• January 20, 2012
  • 249

Polish Enterprise Forum „Crown” initiates its activity

An association named Polish Enterprise Forum „Crown” was registered in December last year. The Forum groups together companies that run their business in Lithuania, led by entrepreneurs of Polish origin.

The Forum was established by following companies: UAB VISLA, UAB KLION, UAB DIURABLIS, UAB EugenSA, UAB Kopel, UAB Inviktus, UAB Saločiai and UAB Jarunda.

Management of the Forum, consisting of three people, was appointed during the general meeting of founders. The following people were selected: Alicja Monkiewicz, Ryszard Ejlak and Zygmunt Klonowski. Zygmunt Klonowski became the chairman of the board. The entrepreneurs associated with the Polish Enterprise Forum „Crown” do not only intend to focus on development plans for Vilnius Region, but also aim to promote cooperation between businesses from Poland and Lithuania, implementation of new manufacturing and IT technologies, as well new, innovative management methods.

According to their views, thanks to realisation of afore mentioned goals, everyone would benefit, and not only the enterprises and companies associated with the Forum. The Forum also plans to undertake activities aiming at gaining investment from Poland and contribute to their implementation.

Criteria for entrance of new members were decided during the general meeting on 17th January, as well as Forum financing rules were set through determination of registration fee and membership fee. Works on the Forums’ business plan for the first half of 2012 were also initiated during the session.

It was agreed that companies wishing to become members of the Forum have to acquire three recommendations from members of the Association “Crown” and they have to be approved by the assembly majority of votes. The activity of the Forum will be financed from membership and registration fees.

As a result of the proceedings, it was decided that the Forum’s logo will be designed. It was said that the prize of 500 litas will be given to a person, who submits the best proposal for a logo and the internet website for the Forum. Works on development of the concept of business strategy for the Forum are also about to start.

Before the next general meeting, each member is obliged to present its proposal concerning the business plan and promotion strategy for the Forum. Information about the activities of the Forum will be passed to media.

Besides, members of the „Crown” have decided that ordinary meetings of members will be held at least once in a month. Sessions will be run at the Home of Polish Culture in Vilnius on Mondays – start of meetings– 4pm.

The date for the next session of members has been set for 30th January 2012.


Mini-interview with Ryszard Kowalski, I Counsellor, Head of the Department of Promotion of Trade and Investment at the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Vilnius.

Mr Counsellor, Polish Enterprise Forum „Crown” was registered in last days of the previous year. What do you think about this initiative?

I do not hide my satisfaction that such Forum was created. I have persuaded a group of entrepreneurs to this project for quite some time. For us, as a Section, it is easier to cooperate with business organisations rather than with individual companies. It is easier to reach them with information, offer of cooperation etc. Not without the significance is the fact that members of the Forum are corporate bodies, namely enterprises and companies, and not private persons.

Does your Department plan to support the newly established organisation, if yes, in what ways?

This is an accurate description – to support, not to take patronage over, supervise or sponsor. As I understand, the Forum is an organisation of economic self-government, completely independent. And it will give a support to the extent that entrepreneurs might need: information, economic consulting, and facilitation of contacts with the Polish market. I think this is not the last information about the Forum and in the future we will be able to indicate an area of cooperation with the Forum more precisely.

The interview was carried out by Witold Janczys

Ryszard Ejlak: „We will act together on one, common front”

Interview with Ryszard Ejlak, member of the board of the Polish Enterprise Forum „Crown”

What is the Polish Enterprise Forum „Crown”?

The initiative to establish the Forum was proposed to us, Lithuanian entrepreneurs of Polish nationality, by Ryszard Kowalski, I Counsellor, Head of the Department of Promotion of Trade and Investment at the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Vilnius. I must admit that the idea was interesting to us. During one of the meetings at our local business-club, we spoke about the initiative of the I Counsellor and we reached the conclusion that he is right. Such organisation is missing in Lithuania.

Are other associations of entrepreneurs not providing a chance for Poles do demonstrate their activities etc?

Yes, and no. All other associations are trying to be universal. In the meantime, as the practice shows, universalism is not always good, and sometimes it can be even disappointing. Precisely, this is one of the reasons, which has convinced me and my friends to establish the Forum. In reality, there is a lot of Poles-entrepreneurs in Lithuania. However, unfortunately, we cannot always find each other in this ocean of business, get along with each other. We are simply left alone, and loneliness in business…is a first step to make our competitors gain advantage over us. We hope that thanks to the Forum, we will not be left alone, and we will act together on one, common front. Some time ago, there was a Polish-Lithuanian Economic Chamber, which was dealing with management of economic relations between Poland and Lithuania. Unfortunately, for quite some time, there has been a vacuum instead. Meanwhile, our association, in my view, is indispensable for the following reason. –A situation like this often occurs: Polish companies are looking for partners among us, they are searching for a long time, but they do not always find them on their own.  They turn for help to Polish diplomatic institutions, such as the Department of Promotion of Trade and Investment at the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Vilnius. Employees at the post also start to search, time flows again, and only later, much later, a company from Poland finds itself a partner for cooperation. And this is why there was a lack of Forum, which could come up with help to, for example, employees of the Department of Promotion of Trade and say – we will help you to find partners and establish economic relations.

So this is the goal to accomplish and the reason the Forum was established?

This is only one of the goals, which we will strive to achieve. Our aim is also to gather information about Polish business, an issue so important and significant for us. I would like to point out that when talking about Polish business, I do not mean the capital that has come to us from Poland, but the capital of our native Lithuanian origin – meaning Vilnius Poles, who run their businesses, set up own enterprises etc. etc. Next, one of basic, in fact fundamental, goals of our Forum is an activity aimed at support and help to Polish companies, here in Vilnius Region. Acting as one organisation and on the common front, we could establish much more efficient and effective economic links with other companies. For example, it is not a secret that bigger economic associations can get along more easily with carriers from logistic industry and negotiate lower prices than an enterprise or company alone. Which one of potentates would listen to requests of a single company? Maybe in the case of a really big and strong enterprise; In the meantime, associated together, we could all negotiate better terms for our affiliated companies at the Forum, and of course, what is important for us, we could exercise greater impact than previously on the economic development of Vilnius Region.

Besides, I am not going to hide that one of our big dreams is to work not to make money and enrich ourselves, but to work for people. Many of us have been in the sector for many years, moreover how much time can you earn money? After all, it is not possible to earn all the money…We are striving then for the development of our region. We are aiming to create new workplaces, implement new technologies. Anyway, it is nothing new that a man without a job is a man without money in his wallet, so a stressed and dissatisfied man. This is what we want to fight with precisely – to contribute even a little bit to reduce the number of unemployed and unhappy people in Vilnius Region, who are either on the dole or want to emigrate out of the country in search of a job.

It sounds beautiful indeed, but the accomplishment of all these goals can surely come across certain barriers…

We are well aware of the fact that we will have to tackle multiple challenges. But this is exactly the reason why the Forum was created, to tackle all challenges that we, as entrepreneurs, face in life. So we are not afraid of them, quite the opposite, we will be happy to undertake them. I believe that thanks to our work, Forum’s work, many things will change for better, not only in our lives, but perhaps, in the whole Vilnius Region.

The interview was carried out by Witold Janczys


Tłumaczenie Małgorzata Juchniewicz w ramach praktyk w Europejskiej Fundacji Praw Człowieka, www.efhr.eu. Translated by Małgorzata Juchniewicz within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.

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