Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Freight Group Opens New Balkans Logistics Hub for Road Haulage and Air and Sea Transport

Ten Million Euro Investment Sees Fifty Percent Staff Increase
Shipping News Feature

BULGARIA – International freight and logistics company Gebrüder Weiss, officially opened its new distribution centre for the Balkans and Central Asia, in Musachevo/Elin Pelin, near the Bulgarian capital of Sofia, last week. Having invested over €10 million in the site to replace the previous hub in Sofia, Gebrüder Weiss is currently planning direct services to its sites in Turkey and Georgia and is developing transport solutions using road haulage and air and sea freight connections to other countries in Central Asia and further afield.

The new logistics centre fulfils some of the highest technical standards and comprises 6,000 square metres of logistics facilities, 1,880 square metres of handling areas and 1,300 square metres worth of office space. The new building allowed staff numbers to increase from 60 to around 90 employees on site and the space is designed to provide scope for further growth in the coming years. Marieta Grigorova, Country Manager at Gebrüder Weiss Bulgaria, said:

"At the Elin Pelin site we are offering the entire Gebrüder Weiss service portfolio. This ranges from overland transports via air and sea freight to individual logistics solutions. Here, too, all services will be provided according to the familiar high quality standards of Gebrüder Weiss."

In view of the moderate economic growth in Bulgaria, the company says that it is satisfied with its business operations at this location and, due to Gebrüder Weiss' established Eastern European network, orders have shown positive development over the last few years. In the last year alone the number of consignments increased by 35%. International and domestic customers from the mechanical engineering and IT sectors in particular use the Bulgarian site as a regional distribution centre. Thomas Moser, Regional Manager South East/CIS at Gebrüder Weiss said:

"The new terminal in Elin Pelin is intended to serve as a central distribution centre for the Balkan region and for transports toward Central Asia. In addition to being ideally situated with regard to transport connections, above all it will offer more space for the logistics business and help to drive forward the current expansion in these regions. The Bulgarian market has proved to be a stable factor in earlier periods of economic difficulty. We are investing in the long term and assume that Bulgaria will be able to adapt quickly to each new situation."

Gebrüder Weiss has been operating in the country since 1993, and the Bulgarian arm now makes 70% of its turnover from domestic and international overland transports. In addition, the last three to four years have seen warehouse logistics and air and sea freight gain in importance. Before the new terminal in Elin Pelin was completed, the location in Sofia operated as a groupage freight hub for transports to Turkmenistan.