Sanoma Trade has decided to consolidate its Estonian businesses in order to ensure the ability to compete successfully by creating more value to the consumer also in the future. The Estonian market is relatively small in size with its population of around 1.35 million inhabitants. This means that the clientele needed for all of Sanoma Trade's brands is sufficient in only few of the country's biggest cities.
Sanoma Trade is present in Estonia with kiosk operations, press distribution, bookstores and movie operations which are organised in altogether five different companies. There are almost 240 stores in 30 different localities and the number of the division's customer encounters comes up to some 24 million annually.
The consolidation of the Sanoma Trade brands (R-kiosk, Lehepunkt, Videoplanet, Forum Cinemas, Filmipood and Apollo) under one and the same management will facilitate faster concept development, improve the customer offering and create possibilities to operate in a larger number of Estonian localities of different sizes. Moreover, the organisational renewal and uniting of forces will diminish bureaucracy as well as create uniform and efficient processes, which will all contribute to the organisation's ability to concentrate on business and serving customers. As one company in Estonia, Sanoma Trade is a bigger player as an employer and has more say in negotiating lease contracts for the business locations.
Ivar Vendelin has been appointed to lead the change in Estonia. Vendelin has worked in Sanoma Trade since 2004 and is presently managing director of Forum Cinemas Home Entertainment in the Baltic countries and Forum Cinemas Ltd in Estonia and in the Ukraine.