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f+h Intralogistics 4/2015

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f+h Intralogistics 4/2015


GLOBAL BUSINESS Hellmann expands into eastern European market despite crisis A reduced number of consignments, increasing transport costs and longer transit times − transport services in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) are clearly feeling the effects of the tense political situation in parts of eastern Europe. Surely this is a good enough reason to stop any planned investments in this region and to concentrate on prospering markets? The conflict in Ukraine and the continuing economic sanctions against Russia make it more difficult for logistic companies to operate within the market of the former Soviet states. However, Hellmann East Europe, a subsidiary company of Hellmann Worldwide Logistics, based in Osnabrück, Germany, that specializes in the eastern European and CIS market, evaluate the situation differently and believe that there are more opportunities than risks. The logistics service provider, based in Hanau, Germany, and managed by Michael Mihm (Image on right) and Patrick Nathe (Image on left), is thus pursuing a consistent expansion strategy in the eastern European market. The company hopes this will further optimize its own network in the area and generate new business opportunities. Strong allies The initial step towards the strategic expansion was already implemented in February 2015. The company formed a joint venture with partner Engemann & Co. GmbH, based in Hilden, Germany, that provides combined transport services from the German economic region of North Rhine-Westphalia to the Baltic states, Russia, and Ukraine. The joint venture that trades under the name of Engemann East GmbH & Co. KG. is meant to clearly indicate the significance of eastern European transport services and represent a stance against the crisis. Hellmann East Europe is also implementing growth strategies in other former Soviet states. Two branches have been opened in Almaty and Atyrau, in Kazakhstan, since March 2015. Business in Kazakhstan has not particularly been affected by the crisis in Ukraine and strict economic sanctions against Russia, although these factors have not gone completely unnoticed. However, the situation relating to businesses in Russia and Ukraine is much more serious, while such challenges in the eastern European and CIS markets are nothing new. In 2008, for example, the year after Hellmann East Europe was founded, the company had to deal with the repercussions of the global financial crisis in the above-mentioned economic area. The experience gained during that period has helped the company face the current situation with foresight and reason. Mindset of “now more than ever” Hellmann East Europe is facing the current crisis with confidence. Managing Director, Patrick Nathe, believes that while there are still customers that the company is not completing work for, there is no such thing as a crisis but opportunities. The large domestic market in the CIS states, continued purchasing power of the general public, and ambitious public investment programs have en- 12 f+h Intralogistics 4/2015

GLOBAL BUSINESS sured that functional logistical networks to and from Europe are indispensable. In view of exports from Europe falling, the logistics service provider is, in the meantime, relying on rail transport between China and Russia in addition to the sea freight sector to compensate for the reduction in business between “old Europe” and Russia. Extensive portfolio About Hellmann Hellmann Worldwide Logistics GmbH & Co. KG is a global logistics service provider based in Osnabrück, Germany. With its worldwide network with 19,300 people, the family-run company operates in 157 countries. The service portfolio includes the transport of goods by road, rail, ship, and plane, as well as sector-specific IT solutions, warehousing, consulting, and disposal services. In 2014, the company generated a turnover of around three million euro. The subsidiary, Hellmann East Europe, based in Hanau, Germany, is a specialist logistics service provider for the successor states of the former Soviet Union. With 25 years of experience in activities on the ground, Hellmann East Europe provides logistics services for all modes of transport, as well as the necessary customs-related and regional knowledge regarding CIS states. Until the annexation of Crimea and the resulting sanctions against Moscow, business in the growth markets of eastern Europe and notably Russia flourished for a long time – with everyone believing it to be one of the global future markets specifically for mechanical engineering companies and automotive manufacturers. Like a lot of other logistics service providers, Hellmann East Europe was able to benefit from the boom years of the recovered Russian market. The company has branches in nine time zones and now has more than 450 employees, one hundred of which are based in Germany alone. In addition to its German locations in Hanau, Lehrte, Hilden, Stuttgart, Dresden, Osnabrück, and Augsburg, the company also operates a further 31 branches in the successor states of the former Soviet Union. The company’s main focus is based in Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, the Baltic states, and Central Asia. Classic haulage services including land, rail, and intermodal freight transport, as well as air and sea freight solutions, are the main focus of the business. Special and project-specific transport services are also an important part of the service portfolio. The company also offers special services, such as “Hellmann Tamozhenny Broker” that handles all customs-related services from analyzing export documents, to creating customs declarations, as well as communicating and controlling the flow of information with customs authorities. The portfolio is rounded off with a package of industry solutions for the automotive industry, amongst others. The service provider completes all of the logistic process for its automotive customers. The services for the automotive industry include inbound routes to Saint Petersburg, Kaluga, Elabuga, Naberezhnye Chelny, and Samara/Togliatti, as well the consolidation of more than 350 suppliers from around the world. Hellmann East Europe is also responsible for all logistic distribution services in Russia, as well as all European lessthan-truckload (LTL), full-truck-load (FTL) and short-sea processes, and global overseas processes for the air and sea freight sector. The portfolio is rounded off with FTL and full-container-load (FCL) cross trade services via Vostochny, Saint Petersburg, the Baltic ports, Kotka, and ports in the Black Sea. With its strategic expansion plans and forward-looking services, Hellmann East Europe believe that it is not only wellequipped to overcome the current market crisis but to emerge stronger from it. The Managing Directors Mihm (right) and Nahte believe there are more opportunities than risks in the eastern European market company therefore has further plans to invest in its service network. Two further German branches are going to be developed in Augsburg and Hamburg in 2015, while a further location will also be established in the Kazakh capital, Astana. Hellmann East Europe hope that these measures will make the most of opportunities that have been identified despite the current crisis. Photos: Lead photo Fotolia/processing: VFV Grafik, photo p. 13 Hellmann f+h Intralogistics 4/2015 13


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