On June 25, 2022, the Hotels & Preference Hualing Tbilisi hosted the 17th Golden Brand Awards, often referred to as Georgia's business Oscars.
Organized by Global Idea and The Financial, Golden Brand is the main award for successful business projects in Georgia, voted by experts and consumers openly.
Golden Brand is an invaluable prize. It raises the reliability among consumers, makes the brand an international trademark and it is efficiently used by Georgian as well as international brands.
The project was supported by: American Stock News, international magazine; Glossy, Publika.ge, radio Commersant FM 95,5 , Radio Maestro FM 94, 7, Radio Vinili FM 99, 7, Radio M7 - FM -93.1, International Chamber of Commerce and Georgian Association of Entrepreneur Women.
Golden Brand Award Ceremony has been taking place annually since 2006 and it is recognized as the most prestigious and influential business awards in Georgia.
This year, 50 winner brands were awarded in the presence of media.
Golden Brand polls were participated by the professors-lecturers of higher educational institutions, managers, business administration specialists, consultation companies, state and non-state sector representatives, independent experts in economic issues and simultaneously, the poll was conducted among the consumers and they named the No1 Golden Brand.
The Award Ceremony always falls under a huge attention of media and business society. The journalists of different media channels had a possibility to meet the leading businessmen, the representatives of diplomatic corps, government officials, ministers and their deputies.
Top management of more than 100 largest Georgian and foreign business companies attended the award ceremony. The title Golden Brand has been awarded to companies since 2006. The Golden Brand title holders are the largest Georgian and international companies.
This year, these were the nominees in different categories:
N 1 Golden Brand winners:
Industrial Construction - No1 Golden Brand - IC Company
Development company - No1 Golden Brand - Archi
Cement Foreign Brand - No1 Golden Brand - Betek Fayfiks
Hypermarket of Construction Materials - No1 Golden Brand - Bricorama
Facing Materials - No1 Golden Brand - Allstone
Manufacture of metal products - No1 Golden Brand - K GROUP
For its contribution to the development of the cable industry - No1 Golden Brand -Sakcable
For its contribution to the development of the yachting industry - No1 Golden Brand - Azimut Yachts
Premium Car Showroom - No1 Golden Brand - Hyundai Auto Georgia
Ski Resort Hotels Chain - No1 Golden Brand - Inn Group
Outbound travel company - No1 Golden Brand - Voyager 365
Casino - No1 Golden Brand - Shangri La
Shaving products - No1 Golden Brand - Gillette
Payment Cards - No1 Golden Brand - Mastercard
Security Systems - No1 Golden Brand - Veziri
Transportation of Cargo - No1 Golden Brand - Gianti Logistics
Discovery of the Year: road projections, architecture - No1 Golden Brand - Universal Project
Heating Cooling Ventilation systems - No1 Golden Brand - Celsius
Water Pump - No1 Golden Brand - Shimge
Architectural Paints - No1 Golden Brand - Betek
Outdoor Advertising Service - No1 Golden Brand - Alma
Private School - No1 Golden Brand - European Shool
Chain of children's clothing and shoe stores - No1 Golden Brand - Bebe +
Baby skincare products - No1 Golden Brand -Weleda
Hair care (shampoo) - No1 Golden Brand - Head & Shoulders
Jewelry Store Chain - No1 Golden Brand - Franco Fontana
Beauty Industry - No1 Golden Brand - Avon
Detergents (dishwashing liquid) - No1 Golden Brand - Fairy
Pharmaceutical Company - No1 Golden Brand - PSP
Painkiller - (Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) - No1 Golden Brand - NUROFEN
Pain Reliever - Warmth - Producing Ointment - No1 Golden Brand - Kapsikam®
Complex of vitamins for children - No1 Golden Brand - Simbavit
Children’s hygienic products - No1 Golden Brand - Pampers
Artificial insemination center No1 Golden Brand - BIRTH
Medical Supplies & Equipment - No1 Golden Brand - Tbilisi Medic
Household Products - No1 Golden Brand - Melochi Zhizni
Hand soap - No1 Golden Brand - Safeguard
Sunflower Seeds - No1 Golden Brand - Solari
Chocolate - No1 Golden Brand - Milka
Meat products - No1 Golden Brand - Schirnhofer
Herbalife Nutrition Georgia /Balanced Nutrition - No1 Golden Brand - Herbalife Nutrition Georgia
Children’s Nutrition - No1 Golden Brand - Nestle
Production of Bread and Biscuits No1 Golden Brand - Madam De
Food ingredients industry - No1 Golden Brand - Doehler Georgia
Production of semi - finished products - No1 Golden Brand - Rera
Butter - No1 Golden Brand - Anchor
Chewing Gum - No1 Golden Brand – Dirol
Dental care products - No1 Golden Brand - Blend-A-Med
Tea, Foreign Brand - No1 Golden Brand - Hyleys
Detergents (washing powder) - No1 Golden Brand - Ariel
Marketing Research Company, annual organizer of Golden brand Award Ceremony and publisher of the magazine Golden Brand and business catalogue Golden Book. www.globalidea.ge
Issued by Intelligence Group since 2005. 75% of the newspaper readers are high and medium level managers. The FINANCIAL is distributed to more than 600 companies and organizations in Georgia. According to the studies, THE FINANCIAL is the most demanded newspaper in the business audience. www.finchannel.com | www.financial.ge
After successfully rebranding in 2021, Universal Project, Georgia’s leading construction project management company, with fifty years of experience and history, has begun a new life with a new name and new goals. The company has already taken impressive steps towards taking the lead, and for its success in the previous year, Universal Project has received the Golden Brand award in the category ‘Discovery of The Year’.
The company is growing and planning a number of activities in the future to do with training, simplification of design, and quality maximization.
Director of Universal Project, Lasha Chelidze, said the company actively cooperates with European companies, sharing experience, knowledge and innovations.
“As an example of such cooperation, we signed a memorandum with the Swiss company GeoBrugg, a global leader in the supply of high-tensile steel wire safety nets and mesh. Among many other important issues, this cooperation with Geobrugg includes the process of training staff to adapt their work style to European standards,” he said.
Specializing in road, water systems, architecture, and topographic works, Universal Project offers a full range of services to customers.
“Partnerships with internationally recognized companies allow the team to solve a project task of any complexity optimally and creatively,” Chelidze said.
Q. Please introduce us to Universal Project. How has the company been developed over the years?
A. The company has been operating on the market for more than fifty years, but before rebranding last year, we went by another name - Roadmap Project and Expertise.
We offer a full package of services to our clients. We guarantee any type of complex project completion with our experienced team, innovative approach, and high competency. We serve the state, large investors and any stakeholders.
Today, we at Universal Project mainly specialize in road works, water systems, projecting, and topography works. With the help of our international partnerships, such as with GeoBrugg, our team can work with complexity and widen our influence on the market.
Over the past year, the company has completed a number of private and public infrastructure design projects and dramatically strengthened its market position.
Q. Please go into more detail and tell us how many projects the company undertook last year and which of them was the most distinguished?
A. Universal Project completed more than forty projects last year in the field of roads, architecture and water pipes. The total construction cost of the projects was more than 150 million GEL.
One of the more challenging projects for us was the Metro Station Gotsiridze project. We started preparations in November 2021. After completion, Metro Station Gotsiridze became the first inclusive metro in the Caucasus, fully adapted to the needs of people with disabilities and in maximum compliance with European standards.
Q. You mentioned a recently signed memorandum with GeoBrugg. How did this cooperation come about?
A. Due to the scope of our activities, we often have to deal with geographically difficult terrain, and we work on difficult technical jobs. By signing a memorandum with GeoBrugg, both companies aim to increase the area of their activities by combining knowledge, experience and resources, and to work together on a number of private or public infrastructure projects.
We are proud that Universal Project is the only representative of GeoBrugg in Transcaucasia.
In addition, last year we had a business meeting with the French industrial group, MND France, and discussed prospects of cooperation. MND France specializes in cable mobility, snowmaking systems, mountain safety and thrill-seeking leisure infrastructures.
Q. What are the challenges Universal Project faces on the market and how do you wish the business environment would improve?
A. We are proud that the Universal Project team is staffed with highly qualified people, which simplifies the work process and raises its quality. However, finding such people in the market is quite difficult. We also try to help young people get qualifications and improve their professional skills in order to have more qualified staff on the market. We actively cooperate with the Georgian Technical University, employ excellent students, and promote their professional development. We plan to support more students as the company grows.
Once in a quarter, the Union of Construction Appraisers issues the Construction Resources Book, and basically, the project's accounting documentation is compiled according to the information given therein. The problem is that the pricing policies set out in the book are inconsistent with market data, which further poses a problem for the construction company that undertakes the project.
In addition, the demand for bidding experience of companies participating in public procurement should be tightened, as a number of companies are winning projects at low prices, which leads to a decline in quality. As a result, it becomes necessary to prepare a new project or correct an existing one.
Q. Universal Project has received the Golden Brand award for Road Design and Architecture. What does this award mean to the company?
A. We think that a responsible approach, striving for innovation, and making the right design decisions have become the indicators of our success.
We are especially pleased with the fact that Universal Project was able to complete a number of complex projects in a very short period of time after the resumption of work.
For us, receiving this award is recognition and appreciation of the hard work and enthusiasm which our team shows on a daily basis in the performance of any task.
Winning the Discovery of the Year nomination motivates us and emphasizes that the company is moving in the right direction.
In addition, we are striving to introduce new standards, technologies and innovations that will help us implement projects of national importance, and giving those in need more convenient access to facilities.
Europharma Georgia continues to take care of the health of the local population and at the same time, strengthen its position on the market. Following modern global trends and adjusting to the needs of the local medical and pharmaceutical sectors, Europharma Georgia promises to continue offering innovative pharmaceutical products and expand its product range in Georgia.
Europharma Georgia was founded in 2011. Director of the company Alisa Arslan said that Europharma Georgia has managed to compete with many experienced and famous companies in a short period of time and establish its proper place in the Georgian pharmaceutical market.
“Initially, Europharma Georgia entered the Georgian market with six drugs and several employees; today the company offers about forty drugs, and the number of employees has increased to forty-five,” Alisa Arslan said.
The main goal of Europharma Georgia is to identify the needs of consumers and to offer them “focused, unique and innovative products.”
“The company's business strategy is clearly focused on quality,” she added.
Europharma Georgia currently offers medicines that are sold in various countries around the world, including medicines, which analogues are not available in the Georgian pharmaceutical market.
“It should be noted that the company's priority is the health of the next generation, so the medical drugs for the pediatric group take one of the main places in the total lineup of the products,” Alisa Arslan said.
Europharma Georgia was valued precisely for its care for children’s health and became the winner of the Golden Brand award for the first time. Over a hundred experts and consumers named Simbavit, one of the medicines offered by Europharma Georgia, as their favorite vitamin for children.
Q. Congratulations on winning the Golden Brand. What does this award mean for Europharma Georgia?
A. Thank you very much!
For me personally, not only as a health manager, but also as a doctor, the quality of the product is a priority. Quality is what determines the effectiveness of the product, leads to a positive attitude from patients and consumer loyalty.
This is what happened in the case of Simbavit - its quality and effectiveness led the vitamin complex to become Georgian consumers’ favorite. Golden Brand is very important recognition and appreciation for our company, because it proves we are on a right way. Also, it gives us a motivation to carry on taking care of the health of all age groups and do many more positive, innovative things in the medical and pharmaceutical fields.
Q. What are the advantages of Simbavit?
A. Simbavit syrup contains thirteen vitamins and four micronutrients necessary for the development of the child's body and is enriched with beta-glucan; It is also necessary for the formation and development of eyesight, the nervous system, heart and skeletal system.
Simbavit improves metabolism, the physical and intellectual development of the child, fills any deficiency of essential vitamins and minerals, improves appetite, provides mineralization and strengthening of bones and teeth. Moreover, strengthens the protective forces of the child's body. It is a powerful antioxidant, which is especially important for today's kids who spend a lot of time with modern gadgets. Simbavit syrup is important for the prevention of childhood illness and also for rapid rehabilitation post-illness.
Its pleasant orange flavor is also popular. That's why Simbavit syrup is a favorite multivitamin for every child and parent.
Simbavit has been available on the Georgian market since 2015.
Q. Have sales increased over the year in Georgia?
A. In 2021, the number of Simbavit customers increased by almost 50%.
Q. What is the contribution of Europharma to the development of the Georgian pharmaceutical market?
A. Pharmaceuticals are one of the most important sectors in healthcare. In recent years, the global economic crisis following the pandemic and increased competition have had a major impact on the sector.
Despite these negatives, Europharma's contribution to the Georgian pharmaceutical market is huge, and since 2011 we have been importing both therapeutic and preventative pharmaceutical and herbal remedies.
Our priority is to improve the quality of life of our population. We offer our customers reliable, efficient, high-quality medicines. In a highly competitive and saturated market, we are growing and developing according to the customer requirements. Our company was the first to offer innovative formulas to consumers that did not exist in Georgia before, such as Nemolix C3, Zinconet C, Coenza QL, etc.
In the future we will continue to bring innovative products to the country, because continuous development and introducing innovations are one of the most important goals of our company.
Shimge Water Pumps Georgia has won the Golden Brand award, Georgia’s most influential and prestigious business award, often referred to as “the Oscars of the Business World”.
The company won the Golden Brand award for utmost success achieved in 2021.
“I believe that Shimge is a leader in water pumps on the Georgian market. It is a successful company. We are always focused on introducing innovations. Also, the products we offer are competitive, of high quality and available. We also offer a good service,” head of the company, Raul Khidirov, cited as reasons for the company's success.
Shimge Water Pumps Georgia won its first Golden Brand last year.
The company has been present on the Georgian market since 1998 and initially worked in the plumbing field.
“Later we added water pumps. The products we offer are extremely popular,” Khidirov says.
Shimge is a Chinese brand and, as Khidirov says, “it has its advantages compared to other, similar European brands.”
“I can definitely say that it enjoys high popularity worldwide and is not inferior to European brands in terms of quality and performance.
“At the same time, the price is affordable. The combination of high quality and lower price makes Shimge water pumps attractive for consumers,” Khidirov says.
The company offers all types of water pumps, both for domestic and industrial use, and “lways in large quantities”.
“We never stop adding innovative products,” Khidirov stated.
Shimge products are available in every region of the country; the company has branches in all large cities of Georgia.
“We easily communicate with consumers. They find us without issue and we offer them the products they need at an affordable price,” Khidirov said.
The products offered by Shimge Water Pumps Georgia include well, bore-hole, drainage, sewer, irrigation water, circulatory, fire, freshwater pumps and others.
Khidirov said that the products they offer “are increasingly popular in Georgia” and are “very competitive due to lower price and high quality.”
He stated that reliability, flexible service, affordable price and wide presence around the country has helped the company work successfully during the pandemic.
Agricultural companies and HPPs, including Enguri HPP, are among Shimge's larger clients.
Q. Which pumps are most in demand?
A. I believe that well and pressure pumps are more popular compared to other pumps due to water provision problems on the outskirts of cities.
Q. How has the pandemic affected the company?
A. The pandemic has not affected us much. We have managed to overcome the complications of the pandemic easily and have sold our products successfully.
Demand for our products did not decline during the pandemic and we ensured proper service and delivery.
Q. What is the share of online sales?
A. It is not a large share. The share of offline sales is much higher. Of course, we are present on social media and consumers have the possibility to contact us there.
However, the scale of our offline sales allows us not to be extremely active on social media or provide an online shop.
Herbalife Nutrition, a global company that has been changing people’s lives with nutrition products in Georgia for more than ten years, continues to move forward and help people live a happy life by implementing various eco-initiatives and global sustainability projects in the country.
“Herbalife Nutrition is a global expert in balanced nutrition and healthy lifestyle, and our mission is to improve nutritional habits not only in Georgia, but globally,” Senior Business Development Manager of Herbalife Nutrition, Irakli Chachanidze, said.
Herbalife Nutrition was founded in 1980, and products became available in Georgia in 2011. It is a leading global nutrition company, promoting an active and balanced lifestyle.
“We create great-tasting, science-backed nutritional products, such as meal replacement shakes, protein bars, food supplements, sports nutrition, etc. The most well-known product of our company is protein shake Formula 1 which is available in five flavors in Georgia,” Chachanidze said.
There is a Herbalife Nutrition Sales Center in Tbilisi, where it is also possible to get in touch with “Independent Members” using a special QR-code or by filling out an application on herbalife.ge.
“All our products are available exclusively through Herbalife Nutrition IMs, who support their clients in achieving their wellness goals. So our Independent Members create and run their own business with company products,” Chachanidze said.
Q. Please tell us about the first steps of Herbalife Nutrition on our national market. What path has the brand taken over the years and what position does it have on the market today?
A. Herbalife Nutrition has been officially operating in Georgia since 2011. We started with basic products and today there are several main categories presented on the market totaling more than thirty products, among which everyone can find something for their needs. And one more important point is that we give people the opportunity to becomeHerbalife Nutrition Independent Members . That means that they can run their own business with our nutrition products.
Q. Please tell us who the distributors of Herbalife Nutrition in Georgia are and what the advantage of cooperating with the company is?
A. The company employs over 10,000 people across the world, including 300 scientists, and sells products in over 90 countries. We think that a strong relationship between the company and its distributors is our core value, and that’s quite important in Georgia too. The specific feature of our business model is that in addition to the product itself, the customer receives all necessary support. We help people improve their lives by changing their dietary habits. Our Independent Members assist customers in setting goals, providing personal advice, establishing an individual nutrition plan and monitoring its implementation, taking care of their motivation. This is the advantage of our model. This is our strength.
Every year more and more young people in Georgia join the Herbalife Nutrition business. Our Independent Members are people of different professions, and of course, we are open to everyone. Some are in it for some extra income, others have made it a career. Our ‘distributor difference’ means that consumers get tailored support to help motivate them to achieve their goals. This includes providing a community which many need to make lasting lifestyle changes.
Q. What about sustainability and CSR projects?
A. Of course, CSR projects are very important for our company and we have several important projects in this field, including environmental protection, eradicating hunger, promoting sustainable development, and promoting a healthy lifestyle. We are very proud that the company has established the Children’s Charitable Foundation, which is represented all over the world and responds to the second goal of the UN Sustainable Development – “Zero Hunger”. The fund aims to eradicate hunger, bolster food security and promote improved nutrition and sustainable agriculture.
Ecology and sustainable development of the environment are also important. Eco-standards are part of the company. For instance, we have a green concept in our office. We collect, process and recycle materials. Moreover, our company is focused on developing new product packaging that will be safe, functional and environmentally-friendly. The reduction of plastic waste is an integral part of the brand’s innovative strategy. We are always improving our technologies and business processes to use less energy and resources to produce and deliver our products. As for recycling, last year we collected 47.2 kg of plastic waste with the help of our Independent Members. In 2022 they also took part in a very useful project by planting fifty trees near the Tbilisi Sea.
When it comes to healthy lifestyle and a balanced diet, of course it is important to support a variety of sports activities, which are mostly part of the charity. I’d like to mention the “Tbilisi Marathon”, in which the company has participated since 2018, and finally we broke the record with the most representative team. It is our mission to support and set an example for people in every possible way to change their lifestyles for the better.
Q. Congratulations on winning the Golden Brand award. What led the brand to this success and what does this recognition mean for you?
A. Thank you! It is a great honor for us to accept the Golden Brand Award in the category of Balanced Nutrition. Our company has won many awards for its operations, its ESG activity, and its product quality, but it’s a real pleasure for Herbalife Nutrition to receive such a significant award in Georgia for the first time.
The main element of this victory- it is of course the highest quality products and highest standards of service from our Independent Members. At the same time, for more than eleven years we have been operating in Georgia and have thousands of success stories from our clients. Such stories are the foundation of our company and give us motivation to continue development of Herbalife Nutrition on the Georgian market.
*Income and business opportunities applicable to the individuals (or examples) depicted and not average.
** Career growth means precisely the growth according to the Sales and Marketing plan of Herbalife Nutrition’.
A Georgian company specializing in procurement of high-quality stones from its quarries, Allstone, has expanded in Georgia, opening a new office and showroom to offer a larger assortment and volume of its products.
“A new office and a showroom has been opened on Beliashvili Street, in the capital city of Tbilisi. We now have a big warehouse area and machines. Our main goal is to satisfy all the requirements of our customers. The market is growing in our field, and our main goal is to offer customers a choice of high quality natural stones and services,” director of the company, Archil Khacheishvili said.
The unique design facing materials created with natural stones, excavated from Allstone’s eighteen quarries, provide a wide variety of products and guarantee an environmentally friendly natural stone selection.
Two high-tech factories operating at international standards and with the latest equipment refine the materials with maximum precision and can create any and all designs in the shortest time.
“Our team has been excavating, transforming and selling natural stone products from proprietary or exclusive quarries for more than ten years. This experience provides us with a guarantee of quality, and recognition from businesses and private customers. Our own quarries, own high-tech factories, and current location, with its simplified tax conditions, let us offer our local and international partners the best price and transportation possibilities,” Khacheishvili said.
The company takes both retail and corporate orders. The warehouse allows customers to look at a wide range of products, select any shape, size and texture of product, plan for its transportation, and carry out production, all in a short timeframe.
Allstone offers travertine, marble, mosaic, mosaic figures and cornice.
Q. Allstone has eighteen quarries from which to mine natural stone. Where are these quarries located and which types of stone come from them?
A. Our quarries are located in Turkey. We have two quarries for obtaining marble, one quarry for cyanide, and several quarries for travertines. We get the highest quality stones from these quarries.
The market is growing fast, and the demand for natural stone is huge. Our company has established a solid position in the market and we are one of the largest importers of natural stones. And we meet at least 50% of the travertine demand.
Q. Can you briefly describe the complete cycle - from quarrying to delivery to the customer?
A. First the stone is extracted from the quarry and is given the shape of a block in the first factory. The stone is cut to size in the second factory, processed and given its final shape, and then is imported to Georgia and placed in our warehouses. Then we deliver the products to the customers, and here I would like to mention that in case of any shortcomings, we are customer-oriented and in basic cases we try to satisfy all their requirements.
Q. How popular is it in Georgia to use natural stones in the façade of a building?
A. Recently, the demand for natural stone has increased. Customers use it for the façades of buildings as well as for interior design.
Covering a building with natural stone is thus very trendy and attractive.
The most in-demand stone for façades today is travertine, while for interiors, mostly marble and granite are popular.
Q. Could you please name the most distinguished projects of Allstone?
A. One of our most distinguished projects was City Court, which is covered completely with our travertine.
Also, Allstone worked on Hotel Mercure, Hotel Ibis, and other large projects.
Allstone also cooperates with private entities and among its projects are private houses, swimming pools and interiors.
Q. Congratulations on winning the Golden Brand award. This was the third Golden Brand for Allstone. What led Allstone to this success in your opinion?
A. We are happy to see that our company is the leader in its segment again this year. We want to thank all of the experts who nominated us as the leading company.
Allstone is distinguished by its high quality, comfortable service, fast and reliable delivery of products, and large warehouse.
Our success is due to our loyal customers. We would like to thank each of Allstone’s customers and partners for their continued loyalty.
Austrian meat product brand Schirnhofer will expand in Georgia by opening three new stores in the capital city of Tbilisi. Besides offering the famous sausages for which it is known, an Austrian cheese and meat delicatessen can also be found in the new stores, as well as an assortment of freshly baked bread made from Austrian flour in the Austrian style.
One store will be opened on 72 Abashidze Street in the near future, while the two other stores will open later this year.
“All three new stores, like other branches of our supermarkets, will offer customers Austrian meat delicacies, cheese, and cookies made with Austrian technology. Also delicious sandwiches, pizza, hot dogs and everything that is needed for any family will be available at our store,” said Lasha Babuadze, Founder of Everest 2010, a distribution company that imports Schirnhofer to Georgia.
With almost a century-old tradition of producing over 600 varieties of meat products, Schir-nhofer is one of the largest Austrian meat product manufacturers, producing 12,000 tons of meat and sausage products per year, using only Austrian meat for production.
The company’s head office is located in Kaindorf, Austria, which is considered as one of the safest ecologically. Schirnhofer has 630 partner farmers. Its strict quality control begins at each of these farms. Quality control is paramount at every stage of production, and Schirnhofer uses ultra-modern technologies and laboratories. Schirnhofer holds an IFC (International Food Standard) certificate, which ensures constant product quality control.
Schirnhofer was founded in 1926 by Joseph Schirnhofer. The family business was carried on by his son Karl, who began producing sausages in 1950 with his mother. Soon the company became one of the largest Austrian meat product manufacturers.
Karl Shirnhofer himself was a founder of the Schirnhofer Company in Georgia, which entered the Georgian market in 2007 and quickly gained popularity among customers for its affordability, variety, and top quality products.
This year Schirnhofer has won the Golden Brand award in the category of “favorite meat products”.
“Schirnhofer's products have long been loved by Georgian consumers. Due to traditional Austrian quality, a variety of choices and the best taste qualities, Schirnhofer products have firmly established themselves on the Georgian market. For years, Schirnhofer's products have occupied first place among sausages and meat products imported to Georgia,” Babuadze said.
Q. How many products are sold at Schirnhofer stores in Georgia?
A. There are more than fifty varieties of meat delicacies and more than ten varieties of Austrian cheese available at Schirnhofer stores.
We also bake about twenty types of bread with Austrian raw materials and recipes.
The Schirnhofer cafeteria, which is open at every Schirnhofer store in Tbilisi, is very popular. At our branches you can taste hot dogs, pizza, fried potatoes, onion and squid rings.
Schirnhofer branches will prepare delicious sandwiches to suit your taste.
Q. As far as meat products, what is the favorite of Georgian consumers?
A. Due to its quality and taste (although the products are not cheap for objective reasons) Schirnhofer meat products are very popular and in demand among Georgian consumers.
I would single out baked goods with Austrian raw materials and recipes. The demand for this type of product is increasing year by year.
Q. Have sales increased over the years in Georgia?
A. Like all other businesses, the last two years have been very difficult for us too. A pandemic, global logistics problems, increase in transport and product prices, inflation problems - all these factors affected our business as well.
Unfortunately, this was compounded by the completely unjustified and unacceptable Russian invasion and occupation of independent Ukraine.
Despite these challenges, our team tries its best to keep the range and prices affordable to customers.
Q. How would you characterize the Georgian market and its competitive environment?
A. The Georgian market for sausages and meat products is saturated and thus highly competitive.
However, we are not afraid of healthy competition. Our main trump card is the high European quality of these traditional products and the high standard of service in the stores.
Q. Schirnhofer has won its first Golden Brand award. How did the brand achieve this success?
A. It is a pleasure to receive any award. Especially when you put so much effort and energy into the work.
The success is due to the traditional Austrian quality of Schirnhofer meat and bakery products and the European standards of service, which our team has been trying to maintain for years.
2021 was a year of recovery from the consequences of the pandemic for Mondelez, and the company aimed to increase its marketing and carry on bringing innovations to consumers.
Milka, one of nine global chocolate brands in the Mondelez International family, strengthened its positions in the new segment of pralines and won its third Golden Brand award in a row. But the market situation offers no time to relax, according to company experts.
“We must constantly and attentively monitor the situation and be ready for rapid changes. We have already experienced the reorganizing of business processes and taking advantage of new working conditions due to the pandemic, so we stepped into the year 2022 with more self-confidence. Now we will focus on keeping rates of growth high and strengthening our positions in new segments,” Sofia Tkebuchava, CP&A manager Confectionery, Caucasus & Central Asia, said.
Q. Please tell us about the future plans of Milka for the Georgian market? Do you plan to introduce new products to Georgia and which would those be?
A. Georgian consumers are some of the most snack-friendly consumers. We see that they are eager to try new products and flavors, especially those in accordance with a healthy, but tasty lifestyle. That’s why we are encouraged to introduce more innovations and broaden our product range.
We are researching updating consumers' needs and habits, and one of the vectors is to create products suitable to a proper diet, with reduced amounts of sugar and formats convenient for controlling calories intake. But precise flavors and designs are still a secret!
Q. Milka first appeared on the Georgian market in 2016. What was the first product Milka introduced to Georgia and over the years how diverse has the line of Milka products become?
A. In 2016 Milka entered the Georgian market with a rather small assortment, starting with no more than five products. Since that time we have been actively offering various product forms and flavors to the customers, so step by step our product portfolio has been enriched and now includes twenty products.
Q. Milka offers gift boxes. In your experience, how popular are these?
A. In the beginning of 2020 we introduced gift products — “Say It With Milka” boxed chocolates. Since then, we have been winning the hearts of customers in this area with attractive new flavors and flavor mixes and maintaining the quality of our chocolate. In 2021 we launched the third flavor in the line, so we can conclude that customers appreciate Milka gift boxes and want to see new products of that type.
Q. How important is the Georgian market to Mondelez today? What prospects for growth do you see in the country?
A. We consider the Georgian market very promising for our business. Years of work here have shown that local consumers meet our innovations with enthusiasm. Milka products have become an essential part of their way of snacking. Now we put all our efforts into maintain perception of our products and achieving leadership on the market. We are highly motivated, we love our product, and that pushes us forward every day.
Q. In general, could you please summarize 2021 – what were the biggest challenges, biggest achievements?
A. We spent 2021 creating innovations and increasing our consumer base. Purchasing power was low, but steadily recovered after the COVID-19 pandemic, so it was important for us to meet the new needs and habits of our customers in order to maintain their interest. Our team showed great cohesion and desire to successfully overcome this period, so now we see the results of delicate, but persistent work with our consumers — growth has reached double-digits.
Q. How has the year 2022 begun for your company, and what are your expectations?
A. In 2022 the market is very fast and demanding. We must constantly and attentively monitor the situation and be ready for rapid changes. We already have the experience of reorganizing business processes and taking advantage of new working conditions due to the pandemic, so we stepped into the year 2022 with more self-confidence. Now we will focus on keeping rates of growth high and strengthening our positions in new areas.
Q. Georgian customers have named Milka their favorite brand again this year. What brought Milka this recognition in your opinion?
A. Due to long, careful study of the market we learned to sense consumer needs and give them exactly what they are looking for. Meanwhile, we strictly monitor product quality and meet obligatory requirements, such as creamy texture and balanced flavor, in order to preserve the features of our product. So the main key to Milka’s success is, in our opinion, a combination of high quality, diverse and balanced assortment, and strong brand communication.
Q. Overall, what impact will the Russia-Ukraine war have on the operations of Mondelez International?
A. This war will affect businesses, consumers and communities across the world in many ways. For us at Mondelez, our primary focus is supporting our colleagues in Ukraine and stepping up our humanitarian efforts while ensuring the continuity of our business in Eastern Europe. It’s too early to assess the impact on business as there are many factors that play into it. But we hope we will be able to maintain our position in Georgia and the Eurasian area overall.
Global chewing gum brand Dirol, owned by Mondelez International, continues systematic development of its business on the Georgian market, now one of the largest markets for the company with “encouraging growth rates”.
Last year Dirol faced lingering consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, but forged ahead and decided to focus on the youth market. The results exceeded expectations, Zurab Lomsadze says, Mondelez National Key Accounts Manager in the Caucasus and Central Asia.
“Purchasing power dropped and there were uncertainties about the future. We focused on retaining our base and the effectiveness of our current performance. As a result, we strengthened our position on the Georgian market. We can’t reveal clear results and figures, but we can point out that during the whole year, growth was in the double-digits,” Lomsadze said.
Q. Please tell us about the future plans of the Dirol brand for the Georgian market? Do you plan to introduce new products to Georgia and which would those be?
A. Georgia is now the largest gum market for our company in the entire Eurasian area. It shows steady growth and lively consumer engagement year by year, so we consider it a good place for new marketing activities and product innovations.
We have introduced new flavors regularly owing to good customer response, and 2022 is no exception.
In April we added two original flavors to the XXL lineup — Watermelon and Mint.
We enjoy tinkering with product types and forms, it helps us catch up with the latest trends and adjust to consumer demand.
Q. When did Dirol appear on the Georgian market and how has the brand developed since then?
A. Dirol gum first arrived on the Georgian market eleven years ago, in 2011. Since then the brand has developed several product lineups and launched a wide range of flavors, including some oddities, such as Dirol Charcoal.
In 2021 we entered a new market segment for youth. We continue to develop the direction.
Q. How have Georgian consumers embraced products introduced in the youth market segment?
A. The main challenge for products entering the youth segment is to gain trust and then stay up-to-date, and finally, taken for granted as a usual item in the shopping cart. To reach such a perception of new gum we needed to motivate as many young customers as we could to try the new product.
Generation Z is quite open and receptive tol promos, so we focused on creative marketing and advertising companies imbued with imaginative solutions and common sense.
Due to the creative work and experience of our team, Dirol Minions paved its way to customers’ preferences and became one of the most in-demand products. Now we are continuing to carry out our own research to for more precise information about sales volume.
Q. How important is the Georgian market to Mondelez’s business today? What growth prospects do you see in the country?
A. The Georgian market is one the most important to Mondelez. We have been developing our brand here for some time, but there is still room for experiments and new achievements. We see already that buying Dirol has become one of the stable everyday habits of Georgian consumers.
We see vibrant activity in response to our promo campaigns, so our next objective is to gain the leading position on the local gum market.
We believe in our product, and that belief helps us move forward while remembering consumer needs.
Q. In general, could you please summarize 2021 – what were the biggest challenges, biggest achievements?
A. In 2021 the market was still weak from the consequences of the pandemic. Purchasing power was low and there were many uncertainties about the future. We focused on retaining our base and the effectiveness of our current performance.
As a result, we strengthened our positions on the Georgian market. We can’t reveal clear results and figures, but we can point out that during the whole year business growth has become double-digit. It means that customers surely appreciate our brand, show lively interest in new Dirol products, and the market is about to fully recover.
Q. Also, how has the year 2022 started for your company, and what are your expectations?
A. The beginning of 2022 was rather inspiring for us, in that, after the results of the last year, we felt the spirit of creativity and motivation. But as the retail market becomes more and more dynamic, the situation can change quickly. Both customers and international companies must be agile and ready to react quickly to possible changes. So now we focus on keeping up by building powerful brand communication and introducing innovations to the market.
Q. Georgian customers have named the Dirol brand their favorite brand again this year. What brought Dirol this recognition, in your opinion?
A. We are glad to find Dirol in the status of most preferred brand among Georgian customers again. It is undoubtedly the result of the professional, day-to-day work of our team and of our innovations, a significant part of our brand strategy.
Sakcable, the leading manufacturer of cable products in Georgia, has received the Golden Brand award for its outstanding contribution to the development of the country’s cable industry.
The company was established in 1958 to advance Georgia’s ambitions of industrialization through the manufacture and distribution of copper and aluminum cable products.
The company manufactures 74 types of power cables with over 2000 specifications at an international-quality level and in compliance with European standards. The company is ISO 9001- certified and has been tested and approved by the Israeli Standards Institute.
Golden Brand turned to Davit Kapanadze, Executive Director of Sakcable, who talked about the company's history of production and its recent activities contributing to the cable industry in Georgia, which attracted the attention of the Golden Brand organizers.
Q. Please tell us what the contribution of Sakcable to the development of Georgia’s cable industry has been?
A. I am really proud of Sakcable’s contribution to the Georgian economy and the cable industry.
Many years of experience, trained staff, high-tech equipment, international recognition – this is Sakcable.
One of our achievements is that we are the first company in Georgia whose products undergo a detailed inspection in an accredited quality control laboratory. We are creating a competitive environment that helps the country move forward.
Sakcable is a combination of great traditions, experience, and a team of professionals.
The company was re-equipped in 2018. We always try to acquire new innovative equipment for our factory. Overall, our main task is to replace imported cables with high quality local products.
New technologies and high quality products allow us to go abroad and increase sales, and this is a very important challenge for us and the country. We attend many international exhibitions and move forward accordingly.
Our goal is to make a serious contribution to the development of the electricity network outside of Georgia.
It is a great honor that Sakcable has received the Golden Brand award and been praised for its efforts to develop the country’s cable industry. We are happy to be recognized for this.
This award is a stimulus and motivation for us to carry on as we have been, and to offer an even wider range and the best service to our customers and partners.
Q. What is the main advantage of Sakcable?
A. Quality, affordability, and innovation. Sakcable produces European-level cables in Georgia, which have high quality, with a service life of 70-100 years and are adapted to the challenges of the 21st century.
Q. For which industry are Sakcable products designed?
A. Sakcable cables are designed for the construction and professional installation and for electrification.
Overall, Sakcable produces more than 2,000 varieties of cables. I would single out several varieties: uninsulated, self-propelled, mounting, fireproof, power, control cables.
All large-scale projects in Georgia have been done with Sakcable products, which we are very proud of.
Q. A memorandum was signed by Sakcable and the Georgian Technical University, according to which students will do internships at Sakcable and learn how to produce cables and other electrical products. How did you come up with this idea and how popular is it among the students?
A. The priority of Sakcable is to employ as many students as possible to learn this job, as we lack professionals in this field in our country. The new generation has the potential to understand this field and make a great contribution to the advancement of Georgian business.
We already have students employed in the factory and laboratory where they master the profession and take part in internships. We are proud to play a role in educating and helping the new generation succeed.
Q. Is Sakcable considering exporting?
A. Conquering the international markets is this year’s major plan and challenge for Sakcable. The state program “Produce in Georgia” supports us and helps us enter international markets and develop there. Produce an international product is a big responsibility.
Q. How complicated is your business, producing cables in our country?
A. Cable is a very specific product; it is impossible to carry out any construction without it. Much depends on the cable, primarily the safety of people. Making and selling a faulty, substandard cable can even be fatal.
That's why the company has to get many certifications associated with various standards.
In addition, cable production requires knowledge, education, high-quality raw materials and high-tech equipment.