Exclusive Interview with Mr. Emir Granov – A Unique Insight by a Key Regional Investor
For more than 20 years, Emir Granov has been one of the crucial businessmen in Sarajevo, a city that is synonymous with diversity, and it is probably that diversity that best describes our collocutor – from a football player and representative of the BiH national team to the owner of one of the most prominent fashion brands for men in the region and Europe, to the investor of the hotel Monti and business – residential buildings, and also a co-owner in one of the leading delivery platforms Korpa which is doing business on the markets of Bosnia and Herzegovina and North Macedonia.
You inherited the fashion business from your parents and grew from a small craft – workshop, to become a well-known regional brand. So, tell us more about your beginnings and the journey to the present?
I come from a family which was associated with the textile businessfor generations. I approached the production process at the early stage because my father dealt with the production and processing of leather, and later on with the textile business. However, my first love was football and after years of successful sports career during which I was a member of the national team of BiH, I played in Hungary, Portugal and Spain, it was a difficult decision to make, to stop the professional sports career and to continue the family tradition which was built by my family for generations. Namely, the story about Granoff is a story about football because the goal was the same and that is to reach the top. I left the top of the sports in 2003 when I started the journey to the top of the fashion brand Granoff.
This year Granoff celebrates 20 years of its existence. What is it that you are most proud of when we speak about Granoff and which markets are you present?
There is a lot of work, will, effort and sacrifice behind the well-recognized and successful brand Granoff. Ever since the very beginning, we were dedicated to one particular target group of buyers and we remained loyal to that – buyers who have a very distinguished taste and know how to recognize quality. Quality and design are exactly what launched Granoff to the position of a leader. The quality of the fabrics is measured in microns – the lower number of microns in a thread, the better the quality of the fabric. The company Granoff is the best-known domestic brand with a retail chain of fashion shops in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Montenegro.It is positioned as an affordable luxury brand of a very recognizable quality and fashion style which follows global fashion trends and brings them to domestic and regional markets. The long tradition of the company Granoff ensures continuity, consistent market presence, and interesting fashion choices and it completely corresponds to fashion trends that can be found in the European market and around the world. On the market of Bosnia and Herzegovina, we are present at seven locations, in Serbia we opened our shop in the exclusive shopping centre Galerija which is located within the complex Belgrade on Water and weproudly emphasize our shop in the market of Montenegro is placed in Porto Montenegro.
Through its offer, Granoff attracts several domestic and international buyers, whereas the inside decoration and design of shops sets an example of how a domestic company may and needs to be competitive with other global trends.
Besides the fashion industry, you stand out as one of the most successful investors in the region. Tell us something more about your achievements to date?
The very step forward into investments I started with the first residential building in Sarajevo, Bolgrano. Then followed the construction and opening of the first amusement park with the alpine coaster Sunnyland in the vicinity of Sarajevo, on the Olympic mountain of Trebevic. By the end of 2020, at a time when we faced the biggest challenges caused by the Covid pandemic, we opened the hotel Monti on the mountain of Igman. Shortly after opening, we stood out as the leader in the area of mountain tourism and we proudly emphasize that the biggest proof of our success is that our guests keep coming back. That was followed by the project for our future – the Park Residence, the building placed in the very heart of Sarajevo on the mild hill with a phenomenal view of the whole city. Through this project, we create a harmonious unity which is unique and will place Sarajevo on the world’s map of luxurious living. Our vision is to create a comfortable living ambience, where the residents will dispose of the premium living concept, a place to enjoy, spend more of their free time and create quality life habits. Future residents of the Park Residence will enjoy a variety of joint contents dedicated to them exclusively, and, inter alia, an indoor swimming pool, spa and fitness centre, indoor multifunctional space for sports activities, indoor and outdoor playgrounds, inside cinema room, concierge and bellboy services, valet parking etc. The planned completion of the construction is by the end of 2025, and for a great reason, we say that the Park Residence is a true home, and home is our most important address.
What were the most important achievements in 2022?
In 2022, the most important thing was the beginning of construction of the biggest and the most luxurious residential business complex in BiH, which is the Park Residence. The only right way to do it was to get surrounded by the people as well as companies in our way of realization of this project. Our priority is to achieve a high standard of urban living in the very heart of Sarajevo and we observe the progress of works with great joy. During the past year, we celebrated two years since the opening of the Hotel Monti, and with constant investment in improving the quality of service; we secured a leading position in the middle category hotels. We also acquired the location of the former Hotel Igman on the mountain of the same name, which is truly synonymous with the Winter Olympic Games in Sarajevo in 1984. The mountain and the Igman Hotel are ideal places to enjoy the nature and culture of the destination itself, and we will undoubtedly do everything to become a favourite destination throughout the year, and not only in the winter season. We are developing the entire project out of love for the mountains and our goal is to provide an ideal location to escape from the noise and bustle of the modern city, where we will offer peace and phenomenal mountain facilities that will provoke the imagination, feed the soul and motivate you to come again. We are planning to build a wellness and fitness centre, a spa centre, a children’s playground, a restaurant, multifunctional areas and areas for sales facilities, a congress hall, and a winter square, and as for outdoor activities, we are planning to develop hiking, mountain biking, outdoor spa, fitness yoga in nature and many other contents. We are finalizing the conceptual solution for the new hotel and we have left the conductor’s baton to our undisputed architect and artist Amir Vuk Zec, who will sign the project and whose main task is to turn the Olympic beauty into a true tourist destination that will stand side by side with the popular Austrian and Italian ski resorts. In 2022, we completed works on renovation and reconstruction of the historic building in the very heart of Sarajevo, which is an administrative building of our group but at the same time a sales centre for the Park Residence, the first one of that kind in the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina where we provide to the clients a new dimension in the presentation of the building. Our delivery platform Korpa.ba, ended 2022 as the absolute leader in BiH with over 70% of the share in the market, whereas Korpa Macedonia for the first year of its business operations achieved all rewards and we especially emphasize the best application in 2022.
” Our vision is to create a
comfortable living ambience, where
the residents will dispose of the
premium living concept, a place to
enjoy, spend more of their free time
and create quality life habits.”
Today, after 20 years of doing business, when you look back, what were the most difficult elements you overcame – were you imagining your road just as it was or would you change something?
There is a saying that it is easy to reach the top, but it is difficult to stay there. I think it is difficult to reach THE top and even more difficult to stay there. When it comes to business, I am very persistent and I don’t take NO for an answer. Persistency and continuous work bring us to
the success and recognition we seek. The pillars on the basis on which I form my partnership relations are capability, responsibility, persistence, consistency, reliability and loyalty. Behind all the so far achieved success there is a dedicated team of people without which none of this would have happened. Inevitably, in the past 20 years, there were difficult moments, and challenges too, which could have been resolved only by hard work, and now, when I evaluate that road, I am sure I would not change a thing.
What are your future plans?
Because we have already been recognized as successful implementers of previous projects, it is our goal that through the next projects, we keep the trust of our partners and clients through the high construction and implementation quality and provision of flawless service.
Crni Vrh 12, 71000 Sarajevo
+387 33 844 500
+387 61 222 333