My professional path is the result of my deep belief and firm commitment to certain values and behaviour – hard and honest work, curiosity to understand ‘why’ and learn ‘how’, and persistence – coupled with the privilege of working for a company that embraces those values and embodies them in its internal culture.
I am a lawyer by education, having completed my MA studies at the Belgrade Faculty of Law. As a young professional, I spent some time in the academic environment studying international law. My first practical experience came with a decision to take on a role serving the U.S. Treasury and the World Bank, enriched later with leadership experience on international projects. All this prepared me well for what has so far been a 14-year career with one of the largest international companies in the World – Philip Morris International (PMI). From March 2003 until today, I have grown though nine different positions – from Corporate Affairs Executive in charge of Serbia, to my current role as Managing Director for Southeast Europe, where I am in charge of a large organisation and highly complex business on six regional markets. For me, a sense of personal fulfillment comes hand in hand with the pride of achieving great business results, which my team continues to deliver year on year. I owe most of my success and satisfaction to the fact that I work with professionals of the highest calibre – both at the international level and here in Southeast Europe. Together we persistently grow, learn, discover and celebrate new highs.
PMI is a company that respects all those values upon which I have based my professional life – hard and honest work, intellectual curiosity and embracing challenges
Our high today is called IQOS, a breakthrough innovation in the tobacco industry! It is very exciting to be a first-hand witness and proud contributor to the bold and decisive transformation of PMI from a traditional cigarette manufacturer to a modern and dynamic company promoting a smoke-free world, as heralded by IQOS. The magnitude of this transformation is largely reflected in symbols: while the traditional PMI stronghold brand Marlboro was associated for years with the “macho” cowboy, today the symbol of IQOS, PMI’s product for the 21st century, is a hummingbird, a delicate being which takes only the nectar out of the plant on which it feeds, leaving the nature untouched.
What is IQOS? It is a device leveraging the breakthrough heat control technology that is used with specially designed tobacco Heat- Sticks. Real tobacco is heated and not burned, and the consumer gets the nicotine and the taste of real tobacco, but without smoke, without ash, without the unpleasant smell or negative impacts on the environment. Actually, IQOS retains all that smokers enjoy and eliminates most of the things that bother both them and non-smokers alike.
The level of pride and excitement that I feel about IQOS could hardly be described in words. What I find most important – I believe in IQOS with all of my heart. I am fascinated, not only professionally but also personally, by this potentially less harmful, and certainly better, alternative to cigarettes. I and many of my colleagues, along with more than 1.8 million people worldwide who are former smokers, are now in a pursuit of a smoke free world.