Ria visits Georgia and Armenia as part of Eastern European expansion

There is a first time for everything. For Ria, it was visiting two countries that intersect Europe and Asia, as part of the company’s expansion in Central, Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).

Staff from offices across Europe travelled to Tbilisi, the capital city of Georgia, then to Yerevan in Armenia as part of a series of Business Events organised by the company in May.

These events are an opportunity to connect with partners while providing an ‘on-the-ground’ perspective. And so it went that Ria staff from offices in Germany, Italy and Spain travelled to Georgia, which borders, Russia, Turkey, Armenia, and Azerbaijan.

 

Georgia Event

Ria’s Alla Shelest presents at the Ria Business Event on money transfer in Georgia which was also attended by Georgia’s Central Bank. 

 

The Georgia event was very interactive and well-attended, with the National Bank of Georgia (Central Bank) also attending in order to hear more about Ria’s growth plans in Georgia and our objective to provide a strong network for those that need reliable remittance services.

According to the National Bank Data, Georgia received $1.1 billion in remittances in 2015, with around 40 percent of that coming from Russia, followed by Greece, Italy and the United States.

Spain and Germany made it into the top 10 countries sending remittances to the country, with 3 percent and 2 percent of the total inflows, respectively.

Patricio Rojas Hubner, Business Development Manager for Germany, spoke about his market, saying, “Travelling to Georgia presented a great opportunity to connect directly with current and new partners, to provide an update on our business growth and our plans for this region. It also allowed us to demonstrate Ria’s potential in Georgia, while staying top of mind.

“Ria is building a strong, connected network and we hope by planting these seeds, we will see returns in the form of an improved service for customers in the coming months,” Hubner concluded.

 

Crossing the border

Armenia’s capital, Yerevan, is around five hours drive away from Tbilisi. Like Georgia, Armenia has a similar reliance on remittances. According to World Bank data, the country received an estimated $1.6 billion in 2015.

As well as putting on another well-attended and lively event, Ria members were able to visit the National Bank of Armenia (Central Bank) as part of the business trip along with other business partners.

Alla Shelest, Ria’s Business Development Manager for Central Europe and CIS Countries, who visited both countries, presented an overview of the business and marketing strategies for top remittance sending countries, which include Germany, France, Spain and Italy, before other members of the team presented on their topics.

“Ria has a lot of potential in Georgia and Armenia, and we have been expanding our network in Central Europe, Eastern Europe and CIS Countries,” she explained. “There is a lot of seasonal movement as well as significant remittance flows in this region, and we are finding some very good partners here.

“Overall, the feedback following the events has been very positive and we look forward to signing several new partnerships in the coming months,” Shelest affirmed.

 

HayPost

HayPost, the national postal operator in Armenia and one of Ria’s business partners has a network of over 600 locations that offer a sending and receiving remittance service with Ria.