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Santa to Fire Reindeers and Switch to Teleportation?

2015 marked a breakthrough in teleportation technologies. Scientists broke a record by teleporting quantum information from one photon to another across over 60 miles of fiber-optic cable. Is this the beginning of an end for traditional transportation and logistics? Is there coming a time when you will move your goods using a Japanese teleport computer, rather than a carrier company? Will Santa fire his reindeers? Progress is unstoppable. For now, however, we urge you to choose the second best option to teleportation: the speed, professionalism and commitment of “Via Genero”.

Thank you for staying with us in 2015. Next year we will be even more aggressive in protecting your business interests. We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Let there be some mistake in Santa’s computer, so that all of his gifts are teleported directly under your Christmas Tree!

Via Genero team

Snippets from the Life of a Chauffeur

Many a myth surround the life of a truck driver. And people often ask for some spicy details. The drivers of “Via Genero” were asked to fill in an improvised questionnaire. What follows are some snippets from a mysterious life of a trucker. What kind of music is best for fighting off sleep? How does one deal with the longing of one’s loved ones? And how is the secret community of European drivers being established?

Chopin and Roasted Sunflowers

“Job on the wheels”, this is how our long distance truck-drivers describe their profession. They also make sure to bust the myth about the alleged monotony of the profession. Chopin, rock, metal, Bach, Liszt or the usual radio pop song provide the background for unusual tasks which require patience, determination, creativity. Especially if you’re on duty in Russia, the land where amazing happens every day. One of our drivers recalls a story where the local militiamen asked him for a bribe in exchange for silence over the warehouse robbery (which our bemused driver was accused of carrying out).

Find an address which doesn’t exist. Withstand the yearning for home and family. Resist the temptations of the road life. Defeat the mist so thick it covers the speedometer. And engage in an ever lasting wrestle with drowsiness. That’s the regular day of our chauffeurs.

Mindaugas, one of our drivers, has a system of dealing with home-sickness: 4 calls per week and SMS messages everyday. A collective opinion on fighting sleep has it that excessive intakes of coffee and energy drinks will not take you far in this craft. Sleep is best fought, well… by sleeping. Vaidotas, another driver of ours, has a word of praise for the ritual of shelling roasted sunflower seeds. The habits keeps one awake and alert, says Vaidotas. We hope it is a safe habit.  

The Europe of Chauffeurs

“Via Genero” drivers agree that driving a truck is way more exciting than driving a car. Of course, the pleasure is somewhat restricted due to the speed limiting devices installed in the vehicle. The pleasure of speed and power is matched by that of encountering colleagues from all over the continent. Language barriers are no barriers when it comes to professional jokes and rest-stop discussions about roads, vehicles, freights, employers and traffic jams.

The “European Union of Chauffeurs” is also helpful in dealing with technical problems. According to driver Andrius, truck-drivers from all over Europe are willing to assist one another in an hour of need. The word “Chauffeur” (extremely popular in Lithuanian slang) itself is a the result of European unity. It arrives from the French term for stoker because the earliest automobiles, like their railroad and sea vessel counterparts, were steam-powered and required the driver to stoke the engine.

Professional solidarity is a great thing to lean on the road, but the truth is that most of the time the driver is alone. How does one deal with melancholy and the metaphysics of loneliness? The men of “Via Genero” choose books, reminiscences of their loved ones, and, of course, utter professional dedication. So that your products would always get places fast, safe and fresh. So that our hardships would translate into your calm. So put your pyjamas on, for we are good at dealing with stress.

Why a Professional is more Important than a New Truck

Two decades ago there were  88 logistics companies in Lithuania who had a license to carry passengers and goods. Today there are over 27 000 trucks in Lithuania traveling across Europe. Lithuania has become a small logistics powerhouse. The market, however, has developed to a stage when development in width must be counterbalanced with an even more active development in depth. Instead of chewing as big a share of the market as you can chew, you have to think in terms of chewing thoroughly everything that fits in your mouth. This is the current challenge of a far-sighted carrier. And this requires investments in employees with different logistics expertise, professionals who are capable of managing the ever increasing complexity of the logistics chain. 

Specialization and Specialists

The part of the GDP created by Lithuanian transport and logistics sector is well above the EU average. On the other hand, it is estimated that, due to phantasmagorical Russian import policies, our carriers have already lost an income of over 40 million Euros. What does this mean? It means that the demand for logistics services remains enormous, yet erratic. And that changes in the market require adjustments, alternative directions and constant investments in new competencies.

Development "in width", when a company transports everything and everyhow to as many countries as possible, is no longer smart for Lithuanian carriers who are aiming to become important players in the European marketplace. Instead of focusing on new trucks, semitrailers or thermo-regulated minibuses, we should think more about a person – a logistics professional who is becoming the decisive factor in the competitiveness equation.

Development "in depth" is specialization, a decision to do something perfectly instead of doing everything so-so. European clients can choose from thousands of companies that offer transportation services. Therefore, orders are won by those who are best at fulfilling unique requirements.

That is why "Via Genero”, a logistics company operating for almost two decades, has been focusing on the transportation of temperature-controlled and part loads since 2007. In order to maintain and strengthen our national and international positions in this niche, we are always hungry for new professionals with niche competences.

Let them Dream

Experienced hands behind the wheel of a truck are pure gold. However, ambitious specialists of modern logistics technologies who are able to control specific components of the logistics chain (and the "cold chain") are even more valuable. A comfortable, motivating and progressive environment for such new specialists – this is the vow of "Via Genero”. This is the long-term vision. Focusing on clients and orders of any kind is suicidal in the long run.

Of course, one needs to understand that an employee always has his own personal goals which may eventually clash with the company's goals. And this is perfectly natural. The employee has the right to dream. And the employer has an obligation not to ruin those dreams. The relationship between the employee and the employer unites as well as separates.


However, the capacity to create stable relations within the company (when "I" is replaced by “we”, to use a cliche), creates the core of the company which is essential when it comes to withstanding issues related to external changes. Only then can obligations to clients be fulfilled under any circumstances and in a way that corresponds to the highest European standards. Because only true professionalism shown by everybody together leads to mutual victories for both clients and carriers, regardless of whether the problems are caused by a serious competitor, a hurricane on the road or an angry transport inspection.


Neither Sanctions, nor War will Break the Country of Transit

(Letter from a Lithuanian carrier to a concerned businessman)

 "We, who became the nation of transit, have a hard time sitting around, as we also once were the nation of horsemen. Vehicle herding from one end of Europe to another is like herding a drove of horses; it is in our genes. There is no other such tiny nation whose state number plates are found on such a large number of heavy trucks all over the European autoban; we are very capable to move and we don't like to sit around.  We are the symbol of Vytis and Rūpintojėlis. Strength and contemplation, that is the power. This is the power of the samurai. This is such a power which tears clothes and armour apart. Lithuania is not enough for us. We feel at ease only when expanding influences. Vytis is calm only in his saddle, and the rider's place is on his horse.“

Lithuanian businessman, my friend in fate,

We live in a very special time. The economic blockade in Russia is destroying the illusions of peaceful business. Instead of finding the end of the crisis at the end of the tunnel, we find war in Ukraine and tensions between Brussels and Moscow. Lithuania is at the center of this conflict. As always, the price of the conflict lies on the shoulders of Lithuanian business – on your shoulders and mine. We are making adjustments, looking for alternative directions and losing big in terms of profits. However, this letter is not about complaining and assigning blame. It is about the fact that we will be able to "withstand" this blow. By becoming stronger.

There is no other country in Europe, which, throughout its thousand-year history, had to withstand as many threats as Lithuania. According to politologists, we are a geopolitical anomaly – a country which should not even exist. Because our land, which is a logistical crossroad connecting the North with the South and the West with the East, is geographically indefensible. And at the same time it was very valued, and always attracted the attention of great countries. But this is also why, despite the historical invasions of Lithuania every thirty years, we are now free. And we can do business in our independent country. It would not have been possible without our extraordinary people – the hardy Samogitians, the flexible Highlanders, the brave people of Dzūkija and the business-savvy people of Suvalkija – and their determination to resist and stop playing "victims". And never stand idly in one place, no matter what.

Lithuania is a logistics powerhouse

Logistics companies rarely draw strength for their business from the writings of philosophers and semioticians. However, certain things can be discovered in such writings which provide more inspiration than charts and tables of business management systems. On behalf of the whole "Via Genero" team, we are grateful to the late Gintaras Beresnevičius, who was cited at the beginning of this letter, and who so accurately expressed the way that we feel and the things we are proud of while representing our country on the Europen roads.

By transporting Lithuanian products – fruits, vegetables, dairy products and other food and non-food products from Lithuania – we are also exporting the Lithuanian flag. And it does not matter whether our routes pass through the Netherlands, Belgium, Great Britain, or the neighbouring countries, including Russia, we will continue the traditions of our ancestors: to trade, to do business and to connect the West and the North with the Easter European granaries and markets.  The Curonians of old, who traded with Vikings a thousand years ago and were famous for their "horses and gold”, did the same thing. This was also done by our warrior noblemen who travelled across the whole Grand Duchy of Lithuania which was once the largest empire in Europe. Today we all are doing the the same thing by trading goods with the European Union and the Eastern countries.    

Of course, political conflicts have always been, and continue to be, a terrible challenge for traders. And periods such as the current one provide a great opportunity to test our worth. Still, were our ancestors not able to adapt to much more frequent conflicts and disasters? So we will survive as well. Let's not panic about the halting businesses and failing peace in the East. Let's not fear Russia, but also not curse those who remind us that sometimes we need to stand for our values which once allowed Lithuania to revive. We should learn to pre-assess and weigh the risks of our business in order to balance the interest of a businessman with that of a citizen. We have to respond and adapt, so that we are stopped by neither sanctions, nor war.

The fact that the possibilities for Lithuanians are endless is accurately evident in the wish of Gintaras Beresnevičius:

"We have to enter Europe without complexes, humility or thoughts about our smallness. We are barbarians near the open gates of Rome and we are invited to seize power. [...] We are the North from which Europe has always received the strength for expansion. [...]  By ensuring a peaceful life for Europe, we allowed them to build ships from the trees, tar and resin of our forests. Never worried about grain, but only about gold, they traded their gold for our grain and fed Western Europe with bread born in our lands, thus allowing Europe to expand and colonize defenseless continents. We were the backup. [...]  Now the backup is the front line. Now we are defending Europe and its values. Opportunity exists. The West is ours – it belongs to our companies, our people, our brokers and our businessmen. It is given for free use, as once Rome with all its provinces was given to barbarians. Otherwise it would not have survived. And we in turn have to help the West.“

Friends of fate, let us not lose our hunger for development. Let us develop our business and "take on" new markets. Let us help Europe by helping ourselves. Let us be the unbreakable power of transit.



Where will 2015 take us?


The year of the horse, which was full of surprises, changes and instability, is now galloping to an end. While logistics companies are counting the profits and losses of 2014, 2015 is also going to be uncertain. Market changes. Geopolitical misunderstandings. Technological modernization. Longer distances. Postmodern environmental and service culture requirements. The goat of 2015 will show its horns. What we can do is anticipate the main tendencies for which logistics companies and clients should prepare.

The Future Belongs to LTL

Clients enjoy the opportunity to transport small quantities of products, when these are mixed with other clients’ products in the same vehicle. The popularity of such a method skyrocketed during the global crisis of 2008-2010, when importers sought to reduce product quantities in their warehouses and accelerate capital turnover. To them transportation of goods in small quantities was the smart solution. Is this scenario repeating itself?

The trend is alive and kicking. Logistics sector grew faster than the Lithuanian economy, and revenues have doubled in 2013. However, the upheaval of 2014 – Russia's self-imposed isolation, embargo and sanctions - has forced the clients to re-think their options. This has meant a new growth in demand for LTL.

The annual growth of 7-8 percent of the LTL sector in the European Union allows us to to predict a golden age for part loads. Therefore, one thing is clear – compared with full loads, the demand for part loads transportation will increase in 2015. It is a global tendency which also affects Lithuania. In order to survive, our companies must show promptness in adapting to this trend.

Russian Games and New Challenges

Russia is playing a game of protectionist and isolationist policies, which have compromised the natural growth of European logistics sector. A causal chain is triggered leading to increased competition between carriers which will further intensify in 2015. It is no secret that the Top 100 best global logistics companies are annually growing by 3.7% and occupy a major part of the market. There won’t be many changes at the top of the hierarchy next year. The real competition game is played between small and medium logistics market players.

To compete in price was a modern challenge. Today's postmodern challenges force us to think about what's behind the price. In other words, investments in service quality standards in all business areas is the new kew to success. Logistics is no longer limited to freight transportation from point A to point B. The client cares about things which were considered unimportant by many just several years ago: the opportunity to monitor the condition of freight during every transportation stage with the help of modern technologies; the service culture; the environment. The fundamental challenge for a logistics company is to eliminate these concerns and provide well-executed solutions to ensure the client‘s peace of mind. Without as little ‘logistics stress’ as possible.

Top-of-the-line equipment. Clearly expressed specialization. Increase of the number of routes and clients in the West. And most importantly – investments in personnel, its qualifications, as well as team-building. This is a fresh postmodern approach to logistics which is a proper approach for 2015. Because the Lithuanian logistics market is not indifferent. We must reject short-sighted mentality: instead of trying to maximize earnings here and now, we should make long-term investments in team development and equipment upgrades, for this will always be required by important international clients. In the course of 2015, this will also likely be required bright clients in our own country. And they will be absolutely right to demand all this.

The Dilemma of One Thousand and One Carriers: How to Choose?

Logistics is dynamic, it is a business that connects a large amount of external variables within itself: sanctions, flat tires, icy roads, cancelled orders...

It is a business to which you entrust the fate of your products. But at the same time it is a business which is not easy to trust – due to the countless circumstances beyond one's control and poor business culture still dominant in our region. How to make the right choice when delegating your trust to a logistics company? How to make the right choice when seemingly identical services are offered by one thousand and one carriers? We should begin by busting three myths.

Myth No.1: High quality logistics – logistics without surprises

Based on 17 years of experience in the market, we can safely say that there is not one logistics company which has not encountered unexpected situations or unforeseen challenges. It is possible to reduce the probability of extraordinary situations to a minimum, but it is impossible to completely eliminate risk. This is not a death sentence for you and your carriers, but rather a chance to see the true colors of your partners. In other words, the best indicator of professionalism is not the prevention of all possible problems (which is impossible), but the reaction to those problems: : will there be attempts to conceal problems and offer excuses, or on the contrary - will there be attempts to find solutions in the midst of chaos?

Everyone makes mistakes. Rules are broken when tires explode. When vehicles are under inspection. When orders are cancelled 5 minutes before departure. And time is running out to the disadvantage of the carrier. However, values and determination to follow the rules remain. So that we remain faithful to the fundamental principle of professional logistics – the vow to deliver the goods on time. Safely and quickly. At all costs. Because the success of a carrier from a small country depends on commitment and respect - respect for the client, respect for itself, respect for our country whose national symbol is embellished on trucks and loads delivered across the European roads.

Myth No.2: High quality logistics are impossible without foreign capital

No matter how much one would like to believe it, "foreign capital" does not by itself guarantee the quality of logistics services. And Lithuanian identity likewise is not an inborn sin of a logistics company. What is what becomes clear by looking further into every company's history, the path that it went through, strategy, existing capacity and, of course, values. "Via Genero" - a company of Lithuanian capital has expanded from 4 employees and 4 vehicles in 1997 to 35 team members, 35 trucks, 28 refrigerated semi-trailers and 7 tilt semitrailers today. This year alone, investments in the modernization of work equipment reached EUR 100 000 in order to ensure our service quality and the peace of mind of our clients.

Hence, quality is not determined by the origin of the capital or national symbolism. It is determined by the hunger and the uncompromising dedication to one's client so that he or she could sleep peacefully in his or her pyjamas. The responsibility to make sacrifices for the sake of the impossible. For the sake of control of all transportation links – from the client's first call to product unloading in the final unloading site. Without allowing the client to experience too much stress.

Our experience shows that the solution of Lithuanian logistics in the transportation and forwarding market can not only meet Western standards, but can surpass them as well. This is a business that grew together with independent Lithuania. When society adopted social and technical innovations, they were adopted by businesses as well. Gradually workplaces were modernized, investments in the qualifications of team members have increased, and, finally, there was an understanding on what business should be like to become an equal part of the international business community. Just look at a middle-aged driver, a child of socialism, gradually adopting European work values. This is how primary knowledge of quality management turned into the daily following of the ISO 9001, 14001 standards.

Myth No.3: High quality logistics is a trade for grumpy people

A good carrier is not someone whose experience and knowledge is evident in his sour face. A good carrier is not someone who blindly performs all the hard work assigned to him. Limited responsibility and automatically performed daily tasks will not teach you the lessons of flexibility and adjustment to the rapidly growing market requirements. There is a lot of work. Each team member receives more and more responsibilities. In general, it is impossible to estimate the potential challenges. And the only way to guarantee the peaceful night's sleep of the client is to ensure that each person working in the team has the enthusiasm and ardour to perform his duties with pleasure.

Continuous investment in team development. Workplace modernization. Teamwork based on friendship and support. All this is of paramount importance. It does not matter which part of the chain you belong in – whether you are a loader, a warehouse worker or a carrier. It does not matter what you are transporting – full, part or dangerous loads. The greatest challenge is to perform your work with pleasure. In a way which would allow the client to feel fresh and well rested in the morning. So that he could enjoy a cup of coffee in his pyjamas and contemplate with ease new development directions for his business, rather than stress out about apricots which are late.


How many truck drivers does it take to tell a joke?

Getting back to work from holidays is never easy. To avoid the "post-festive" depression and meet the challenges of the new year with a good mood and without too much stress, one may enjoy several anecdotes from the folklore of logistics.

From a yo-yo to a whoa

A truck carrying yo-yos flew over a cliff into the ocean and drowned. 63 times so far.

BBC News announce: A cargo ship loaded with Viagra has sunk in the Atlantic Ocean. An update of the announcement an hour later: Titanic has surfaced.

And a little bit of self-criticism

How many logisticians does it take to change a light bulb? None, the light bulbs are late…

What does a conversation between carriers sound like?

Mykolas and Jonas are driving in a truck and suddenly see a road sign: 11-foot-high bridge ahead. One of them says:

-Damn, our truck is 12 foot high...

The other one looks around, looks out the window, and glances at the mirrors:

-Let's do it, I don't see any police around.

Two drivers, Juozas and Jonas, are applying for a position. The boss gives Juozas an oral test:

-Imagine that it's two o'clock at night, you are driving through a narrow bridge and you are carrying nitro-glycerine in your truck. Suddenly, another truck appears out of nowhere and is speeding towards you. What do you do?

-I would, of course, immediately wake Jonas up – he has never seen an accident like this!

Linguistic freight

A truck carrying synonym dictionaries got into an accident yesterday and scattered its load all over. Witnesses were shocked, surprised, unable to believe their eyes, excited, speechless, astounded, overwhelmed and stunned.

And finally – a lesson why drivers should be respected:

A pastor and a truck driver are killed in a car accident and go to heaven. Both of them receive a warm welcome and are escorted to their living quarters. An angel points towards a villa decorated with gold – this will be the truck driver's new home. The angel then escorts the pastor to a small wooden hut.

Confused, the pastor asks:

-Why was the driver given a golden palace, while all I got was this wooden shack even though I was a faithful servant of God?

The angel explains:

-When you were preaching, people were sleeping, but when he was driving, everyone around was praying.

Start this year the way that you have read this text – relaxed and stress-free. No matter how challenging and complicated the logistics business can become, we will continue to do everything we can to avoid any misunderstandings and logistical "anecdotes" in 2015. So you can put on your pyjamas and fall into a peaceful sleep while we take care of your load!