Authors: André van Kruijssen and Guus van Logtestijn, managing board Plantion
Thanks to a number of innovations, Plantion has taken significant first steps towards the future in 2021. With the introduction of an unprecedented range of services, Plantion intends to make life easier for its customers and suppliers across a wide range of areas, and is linking this to its ambitions of achieving 10 percent turnover and volume growth each year.
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Under the heading of ‘innovating’, we introduced a live stream with video footage from the bidding hall in 2021. This meant remote buyers could genuinely experience the auctioning process and make more targeted purchases. The impact of this has been further enhanced by the advent of a groundbreaking LED screen, on which not only clocks but also images of products to be auctioned and supplier company presentations are displayed in razor-sharp detail. This clearly shows that Plantion believes and invests in the physical-digital combination.
Such innovations haven’t been limited to the bidding hall, however. For example, new employees have come on board in a variety of departments. A follow-up version of the webshop (Plantion Digital Marketplace) was also launched. Similarly, Plantion introduced a completely new corporate website.
Plantion found a new partner in Garden Retail Service (GRS) as its preferred supplier. GRS is a purchasing organisation for over 150 garden centres in the Netherlands and Belgium. A collective labour agreement was also reached with the AVV trade union.
As part of ‘connecting’, Plantion organised regional meetings for its suppliers for the first time. The purpose of these meetings is to increase the involvement of members, guest members and other Plantion suppliers. However, as a result of COVID, a number of meetings scheduled for the last few months of the year were unable to go ahead. We will, however, “make up” for these in 2022.
In 2021, we have worked together with the Trade Commission and the Plantion Wholesale Centre in a proper and pleasant way.
To build a bridge to the next generation, Plantion has also taken the initiative by creating a Council for the Future. This Council consists of about twenty young employees, suppliers and customers, and is tasked with advising Plantion on the policies of the future.
Om klanten te ‘inspireren’ voor speciale verkoopdagen ontwikkelde Plantion promotiepakketten met thematische bloemenkaartjes en mooie content voor social media. Plantion organiseerde samen met VBW een aantal livestream-workshops en was gastheer van de VBW Flowercup en het NK bloemschikken voor junioren. Ook waren er door het jaar heen inspirerende productpresentaties, met als hoogtepunt een ‘Meet & Greet’ met twaalf Nederlandse rozentelers. De ‘koopavond XL’ in samenwerking met Groothandelscentrum Plantion vormde in november een passend en inspirerend slot van het jaar.
Revenue forecast 2022
Plantion expects turnover to grow by 10 percent in 2022, with this forecast taking into account uncertainty in relation to product supply. We expect a significant increase in the use of Plantion’s Remote Buying, Auction Presales and webshop (Plantion Digital Marketplace) digital services, in combination with the Plantion delivery service.
Growth ambition will be reinforced in 2022 with the addition of an acquisition plan, which is aimed at increasing spending by existing customers and attracting new parties. In 2022, we will be investing in logistics services that offer more added value, such as transport, repackaging and labelling. Various ICT systems are currently being updated, and we are expanding the use of modern means of communication. Plantion is also looking into the possibilities of mechanising distribution with, for example, a sorting system. Customers are being inspired and supported in their local marketing, for instance through the Taste the Green platform and with promotional packages around special days.
We wish you and yours a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!