Royal Ahrend strengthens its position in the international market with further integration of branches in Central and Eastern Europe
The office furniture group Royal Ahrend, active in Western Europe, Central and Eastern Europe, the Middle and Far East, takes the next step in its international growth strategy aimed at global representation with local manufacturing and sales activities in its main markets. From 1 January 2021, the nine branches of subsidiary TECHO will also operate under the name Ahrend in Central and Eastern Europe.
Since the 2005 takeover, TECHO has grown under the wing of its parent company, Ahrend, to become the undisputed market leader in Central and Eastern Europe, with branches in nine countries. The region has now become an important second home market for Ahrend, alongside its Benelux base. The name change means that Ahrend is now also commercially recognisable here through the TECHO branches in Prague (Czech Republic), Bucharest (Romania), Budapest (Hungary), Bratislava (Slovakia), Warsaw (Poland), Vienna (Austria), Zagreb (Croatia), Kiev (Ukraine), and Moscow (Russia). TECHO’s successful retail division in Prague will also carry the Ahrend name in future. This division furnishes stores and showrooms all over the world for international clients like Volkswagen, Skoda and Grandvision.
Royal Ahrend’s CEO Eugène Sterken comments: “Operating worldwide under the name of Ahrend increases our recognition and enables us to implement our complete service even more effectively on an international scale. We now have a presence with a single brand in more than 25 countries around the world; Ahrend is the only European player with its own production plants in both Europe and Asia, manufacturing the same products for these regional markets. This means we are able to guarantee our international clients the same quality and service everywhere without long lead times. In addition, the trust that the Ahrend name enjoys internationally enables us to strengthen our profile in Central and Eastern Europe among clients in need of work environments to suit the local diversity of their activities, as well as their global brand identity. We have been able to assist many multinationals in that regard in recent years, with the furnishing of what we call ‘vitalising work environments’.”
A new trend among multinationals: Hybrid Working Communities
Sterken believes that multinationals are investing more and more in attractive and recognisable work environments as the functional hub of their international business culture. The familiar (office) work environment is evolving at a rapid pace and has become an increasingly important part of the company identity in recent years. “Increasingly, it determines how attractive you are as an employer. In line with this, the work environment also plays a crucial part in the performance and well-being of employees. What is also significant is that since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, a new work reality has arisen. Remote working is here to stay, we will be travelling less for business in the long term and we have now seen the advantage of working in the cloud, which is why the many multinationals we work with are now focused on working out how to reorganise their organisations and workplaces.
Sterken sees the typical office rapidly making way for the Hybrid Working Community; a set of different work environments within which individual workers create their own ‘work journey’, i.e. follow their own path. “We are currently very busy developing this Hybrid Working Community concept, under the Ahrend name, internationally and tailored to each client’s specific needs.”
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