"Oboya is back and stronger than ever," says Robert Wu, Founder and Chairman of this China-based manufacturing company in packaging, pots, trolleys, and displays. "Two years ago, when the company went through a turbulent time, I would never have imagined that 2022 would become one of the best years in the company's history." And he has high hopes for the future too, becoming an even larger one-stop shop for the horticultural market worldwide. In this article, Wu explains which factors contributed to the company's success, what the challenges were, and what plans are in the pipeline for the coming years.
It has been a wonderful year for Oboya, and according to Wu, there are several factors that made them stronger. "First of all, we are no longer a public company. We are now again a private company, which enabled us to focus a lot more on the business itself, the customers, and product development. In the past, we were always chasing growth and always in a hurry, looking to expand. Over the last few years, we have been more focused on product development and customer services, and it is now paying off. Secondly, we also improved internal processes and the investments that we made in the last years in clean energy gave us an advantage in the market. And last but not least, during the pandemic, we were still able to travel, as opposed to our Chinese competitors, creating certain advantages in the market."
However, the year has not been without any challenges. The energy crisis has been a challenge for many companies, also for Oboya, Wu explains. On top of that, some mergers of large competitors created some uncertainties for us. "But on the other hand, it motivated us and offered us opportunities to explore other markets. We, for example, expanded our markets in South America and Africa."
One-stop shop experience
The concept of Oboya as a manufacturer has always been to supply a one-stop shopping experience to their customers. "This is what made and still makes us unique. We produce pots, trays, trolleys, sleeves, and so on. As far as I know, we are the only manufacturer with such a large assortment. For us, this is a competitive advantage, and for the customer, it saves costs."
In the coming years, Oboya will focus on three areas. Wu: "We will focus on realistic plans, which are, firstly, to continue to invest in our clean energy projects. For example, we want to become a fossil-free producer. We installed solar panels, and currently, the plant generates about a third of our energy needs. The target is to cover 90%." Wu also wants to continue to establish themselves in the key local markets and are currently looking for sales representatives in Brazil, Ecuador, and Mexico. "Our production is in China, but our customers are in touch with local people. Also, this makes us different from our Chinese competitors." And they will continue expanding their assortment. "We will continue adding products to our assortment to provide the ultimate one-stop shop experience for our worldwide clients in the horticultural market."
Eager to meet the team of Oboya and see their products? At the IPM Essen, which will take place from January 24-27 in Essen, Germany, one can meet them at Stand 3B58 in Hall 3.