Conway Сontainers rolls out Baltic business with a new Estonian office
Conway’s latest expansion step in the Baltic markets is a freshly established office in Tallinn, Estonia. This marks the third office of the container-supplying company in the region since it has two more, one in Lithuania (Vilnius) and one in Latvia (Riga). “Opening an office in Tallinn means for us that we can fully develop in our home region and become one of the main distributors of container equipment and spare parts in the Baltics”, comments Aleksandrs Gnedovs, founder of Conway Group.
The road to opening the Estonian office was not smooth for the company. Aleksandrs says that the opening was planned even before the Covid-19 pandemic with the goal of going live in 2021. However, the situation, which included restrictions and reconfigurations in the global business, did not allow the company to take the next step until now.
In any case, Conway dreams big and still sees this as an opportunity to strengthen its domestic presence and provide customers with a variety of products and equipment. After all, according to the company, the timing seems right.
With all three Baltic countries in its portfolio, Conway focuses solely on the domestic customer. “Each container is subject to mandatory customs clearance and necessary import procedures, which can only be performed with local representation. Our customers in the Baltics are construction companies, manufacturers, and end users of containers, for whom it is not just a transport unit”, highlights Aleksandrs Gnedovs.
The company’s main task is to keep monitoring container import flows. That is because it aims to expand its market offerings even more. “We are interested in expanding our product line, including regular stock refilling. Therefore, we welcome every supplier who wants to cooperate with us in our region”, says Alexandrs Gnedovs. An example, for instance, is refrigerated containers. Aleksandrs explains that Conway already actively sells, rents and maintains refrigerated containers in Lithuania and Latvia and hopes that, in a year from now, it will be able to do the same in Estonia.
RailBaltica boosts business
A good reason for Conway to focus on domestic development is the broader business boom caused by the RailBaltica project. “The construction of the RailBaltica also contributes to the favourable growth of the industry in the region”, underlines Aleksandrs Gnedovs.
He also says that, in general, business looks good currently: “We see positive trends, more and more shipping lines are willing to off-hire leased containers in the Baltics, more suppliers are coming in, and many of our partners are interested in common investments in container industry fields, like terminals, depots, or container trucking companies”.
Global market challenging
At the same time, however, Alexandrs Gnedovs identifies some issues in the global market of container equipment. “The industry is experiencing challenging times. The war in Ukraine, the recession in Germany, and the U.S. Federal Reserve rate increase reduce the overall purchasing power business, and hence the container turnover”, he explains.
“Because of this, prices are bouncing down, and demand is lower than before”, he continues. To deal with this issue, Conway is constantly analysing the markets, monitoring trends and prices, and trying to predict demand. However, this situation is another incentive for the company to focus on its domestic Baltic business. “In general, now we want to focus on the domestic market, develop and improve the industry’s quality in our region. I hope we succeed”, he concludes.