PETOŠEVIĆ PEOPLE: Q&A with Ivan Matić
Senior Associate Ivan Matić has been part of the PETOŠEVIĆ Serbia team for over 10 years. Ivan works with the Serbian customs, police and market inspectorate authorities on the surveillance, seizure and destruction of counterfeit goods and also handles clearance, maintenance and enforcement issues concerning international trademark portfolios. We asked Ivan about his work, his favorite food, his pastimes, and much more.
How did you start your career in the IP field?
It actually happened by accident. After finishing my studies at the Faculty of Law, I attended the School for Officers in Reserve at the Military Academy, and when I started looking for work afterwards, I was offered a job at the Intellectual Property Protection Department of the Serbian Customs. Customs protection of IP rights was new in Serbia at the time; I found it interesting, and here I am now!
What is the most challenging aspect of your work?
Handling various enforcement matters for different clients in multiple jurisdictions, at the same time.
What do you most enjoy doing at work?
Getting the work done. Enforcement cases are usually not too complicated, but they do come unexpectedly, so you may receive a large number of seizure notifications from various jurisdictions and for different clients in one day. It is then a question of working fast in order to manage all of them and accommodate clients’ needs, which sometimes vary from client to client.
What would you be working in, if you weren’t working in IP?
I have never really thought of that. I would probably work in another field of law, perhaps in commercial law.
What was the first job you’ve ever had?
My first real job was a customs inspector in the IP Protection Department of the Serbian Customs. Before that, during my studies, I volunteered for several months at the Child Rights Centre in Belgrade.
What is your favorite thing to do when you are not working?
Nowadays, it is spending time with my two-year-old daughter and my family, which is pretty much all I do now – baby, mom and dad time all day long! Everybody with toddlers will know what I am talking about. Other than that, I like going to football matches to watch my favorite team, Red Star Belgrade, former European and Intercontinental Cup champion, back in 1991. I have a lot of friends and having coffee with them on Saturdays or Sundays is a must.
What book did you read last?
I don’t really remember. I am usually too tired to read when the day is over. The last book I started, when the baby was born, was “The Sword of Justice” by Leif G. W. Persson. I have enjoyed Scandinavian authors in the past, like Jo Nesbo.
What is your favorite song/music at the moment?
“Mia” by Bad Bunny feat. Drake. Mia is the name of my baby girl, and even though the lyrics of the song have nothing to do with the name Mia, I like listening to this one now.
What is your favorite dish of all time?
Pizza and all kinds of Serbian ground meat delicacies, like ćevapčići, pljeskavica, uštipci, but also burgers, etc.
If you could meet anyone in the world, from the past or present, who would it be and why?
Well, I am not that much into having idols. I have never really had one, except maybe Dragan Stojković Piksi when I was young, who was the best Red Star football player I have ever watched play, and I got to meet him!
What was your favorite subject in school and why?
English, because I was good at it at the time (my grandmother was an English language professor) and physical education, because I enjoy playing football, which is pretty much all we did in elementary school during PE classes.
What did you want to be when growing up?
I wanted to be a Red Star football player, but trainings would have taken too much time out of school, and my family did not really like that. I started playing basketball instead, and I am only 180cm tall (5’11)!
Tell us three things most people don’t know about you.
I used to go out a lot – clubs, cafes, restaurants, you name it.
I love skiing – I would trade two weeks of a summer holiday for one week of skiing anytime.
I regret not learning more foreign languages (apart from English and basic French), because it seems I am good at it. Whenever I travel, I try to pick up a few basic words and lines and try using them when I am in that specific country.
If you could learn to do anything, what would it be?
I’d like to learn to cook all kinds of dishes, not everyday meals, but specialties from all around the world. No fish, though, I do not like fish or seafood.
What is your biggest frustration about the world around you?
There are no frustrations as long as we are healthy, can enjoy family and friends, and meet our living expectations or have an “acceptable” level of living.
What is the most important thing you have learned in the last five years?
To be patient with kids. I started learning two years and three months ago and I am still learning.
What do you wish you could have told yourself at age 13?
I don’t even remember what I was doing then! I don’t know, maybe I would tell myself to be patient, and that everything will be okay.
What cities/countries have you lived in?
I have always lived in Belgrade, Serbia.
If you could live in another country of the 30+ countries where PETOŠEVIĆ operates, which would you pick and why?
Maybe I would pick Budapest, Hungary. I went there as a tourist and I liked the city, it has a lot of similarities with Belgrade. It’s vibrant, it has a river and people are open; well, that is my tourist recollection of Budapest at least.
If someone came to your city for 24 hours, where would you take them?
I would take everyone to Kalenić, an old restaurant in the Vračar area of Belgrade, near the open-air Kalenić greenmarket. This restaurant serves local cuisine, and you can see all kinds of different people there: locals just drinking rakija and beer, young people enjoying a good meal before going out at night, or well-known writers, journalists and politicians discussing current topics. My friends and I always gather there before an important match to celebrate the expected win in advance! I would also take visitors to Bucko, a pizza place where the classic is a pizza slice with a beef and cream salad on top – a Belgrade street food specialty.
Read more PETOŠEVIĆ People interviews.