“This fair is the gateway to Eastern Europe”

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“The flower market in Eastern Europe is growing and they are looking for the concept that we have,” says Ed de Groot, owner of online sourcing platform 247flowers.online. He expects that Kazakhstan’s increasing flower consumption will provide growth opportunities for his platform. Since its founding in 2021, he has participated in various fairs, including the Flora Expo Astana fair that will take place from April 10 to 12 in Astana, Kazakhstan. “The flowers are on their way to Kazakhstan as we speak,” says Ed.

Ed de Groot at the Flora Expo Astana in Kazachstan in 2023

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What is the concept of 247flowers.online? “We supply directly to importing wholesalers. As a result, our prices do not include commission or overhead costs. We deliver from Naaldwijk, Aalsmeer and Rijsburg, the Netherlands. Everything that arrives in one of these hubs will leave the same day, we have no stock. The logistics and the processing of the flowers are outsourced to experienced organizations. Moreover, our platform allows wholesalers to choose how their flowers and plants are packed. Our deliveries are direct, transparent, and fast, which ensures lower costs and a fresher product,” Ed explains. He also says that his company is growing and is looking for new markets: “We started in 2021, currently we have more than 2,000 growers and more than 40,000 products. Last year’s turnover has doubled and I expect that this year’s turnover will triple compared to that of 2023. We have the ambition to grow further. We are especially interested in growth opportunities in Eastern Europe and Central Asia because these markets are growing while also being easily accessible for road freight and air freight.”

Holland Pavilion in 2023

The Flora Expo Astana Fair in Kazakhstan:
According to Ed, Kazakhstan’s flower market offers many opportunities: “This market has a lot of potential thanks to the country’s economic growth. Kazakhstan is about 5 times larger than the Netherlands and has a population of 19.6 million. Most flowers are consumed in the country’s 4 main cities. In Kazakhstan, like many other Eastern European countries, flowers are in high demand on public holidays such as International Women’s Day, name days, and the first and last school days of the year.”

For this reason, he is participating in the Flora Expo Astana fair in Kazakhstan for the second time, he explains why: “The Flora Expo Astana fair in Kazakhstan is the gateway to Eastern Europe. This fair is quite large and is getting bigger. This is partly due to the rise of smaller wholesalers, but we also see an increase in the number of visitors that come from other countries. For example, last year there were quite a few people from Ukraine, Uzbekistan, and Russia.

Like many other countries, Kazakhstan is increasingly engaged in flower cultivation, especially the cultivation of bulbous plants and peonies. Flowers that can’t be grown in Kazakhstan will be imported from the Netherlands. I am glad that we can participate in this fair as part of the Holland pavilion because we offer flowers that are not yet grown in Kazakhstan. This fair does not only attract companies from Kazakhstan but also companies from other countries. This year, around 130 exhibitors are expected from 10 different countries.” By participating in this and other fairs (such as IPM Essen and IFTF), Ed hopes to generate more attention for 247flowers.online. “I would love to see that 247flowers. online become a household name just like my former export company was.”

Flora Expo Astana 2023 in Astana, Kazachstan

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