Vlassis Georgatos: Fighting back: Inspiration, investments, extroversion, innovation
GREGORY’S – TECHNOHULL
In the last three months, we’ve lived through the kind of ordeal that happens perhaps once in a lifetime. Humanity and – as a part of it – businesses are facing an open challenge. We have yet to see a satisfactory response to the health issues that emerged earlier this year.
The companies and entrepreneurs that will stand out are those that don’t remain inactive. Our first concern should be adapting to the new reality, as we are already faced with a new situation: Our primary task is to take care of our customers and employees. We need to offer them security, but also innovative solutions which respond to the unprecedented challenges in the best possible way.
Growth & well-being
The entrepreneurs who have a vision, ideas and energy will find the creative solutions to counter the great problem of economic recession.
The first reaction of some businesses to such crises is usually defensive. And yet, despite the magnitude of the economic slump and insecurity, opportunities are emerging from the market. Take, for example, the coffee shop industry, a sector that suffered one of the biggest blows both in Greece and worldwide because of the pandemic. Opportunities are opening up because, after the shock of these last few months, consumers are looking for better options for their coffee and food. They want guaranteed quality, select raw ingredients, high standards in hygiene, affordable prices and easy access.
These are precisely the values that Gregory’s is aiming to fulfill in the new, post-coronavirus era. Between mid-May, when the lockdown measures started to ease, and June 10, we opened five new stores. And by the end of August we will open another 11.
Innovation & extroversion
The country needs aggressive investment activity. This is one way to deal with the effects of the recession. The second is through innovation and technological excellence, which will enhance the competitiveness of Greek products. This will increase exports, which is an important goal for the Greek economy and will also help create high-value, well-paid jobs.
Such businesses will become a point of attraction for Greek scientists abroad, to help us move from brain drain to brain gain. Companies with high innovation in their production activity will give Greece the opportunity to claim a more competitive position, now that the map of world trade is being readjusted. This is the experience of the Greek company Technohull, which exports 70 percent of the leisure boats it builds. Its innovation in the global market will continue thanks to the new investment that is currently being carried out in Lavrio, southeastern Attica. There, Technohull’s new shipyard will serve as the first such integrated, state-of-the-art, vertical production unit in Greece.
Inspiration & good practices
In the current climate, we will see many companies suffering from the recession, with entire sectors receding.
It will be valuable for the country and all employees to see the good practices of those companies that are not caught in the wave of introversion, but rather chart new courses, undertake new activities with innovation at the forefront, and shape the conditions that will support consumers and employees.
The way forward is best described by four words that will help us fight back: Inspiration, investments, extroversion and innovation.
THE COMPANY AT A GLANCE
GREGORY’S: The company was founded 48 years ago and today operates more than 350 stores in Greece, Germany, Romania and Cyprus. It tops the list of Famous Brands in the Greek market for small food businesses and is among the 10 biggest coffee companies in Europe.
TECHNOHULL: With its innovation and uniqueness, the company is set to celebrate 15 years of excellence in creating luxury leisure boats of unique quality, design and performance. Technohull is a very extroverted company, with more than 600 boats sailing worldwide.