The Amazing Story of “UniversPromotion” in Albania

“The backbone of our vision is to continuously strive for innovations and new products in the market”

The leader company in advertising in Albania, “Univers Promotion”, turns 10 years in 2017 while Univers Reklama celebrated its 15th anniversary last January. On such important occasion, the Managing Partner of “UniversPromotion” in Albania, Klodian Haxhiu, speaks about his company in an exclusive interview with Tirana Times revealing its milestones and moreover the key to reach the highest success possible.
“Univers Promotions” serves a large number of clients in banking, telecommunications, FMCG, pharmaceutical industry and not only, by offering a range of more than 2500 products and services, most of which can be found in their yearly catalog.

– How many years is “Univers Promotion” in Albania?

2017 will be the 10th year that Univers Promotions is operating in the Albanian market. Following a need in the market that we had identified for high standards promotional gifts, we first started with the basic technology and products.
It was then and still being extended into a complex production line with the latest technology as well as with a much wider product portfolio.
However, as Univers Group, our first year was in 2001. It is an anniversary year because Univers Reklama also celebrated their 15th anniversary in January. The Group was created based on the idea to have a “one stop shop” for our customers where they can cover their needs for indoor and outdoor advertising materials at Univers Reklama and their needs for promotional gifts and later for digital printing at Univers Promotions.

– How did Univers Promotion stay inspired and fresh at 10 years in the advertising industry?

When we were launched, Univers Reklama was already the leader in the indoor/outdoor advertising industry, so we could not have as an objective other than getting the leading position also in the promotional sector. And we did within 3 years.
– It is this position we had the responsibility to develop the sector and be a benchmark for quality of products and service.
– We’re here on the 10th anniversary of Univers Promotions. I think a lot of people know that the story of this company is pretty amazing. Can you mention some of the major highlights of Univers Promotion?

Well… The backbone of our vision is to continuously strive for innovations and new product launching in the market.
We were the first company to introduce full range catalog in the market for personalized promotional gifts. As the market matured we then focused on creating a vertical range and achieved this in 2012 by introducing High End Brands such as Cacharel, Cerruti1881 and Ungaro.
Later in 2015 we managed to sign exclusive distribution contract with Hugo Boss so we are now able to offer personalized business gifts from a simple ballpoint pen to a super premium conference folder or USB.
– Without a doubt as the most important development since Univers Promotions was founded I would point out our new production line that we introduced in 2013 for small format digital printing. The market has now the opportunity to print exactly the quantity that someone needs. If you need 10 copies, you get 10 copies. Also the speed is tremendous. Once the design is ready it only takes 2 minutes to print the first copy and it goes with a speed of 4000 A4 per hour.
Not only this but printing quality and parameters are very advanced. It is is High Definition printing with resolution 3600x3600dpi. This production line is produced from MGI, a French-American company and in Europe it was launched only in 2012. It is and Eco Friendly line and it consumes only electricity, unlike offset or other printing methods where solvent, plastic inks and other hazardous substances are involved. I am proud to say that this was the first machine in the Balkan region of it’s kind.
Another major highlight for us was the introduction of work wear and safety products in 2015. EU certified products that enabled us to supply such products for high standard safety and quality demanding companies such as FusheKruja Cement Factory, Alumil, etc.

What would you say is the unique DNA that has made UniversPromotions grown up on its own?

There are a few factors together I would say. It starts with our ability to identify market needs and market trends and fulfill them efficiently.
We pay a lot of attention to our suppliers and partners. We consider them crucial for our business. The supply chain can determine directly the service level that one can offer, therefore we choose our suppliers carefully.
Our technology is always updated allowing us to provide quality and efficiency for our customers.
But what is most important of all it is our team. A team designed of young and energetic people, with the right pace and rhythm to perform in a very high intensity work environment that we daily face in the industry we operate.

What’s the coolest thing that you’re excited about in terms of implementing of all the new technologies that the company has followed in these 10 years?

It is inspiring how different technologies combine and work with each other. As I mentioned above, having a complex technology it is one of our main strengths.
At a first sight it seems like our 3 product categories do not have much to do with each other: digital printing, promotional gifts and work wear… But it is exactly the technology that we have implemented that brings them together and allows us to produce all three of them with maximum flexibility. For instance with screen printing we can personalize gifts, work wear and quite a few paper products, while digital printing can be used in paper products as well as personalizing promotional gifts.
When working with our investment plans, how the new technology will integrate with the existing ones is the centre of the analysis.

– What do you see as the biggest challenge in front of the business?

We live in days where digital world is evolving so fast. This is having a direct impact in our industry also. It has an impact in the simplest process such as presenting a catalog or a product, or the process of purchase but even questioning that product’s existence itself.It’s the complexity and the impact that digitalizing will have that I see as the biggest challenge of our business.

– What’s next on the horizon for Univers Promotion?

We are currently working on being closer to our customer by expanding our sales and customer care team. Having such a wide range of products, sometime it is overwhelming for our customers; therefore we are trying to offer a more personalized service.
In terms of technology and new products the plan is to develop POS materials and displays by introducing laser technology within 2017. Laser technology not only will help us to develop new products but can also bring added value to our current portfolio.

September 8, 2016

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Continue reading StrawberryFrog CEO Scott Goodson on Entrepreneurship and Nation Branding

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By Rudina Hoxha

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