Georgia’s leading company in the outdoor advertising market, Alma, will build 15 pedestrian bridges in the next three years in the Georgian capital city of Tbilisi, which will be adapted for people with special needs.
Alma Chief Executive Officer Giorgi Trapaidze said that the company won the auction announced by the Tbilisi City Hall last year and received the right to build pedestrian bridges in Tbilisi.
“Alma will build these 15 bridges at its own expense. The bridges will feature elevators and will meet all modern standards. The pedestrian bridges will also feature different advertising campaigns, which in turn will be added to Alma’s advertising portfolio”, Trapaidze said.
In addition, Alma is working on building new bus stops in the regions of Georgia.
Alma has been operating in Georgia’s outdoor advertising market since 1995. The company offers full services for OOH advertising: indoor and outdoor advertising technical services, printing and design.
Alma can provide a complete solution for any outdoor advertising campaign, starting with research on various outdoor advertising products in the area of the customer’s interest, including a detailed analysis of location, visibility, exposure levels and cost.
Alma has the exclusive right to advertise in the country’s three airports in Tbilisi, Batumi and Kutaisi.
The printing machines of Alma’s print house allow for high-quality printing on banners, mesh banners, polyposters, tape, photo paper, any flat, hard surface, paper, canvas, wallpaper, mesh stickers, stickers, floor stickers, and other surfaces or areas.
Thanks to the utmost success the company achieved in 2020, Alma has won the most influential business award of Georgia, the Golden Brand again this year.
In this interview with Golden Brand, Alma CEO Trapaidze summarized 2020 and shared some new plans for 2021.
Q. Last year you told us that Alma advertising banners would be placed in Tbilisi metro stations and bus stops. However, due to the coronavirus pandemic, public transport has been suspended for months in the city. How has this restriction changed your plans?
A. The coronavirus pandemic has dealt a severe blow to the outdoor advertising industry.
This is due to two main factors: Alma was technically restricted from selling advertising services, as both public transport and Georgian airports were stopped throughout the year, while Alma’s customers were in dire financial straits and were deprived of the opportunity to invest in outdoor advertising.
However, despite these difficulties, our plans have not changed significantly and the investment plans we had at the beginning of last year have been fully realized. Tbilisi municipal transport has completely changed its advertising infrastructure and placed new, modern advertising structures, including LED panels.
We are already looking at 2021 positively. The number of passengers using municipal transport has almost equaled the 2019 data and we expect that advertising revenues will soon return to the old benchmark.
Q. How has the outdoor advertising industry changed during the pandemic?
A. Last year the outdoor advertising industry changed significantly.
In 2019 we were largely tied to the tourism-dependent business sectors, such as casinos, hotels, restaurants and airlines, while in 2020 this trend changed significantly and the dependence on these industries has decreased. Our customers are more or less evenly distributed in different areas of retail, development and the financial sector.
However, we expect that this trend will change and in parallel with the easing of restrictions, the demand for our services in tourism-related business sectors will continue to increase.
As for our activities in modernizing the advertising infrastructure in municipal transport, our investment projects in 2020 in this direction were completed.
We also did not see a significant increase in the number of billboards in 2020 due to the reduced demand caused by the pandemic.
Q. Currently how many billboards installed by Alma are located in Tbilisi and other cities of Georgia?
A. Throughout Georgia, we operate more than 5,000 advertising constructions through various advertising channels in our portfolio, in particular through billboards, screens, bus stops, buses, metro stations and airports.
Q. Congratulations on winning the Golden Brand award. In your opinion, why did experts name Alma their favorite company?
A. Thank you and all organizers of the Golden Brand awards.
I think this award responds to the path of sustainable development that our company stands on, despite the many difficulties and challenges. We believe that with the active work of our team members we will overcome all difficulties and come out of the crisis situation even stronger.