Already in the late 1800s, shops for professionals were needed, and Ahlsell was founded to meet this need. The company has always had a unique relationship with those who work with, for example, water & sewage, heating & sanitation, construction and real estate (and much more). The interest in helping professionals is just as strong today, and it is an idea that has traveled well – in addition to Sweden, Ahlsell has stores in Norway, Finland, Denmark, Estonia, Poland, and Russia.
The company motto, to make it easier to be a professional, is followed just as much today. In Sweden by CEO Claes Seldeby and others in the management. What may seem like a simple promise, however, carries its own challenges, not least around the range of products, and this
is where Ahlsell shows their own professionalism.
Ahlsell offers hundreds of thousands of products, and in a regular store, there can be thousands of items – available on the shelf or after consultation with knowledgeable employees. To make so many products available to customers via stores, e-commerce, direct deliveries, and so on requires highly qualified logistics and goods handling. The hub in Ahlsell Sweden is its logistics center in Hallsberg, where 1,100 of all 3,500 employees work. With its 80,000 m2, it is one of the Nordic region’s largest transport centers – equivalent to 160 trucks with 4,800 m3 of goods passing through there every day. For this massive flow of products to work, Ahlsell uses a tailored system for logistics management.
In addition to this, they collaborate with 3,500 manufacturers. Many of them produce goods that are sold as Ahlsell’s private labels. This provides an opportunity to influence the entire process from development to sales so that improvements can be added and the quality of the products ensured.
We want to highlight Ahlsell’s ability to handle extremely complex and extensive logistics work involving tens of thousands of products and a large number of stores as an outstanding example of what it takes to succeed as a Manufacturing Retail Hybrid.