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I've been following Pliva in the news for months. Pliva, a pharmaceutical concern with $1.1 billion in revenues and 6,600 employees, has been the subject of a takeover battle between two suitors; Barr Pharmaceuticals (USA) and Actavis Group (Iceland). So, why am I bothering visiting Pliva since it'll soon be just a subsidiary? Past experiences. Over the years quite a few companies have been crossed off my list to be visited after a merger was announced. However, months later I'd then read where the merger was called off for one reason or another. So, I've learn that it's not officially official until all the final documents have been signed and, the fat lady sings.

Pliva's eight-story headquarters can be found on Ulica Grada Vukovara, Zagreb's wide thoroughfare that seems to be the location of choice for businesses. The building's granite façade looks impressive but the rear of the structure butts up to an unsightly railroad freight yard. Two receptionist man the reception counter and before answering any questions they want to see identification so, I pull out my passport and watch as they copy information off of it. This identification request must be standard procedure as it has happened at every company visited in Croatia. I explain mailing a letter of introduction a month ago to CEO Zeljko Covic and ask if his secretary can be called to find out where or with whom my letter ended up with. After making several calls the receptionist hands over the phone and I talk with a woman in corporate communications. The woman says she checked around and no one knows anything about my letter. I ask if someone would have a few minutes to meet with me but am told it isn't possible. Jeez, there's something fishy going on here in Zagreb as every company visited claims to not have received my letter of introduction. Could this be true or is it the Croatian way things are done?

Company website: www.pliva.com