“The most important decision for the future is to constantly employ talented people and continuously educate our employees,” says Dragana Škrbić, supply chain director at NELT Group, speaking to CorD
Established a quarter of a century ago, NELT today represents a role model in domain of distribution, logistics and trade marketing. NELT defined logistics as one of the strategic pillars, besides distribution, Nelt brands and start-ups.
“We’ve dealt for a long time with distribution logistics, warehousing and warehouse manipulation, freight forwarding, delivery and the organisation of international and domestic transport. Our logistics sector today employs 1,400 people in seven markets,” explains Škrbić. According to her, Nelt has organised operations through 17 distribution centres, where high-quality standards and innovative technologies are applied.
“Having opened and expanded the first private intermodal terminal in Belgrade, we also became a member of the European Food Network (EFN) and gained the status of an Authorised Business Entity in Serbia, leading to simplified customs clearance procedures and guaranteed safety and security in the supply chain. We have also established operations in Montenegro, acquiring an 80 per cent ownership stake in one of this market’s logistics leaders, Montenomaks Control and Logistics, and plan to continue developing at a similar pace in the future”, says Dragana Škrbić.
NELT opened and expanded the intermodal terminal, through which it ensured connections with European ports. Is intermodal transport as highly valued in Serbia as it is elsewhere in Europe?
– The opening of the railway logistics terminal ensures secure and economical connections with Adriatic and Greek ports, but also northern European ports. Cooperation has also been established with large shipping companies – COSCO, CMA CGM and MAERSK – which recognised Nelt’s Intermodal Terminal as the logistical hub of the Balkans, thanks to its excellent location and infrastructure. In July 2015, the Government of the Republic of Serbia adopted the Regulation on stimulus measures aimed at improving combined transport, which was defined as entering into force as of 1st January 2018. We believe the state will stay the established course on this topic, which is of great importance to the development of business flows.
In the logistics segment of Nelt’s business, this year we accomplished the cooperation with over 120 new clients and managed 24% higher revenues than planned
You mentioned membership in the European Food Network. What kind of significance and impact does this membership have on the company?
– Establishing cooperation with company DACHSER, which is one of the 15 leading global logistics providers, and the European Food Network, which it heads, is an important step in the development of Nelt’s logistical operations in the Balkans. This cooperation enables weekly deliveries of food products from all over Europe to Serbia, Macedonia, Montenegro and Bosnia-Herzegovina via NELT’s logistical and distribution channels.
We have become one of the 13 partners of the European Network the only transportation network that offers regular groupage shipments of food from Western Europe to Serbia, according to the regime from 0 to 4°C. This network covers 34 European countries and has available about 1.74 million square metres of storage space and about 10,500 refrigeration vehicles. This partnership is also motivated by the end goal of offering the market a viable alternative to existing solutions.
Alongside everything you’ve mentioned, what else is included in the company’s investment plans?
– By the middle of next year, we will invest 15 million euros in the development of new services on the markets where we operate, construct over 20,000m2 of warehouse and office space in Belgrade and Sarajevo, and expand our fleet of vehicles. After completing the implementation of ‘Pick by Voice’ technology in our warehouses in the Western Balkans, we will continue implementing new software solutions in inventory and transport planning.
We are also planning to develop service logistics in Macedonia and Bosnia- Herzegovina, where we have already started working on the ground.