ASSA ABLOY Group companies have played an integral part in readying the resort town of Sochi, Russia for the 2014 Olympic Winter Games, providing door and locking solutions for the international airport, sporting facilities and hotels.
The biggest project for Abloy, an ASSA ABLOY Group company with a large presence in Russia, has been providing door automatics, door closers, mechanical and electric locks with ABLOY PROTEC cylinders locks – almost its entire product range – for the international airport being built for the Olympics. The company has also provided door and locking solutions for hotels and sporting facilities, like the skating arenas.
“The Olympics in Sochi have been the biggest investment program in Russia for the last few years,” says Matti Heikkila, managing director for Abloy Russia. “It’s important that we get a substantial number of projects that show Abloy as a solid brand in Russia, and let international visitors get a feel for the quality of Abloy products.”
VingCard Elsafe, another ASSA ABLOY Group company, has also been contributing to the construction in Sochi. The company has installed electronic card locks in about 60 percent of new hotel rooms built in the city – 12,000 rooms – and safes in about 6,000 rooms.
Both companies have been hard at work since Sochi was awarded the Olympics back in 2007. Playing such a large role in the games is a central part of ASSA ABLOY Group’s strategy to focus more on emerging markets like Russia. The company is already positioning itself for the 2018 FIFA World Cup to be held in Russia.
“The Olympics has offered us a way to increase our sales, market share and create a bigger footprint for ourselves in Russia,” says Stefan Nedelcu, the area manager for East Europe for ASSA ABLOY Hospitality. “This is a very tough market and all of our competitors are present here, so we have to take advantage of all opportunities.”
The facilities that these companies are contributing to in Sochi will be used long after the Olympic flame is extinguished. The Formula One Russian Grand Prix will be held in Sochi in June 2014, and there is a plan to later turn many of the hotels into apartment buildings.
“This is a key project for Russia and a chance to show how it can manage these big events,” Heikkila says. “Almost everyone in Russia is awaiting these games and is so happy to be hosting. We are very proud to be a part of the Olympic construction.”