the euro in the Czech Republic would make me happy.
As a consumer and citizen of the Czech Republic
I would like the rate of a Czech crown to the euro be as
positive as possible, let me say 1:20, to make products in
other countries of the EU cheaper for us, and to reduce
the economic advantage between our country and the
EU leaders. I am sitting on a fence.
How do you feel about the business environment in
our region, and what would you like to change?
It is generally quite good, not interfering with enterprise
too much. I do not prefer granted and highly organized
businesses when the managers do not care as much about
their business as about grant applications and garnering
support of some kind or other. If entrepreneurs work
with the idea that their success is exclusively their own
responsibility, they have a good plan and know who their
customers are, then it does not matter if they work in the
district of Ostrava, or elsewhere. The role of the government
of the region is to develop and enhance the infrastructure,
connectivity by all means of transport (unlike the unfortunate
recent closing of the Prague – Ostrava air connection), and
the improvement of education and vocational training. The
problem which most businesspeople in the Czech Republic
face is the lengthy construction planning and permits,
a disastrous motorway network, and slow justice. I want
to mention inefficient and expensive public administration
which is closely related to high taxation and charges paid
by freelancers as well as companies.
You are very busy in innovation and exports. How
important is the introduction of the euro to the Czech
I feel a bit schizophrenic about the Euro. I know the
exchange rate is a great tool to tip the balance on the
level of macroeconomy. On the other hand, as a CEO in
international trade, a stable exchange rate is a guarantee
of a positive business development and safe pricing; so
You are a professional in marketing, a member of
the Czech Marketing Society (Česká marketingová
společnost), and you also operate in tourism. How
do you like the marketing of the region?
Every time I am in Prague, I wonder how to get the
great crowds of tourists to the Moravian-Silesian Region,
to Štramberk in particular. The truth is that tourists see
Prague as the most attractive centre, and maybe some
would go out to see Karlštejn and Český Krumlov. It
is a challenge that requires the close cooperation of
state organizations and the motivation of Czech travel
agencies focused on incoming: they just need to list many
more destinations in their catalogues, the picturesque
Štramberk including. The Government of the Moravian
Silesian Region should be a moderator of the strategy.
However, besides our traditional majority of guests
from the Czech Republic, I also see a boom in individual
tourism which is bringing a number of tourists from all over
Europe to our hotel. The Moravian-Silesian Region and its
governor Mr Vondrák are seen and heard very well; it is
very beneficial as it supports the attractivities of Ostrava
and places of interest nearby, including Štramberk. Their
efforts go hand in hand with the regional club of Czech
Marketing Society (Česká marketingová společnost) in
Ostrava, of which I am the chairman. Its role is to facilitate
a communication platform for managers, marketers and
entrepreneurs of our region.
Are your companies socially responsible?
As their owner I keep an eye on how the companies behave in
regards to their environment. We are an active, cooperating
partner to all councils in municipalities where the plants
are situated; and to local interest and sports organizations.
ISMM is the general partner of the extra league handball
club KH ISMM Kopřivnice, and the general partner of the
football club TJ ISMM Jistebník. Generally, our programme
covers a wide range of sports, cultural, and leisure events.
I see social responsibility as the relation of the company
owner to employees, based on trust, fairness, and various
motivational programmes. This is what contributes to the
very low turnover within ISMM group, as many employees
share the visions of the company owner.
Which destination in the region would you recommend
our readers to see?
The Moravian-Silesian Region itself is an attractive
destination. The Lower Area of Vítkovice (Dolní oblast
Vítkovice), the Landek Mining Museum, our castles
Štramberk and Hukvaldy. The centre of Ostrava feels very
harmonic and is in fact quite an attraction. Compared
to its past look, modern Ostrava is a green city with
kilometres of bikeways and hiking trails. I love my region.
Thank you for the interview.
- editorial -
POSITIV 3/2019 ǀ 15