management.
For Tele2, we implemented critical service infrastructure based on IBM and Dell EMC servers. We also delivered a platform for safe data backup based on the Dell EMC DataDomain disc systems, and applications for archiving backups – DELL EMC Networker.
For Nova TV, we implemented a new disc system for audio and video content – Dell EMC Isilon. The Isilon architecture allows for high spatial scalability, and with that a linear growth in performance. This disc system architecture allows for sufficient bandwidth to meet the needs for today’s high resolution video, and is a common choice for media companies.
HEP PLIN (CROATIAN ELECTRIC – GAS)
For the company HEP Plin d.o.o. from Osijek, we developed and commissioned the natural gas calculation and payment collection system SAP HEP Plin Supply (for public and market natural gas supply). This is an On Premise SAP CRM/SAP ECC core and SAP IS-U integrated system, with implementation based on the SAP Activate methodology. The contracted project is scheduled for completion by the end of 2020, with integration with the systems of SAP HEP Plin Distribution and the ERP system of HEP d.d. (as the mother company).
For Telemach Slovenija, we implemented a project solution to meet the requirements of the IFRS16 standard that define the new guidelines for monitoring rentals and leasing. In addition to satisfying regulatory requirements, this solution also gives the user proper insight and improves financial planning abilities, and further strengthens the SAP ERP solution already in place.
MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE
An application was implemented to keep records of state-owned agricultural lands (eDPZ), including program modules for land use, contracts and reporting, and models for calculating leases, payment plans, supervision over the execution of obligations and recording payments. KING ICT is also a member of the consortium developing the electronic agriculture card (ePI) project. This solution includes the distribution of electronic ID cards for farmers, and implements a digital signature for the Single Direct Support application, the agricultural reporting management system (PIUS), the register of agricultural holdings (RPS), and implementation of the e-Agriculture (e-Poljoprivreda) solution.
For the purpose of developing KING ICT software solutions and products, we implemented the advanced application container platform, based on the VMware Tanzu Kubernetes Grid Integrated Edition. This is the first implementation of this solution in the Adriatic region.
PROJECTS IN THE REGION
FEDERAL FINANCE MINISTRY, BiH
To modernise its IT system, the Federal Finance Ministry launched a project to develop records software. The solution implemented by KING ICT Sarajevo will replace the existing Access base previously used in the Ministry, while in some sectors, this will be the first IT solution to be implemented.
BH TELECOM D.D. SARAJEVO
After implementing the Data Loss Prevention system in BH Telecom, KING ICT Sarajevo implemented a solution for the classification and digital labelling of documents. This also implied integration with existing tools for creating various types of files used in daily operations.
SECURITY MINISTRY, BiH
The aim of the project was to improve the quality and security of data exchange between law enforcement agencies in Bosnia and Herzegovina (as part of an IPA project). The project was aimed at strengthening security, reliability and availability of data for the Security Ministry and law enforcement agencies in BiH, and their further network integration. A total of BiH 21 law enforcement agencies were included in the project as end users, and the project involved the reconstruction and equipment of data centres, and the delivery and installation of servers and network equipment.
BiH BORDER POLICE
A video surveillance system was installed at international border crossings in Bosnia and Herzegovina (IPA project). In this project, KING ICT Sarajevo established a modern, network-oriented video surveillance system at border crossings that also allows for central supervision and system management.
MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE, FORESTRY AND WATER MANAGEMENT (NORTH MACEDONIA)
KING ICT North Macedonia is developing a Phytosanitary Information System for the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management. System development and implementation is aimed at supporting work in the field of phytosanitary policy, in compliance with the EU legislation. The project is financed by the EU.
AWARDS, RECOGNITION AND CERTIFICATES
- We confirmed our highest partner status with Dell EMC as a Titanium Partner, becoming the only company to hold this status in the Southeast Europe region
- We received the Dell Technologies Channel Services Delivery Excellence award for exceptional performance in service deliveries and dedication to customers and to Dell Technologies, becoming the only winner of this aware in the Southeast Europe region
- We also won four prestigious Dell Technologies awards, given by Dell to its partners and distributors for exceptional achievements in the previous year: Channel Partner of the Year in Croatia, Channel Partner of the Year in Adriatic Region, Workforce Transformation Partner of the Year in Croatia 2019 UDS CEE Partner of the Year
- KING ICT Sarajevo also received a Dell award: Channel Partner of the Year in BiH
- We entered into a higher circle of partnership, the Fujitsu Select Circle, and it is important to note that this advancement is not acquired, but is obtained exclusively by invitation of Fujitsu.
- We received the Croatian Security Grand Prix award from the Croatian Association of Security Managers for achievements in creating and developing security in the Republic of Croatia, where KING ICT was awarded in the category “Best security systems project” for its multifunctional perimeter security system upgrade for the APIS IT premises
- We became a Silver UiPath Business Partner – this status was achieved through the acquisition of competencies for modernisation and transformation of operations using Robotic Process Automation
- We renewed our SAP REx status for Utilities
- We attained the status of SAP Recognized Expertise in the field of Travel and Transportation
- We re-entered the SAP Cloud Focus Partner Initiative, where SAP facilitates its partners in the sale and implementation of SAP cloud solutions and the development of in-house products based on SAP Cloud Platform technologies
- We renewed our status of SAP Partner Center of Expertise, for the first time with the automatic extension of the PCoE certificate, based on our excellent results in our regular quarterly measurement of KPIs
- We received the recognition of being a SAP Cloud Partner 2019 for sales results in the past year
- We acquired two new VMware Master competencies: Master Service Data Center Virtualization, Master Service Network Virtualization
- We received the recognition ‘Friend of Students’ at the Golden Index ceremony, which recognises companies that successfully cooperate with the student community
KING ICT INITIATIVE
Due to the pandemic, this year King’s conference Open Integration Day and the Change Con programmer’s conference were not held. However, despite the limited conditions, the KING ICT Summer Academy was held, for the first time as an online edition. In this Academy, participating students received free education and a paid internship, and the opportunity to learn from experienced mentors, the King experts. The student team developed an application called King Team Gifts that resolved the challenges of organising internal events. We are particularly pleased that four of these students have stayed on and become employees of KING ICT.
The KING Knowledge Centre was presented as a newly opened education centre aimed at promoting the newest knowledge and skills in the field of SAP technologies.
We held the first online edition of the Girls in ICT days, where King’s female experts held a webinar entitled “What I would tell the 17-year-old me”, to support girls and young women in becoming acquainted with and achieving a career in the ICT world.
CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
Never has a business year ended at KING ICT without a charity aspect, and this year was no exception to the rule, even though it was specific in so many ways. Of the many socially responsible activities, we would like to emphasise those that meant most to us.
In the midst of the pandemic, KING ICT donated funds to the Red Cross and equipment to the Dr. Fran Mihaljević Infectious Diseases Clinic. King also donated equipment to the Dr. Andrija Štampar Public Health Teaching Unit.
The company continued to promote STEM fields, and provided financial support to the RoboBrač Society for the promotion of new technologies. KING ICT is also the proud sponsor of the project “The Scientist in Me!” organised by the Together for Knowledge initiative, a joint venture by the Educateam and Društva za edukaciju van okvira (Out-of-the-box Education Society). This is a science communication competition for secondary school students that promotes the importance of investing in knowledge and learning from an early age.
DESPITE THE CHALLENGES, WE ARE BUILDING A DIGITAL FUTURE
The year behind us placed numerous challenges at our feet, and showed the true strength, expertise and quality of the KING ICT community. Our partners and clients are an essential part of this community, and their expertise, proper assessments and timely decisions enabled us to join forces to overcome the challenges of 2020.
In looking ahead, as the regional leader in the creation and implementation of innovative solutions, we will continue to create a digital and connected future. Motivated by knowledge, progress and the satisfaction of our employees, partners and clients, we are working tirelessly to blaze the trail to a digital tomorrow, for our generation and for those to come.