A global journey begins with the customer’s needs.

Interview with Wiktor Sawosz, founder and chairman of the board of Brand Distribution Group – an international distributor and importer of FMCG products.

The company you created is one of the strongest players in the FMCG market. How do you build such a solid and stable brand?

The reason for our business existence is the customer and has been since the company was founded 30 years ago. We care about understanding their needs better and better. Therefore, we have established effective processes, hired experts, and opened offices in Europe, Asia, and the USA. We operate in 100 markets. We achieved record financial and scale results – last year, we dispatched over 150 million FMCG products from our warehouses. But it doesn’t stop there. We invest in other trading destinations, expand our team, and open new business lines.

You started when there was no competition and practically no products.

The first few years were challenging, a real school of life. Necessary for anyone thinking about running a serious business. I packed and loaded goods onto trucks, and my wife handled the paperwork. We started with sweets. I will never forget the shelves in our warehouse that burst with a riot of colours, a nice change after years of ubiquitous drabness. We then expanded our range to include cleaning products. Then cosmetics. We understood that delivering interesting novelties to customers, products different from those they had used for many years, gives us great satisfaction. This feeling accompanies our work to this day.

You operate globally. How do you build an offer on such a scale?

Our specialists analyse consumer trends, and customer needs in different regions of the world. On this basis, they construct product offers for individual markets complemented by emerging categories. We often observe trends overlapping between areas. Therefore, we can offer attractive products that will become popular in the near future and help our customers build a competitive advantage. Let’s also remember that the offer is about sophisticated products at a reasonable price and a whole set of supporting services necessary in this business: product marketing, customs documentation, logistics, or after-sales service. Moreover, customers using the full benefit in one place can significantly reduce transaction costs, save time, and thus focus on other critical aspects of developing their business.

You often emphasise that Brand Distribution is a family company. How does this translate into business?

First of all, it should be noted that family businesses generate every fifth zloty of our GDP. This trend will continue to strengthen. A family business is focused on long-term action, i.e., multigenerational. Therefore, it cares much more about maintaining better quality, higher credibility, and building long-term relationships. This model also works in a crisis (as we could experience during the pandemic or the current political and economic situation in Eastern Europe); its advantage lies in its flexibility. It can adapt more quickly and efficiently to dynamic conditions. A family company also pays more attention to values. Commitment and trust are the most important ones on which we have built a strong team and developed our business.

The team is essential. You built most of it yourself, but you recently handed the company’s helm to new hands.

Handing over the company’s management was a natural stage of the Group’s development, although I must admit I prepared for it for a long time. I have known Armen Papazjan – the current CEO and vice-chairman of the board – for over 20 years. I respect and admire his business achievements in the FMCG industry. We share the same values. We have a similar perspective on the direction of business development. We employ over 200 employees who form several teams specialised in trading with modern networks, distributors, wholesalers, the traditional market, and supporting departments. This is our most valuable capital. I will share that this team core comprises women (over 70%), managers and specialists.

Brand Distribution is a Group.

Yes. This year we are celebrating the 30th anniversary of Brand Distribution’s activity, and it is a breakthrough year for us in many respects. Thanks to our experience and the focus above on customer needs, we develop new business initiatives to utilise the Group’s potential fully. We focus on expanding in foreign markets, diversifying sales channels, and strengthening the product offer with exclusively distributed brands. We reorganised the sales forces to better adapt the company to the dynamic situation in international markets. We have maintained the domestic team responsible for developing the offer and cooperating with retail chains. We have optimised the logistics process, expanding our space to another warehouse in central Poland. We are also developing our own sales channels. We have created a network of modern hard discount stores, Vollmart, in response to rising living costs and increasing consumer expectations regarding the quality and price of products. We are currently building a network in Poland and looking for optimal locations. We are present in e-commerce. In this way, we want to be even closer to consumers and their needs.

What is your recipe for success?

A sense of higher purpose. It acts as a guidepost for everything we do and strive for. We have a customer-focused team, and I am proud to enter the next stage of development with them after 30 years of the company’s existence. We have travelled many inspiring routes, which always started with the desire to meet market expectations. Today we offer tens of thousands of products worldwide and are constantly looking for new ones. Each of our global journeys always starts with the customer’s need.

 

Czytaj także
11 апр 2024
Interview with the Head of the Domestic Sales Department Piotr Kłosowski
Our company is not just a thriving export department but also a dynamic player in the domestic market. We are…
05 апр 2024
Intensive fairs period
What places have we visited? In just five weeks, our team had the opportunity to participate in a series of…
26 мар 2024
Star Sirius Customs Agency has obtained AEO certification
Our Customs Agency, STAR SIRIUS LTD, has been awarded the prestigious Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) status. This is recognition of…
Наши офисы
ПОЛЬША
Brand Distribution Group
Al. Niepodległości 18
02-653 Варшава
8:00 - 18:00 (GMT+2)
ПОЛЬША
Brand Distribution Group
ul. Bitwy Białostockiej 5
15-102 Белосток
8:00 - 18:00 (GMT+2)
ГЕРМАНИЯ
GTG Hansa GmbH
Storkower Str. 115A
10407 Берлин
8:00 - 18:00 (GMT+2)
ВЕЛИКОБРИТАНИЯ
Brand Distribution (UK) LTD
5 The Mall, Ealing
W5 2PJ Лондон
8:00 - 18:00 (GMT+1)
ИСПАНИЯ
Brand Distribution Espana S.L
Paseo de Gràcia 21, Principal
08007 Барселона
9:00 - 18:00 (GMT+2)
СИНГАПУР
Brand Distribution Asia Pacific Pte. Ltd
320 Serangoon Road #13-05 Centrium Square
218108 Сингапур
8:00 - 18:00 (GMT+8)