Over the past few years, IT has become one of the fastest-growing economic sectors in Serbia. The value of IT exports has reached nearly EUR1.5 billion, with IT services being offered by over 2,000 companies employing tens of thousands of people. High level of professionalism of both IT experts and employees in this sector might be described as the most prominent feature of the Serbian IT landscape. The tree biggest IT centres in Serbia are located in Belgrade, Novi Sad, and Niš.
Ingsoftware from Niš is among the companies founded in a garage—like many of the global IT giants. “We launched the company from the garage and now we have 73 employees, with sales representatives in Austria, the US, Switzerland, and Zimbabwe. We have clients in the US, Australia, and Europe. Instead of going abroad or finding a job in a major corporation, we thought we could try and do something great in our city,” says Dušan Stojković, CFO at Ingsoftware doo from Niš.
As the workload grew, we had to hire new developers, expand our premises, and purchase new equipment. The European Union has several programmes aimed at supporting entrepreneurs in Serbia and Ingsoftware has been granted money out of EU PRO. “Thanks to the EU, our IT experts have received 28 fully equipped workstations. This assistance made doing business much easier as it enabled us to solve some key financial problems by freeing up space to invest in other things. So, we used our money to hire four new people and invest in new premises,” Stojković noted
Serbian IT companies are engaged in the so-called provision of software development services to foreign clients, but they are also working on their own products that yield far greater profit. “In the beginning, we were focused on software development for foreign business clients, such as mobile banking or online gold markets. Since 2018, we started developing our own products. One of them is FamiliPay, launched a couple of months ago. We also have a gaming studio with several games in the making,” Stojković explained.
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Ambasador Sem Fabrizi je prošle nedelje posetio Niš i NICAT Klaster. Kao jedni od učesnika projekta #EUzaTebe koji organizuje Evropski Progres, sastali smo se sa njim u Think Innovative. Imali smo priliku da mu predstavimo naše poslovanje i ukažemo mu na značaj podrške koje Evropska Unija pruža kompanijama u Srbiji. Nakon našeg sastanka gospodin Sem je izjavio na tviteru da je impresioniran Srpskim preduzetnicima i ponosan što im EU pruža podršku. . . . . . EU Ambassador Mr. Sem Fabrizi visited Niš and NICAT Klaster. As participants of the #EUzaTebe project organized by Evropski Progres, Ingsoftware, together with Badin Soft and Softelm met with Mr. Fabrizi in Think Innovative. We had the honor to represent our company and point out the significance of EU support. After the meeting, Mr. Fabrizi said on Twitter that he was impressed with this meeting and with the stories from business tech entrepreneurs from Niš.
In cooperation with a client from the US, our company came up with the idea to develop an app for single parents—FamiliPay. The app allows parents to decide how much time the child will spend with each of them and to share costs. “The original idea was to decide how much time the child spends with each of the parents using the app. Soon, we learned there was plenty of room for improvement, so we included child support payments. The app can automatically charge money from both parents’ accounts and send it to the third party that pays for the service. In the US, it is pretty common to go through multiple divorces and this app takes this into account, calculating expenses for several marriages and children,” says Stojković. The company has great expectations from this app and intends to put it on markets in European countries as well.
The biggest challenges of IT concern the lack of experts and a constant increase of labour costs. “Over the past couple of years, costs of labour have been steadily increasing due to a shortage of developers. We are also witnessing the phenomenon of recruiters. People recruit developers from other companies, universities, even those who want to reskill in order to start a career in IT. High demand for developers has led to the increase of salaries that are now, basically, at the European level. As a result, we are forced to raise prices which, in turn, decreases our competitiveness. Good developers are becoming increasingly hard to find. We have no use of new projects if we are unable to finish them because clients don’t want to wait. Developers from India and China are our biggest competitors, but we rely on quality reflected in our excellent IT experts,” Stojković said.