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Abstract

Due to squeezed public budgets in both developing and developed countries, the governments’ policy often include privatization of public plant breeding institutes as a proposed solution to the problem. Since vast of commercial plant cultivars have been developed by conventional breeding techniques, the interest for acquiring such institutions raised over the last several decades. However, not much attention has been paid to developing competitive business strategy within the public Institutes so the customers and society may still benefit from the both its value proposition and public good. At the Osijek Agricultural Institute, Croatia, an early developed focus-and-customer-relationship competitive business strategy has always been a linchpin that could financially and technically underpin plant breeders’ education, development of new cultivars and improvement of plant science in the Pannonia region of southeastern Europe. Not less important, this kind of strategy that rely much on personal connection with the customers results better in both - their buying experience and our price positioning in the seed market. It seems that, besides pure transaction, the customers especially appreciate every contact that cannot be found online. Every improvement in this segment of customers’ captivity is crucial and therefore of utmost importance for keeping our business strategy competitive, sustainable and enhanced. The example of the Osijek Agricultural Institute that is presented in this paper shows that regardless of being for-profit entity such as a public owned or private research institute, knowledge on choosing and pursuing a proper business strategy is a point of paramount importance, i.e. it is the question of life or death for every kind of market oriented entity.

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