Fifth Vianor Tyre Retail Franchise to be Opened in Kazakhstan
Finland-based tyre manufacturer, Nokian Tyres, is planning to open a new Vianor retail outlet in the city of Almaty, Kazakhstan. The heads of Nokian Tyres Kazakhstan LLP are expected to take part in the shop’s opening ceremony which is scheduled for 15 April. The new retail business will be owned by a local partner and run as a Vianor-branded retail franchise. According to a Nokian, the opening of the latest store brings the total number of Vianor stores in Kazakhstan to five – situated in the cities of Aktobe, Almaty, Astana, Karaganda and Kostanay.
Speaking on behalf of Nokian Tyres, e-Communications manager Anssi Mäki explained the thinking behind the retail expansion: “The goal is to have [a total of] 15 partner outlets in the big cities by the end of 2008 and continue growing also after that.”
The forthcoming Almaty opening demonstrates the expansion programme Vianor is currently enacting, especially in Russia, Kazakhstan and the Ukraine. Vianor now operates outlets in Finland, Sweden, Norway, Estonia, Latvia, Russia, the Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Switzerland and the USA. Mäki explained that Nokian Tyres Group/Vianor is expanding in the Kazakhstan market for the same reason it has increased business in Russia and Ukraine: “To boost Nokian sales, to have a positive effect on Nokian pricing and to build Nokian and Vianor brands in the local market.”
News of the Almaty Vianor opening comes just days after the company announced that funding for its 4 million tyre, 160 million euro, local tyre production joint venture with Ordabasy JSC was approved by the Development Bank of Kazakhstan on 28 March. According to a Nokian spokesman, the Ordabasy tyre factory co-operation is not linked with Vianor in any other way than the fact that the Ordabasy Corporation owns one of the Vianor franchise outlets.
Local news sources report that Industry and Trade Ministry of Kazakhstand, Kazyna Sustainable Development Fund and the Astana Akimat are all “participating in the realization of the project.”