50 Expert stores converts and re-launches Veikko Kone-chain

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50 Expert-stores in Finland will start a new consumer electronics chain next month.
Today they revealed that they will start a cooperation with Sonera and re-launch the Veikko Kone-chain that Sonera dropped in 2012.
“Our member are very happy to build a great collaboration and a significant partnership with Sonera”, says the the chain’s CEO Ilkka Viskari.

Expert ASA will from 15 September be the only licensed Expert-chain in Finland. A dozen of the independent merchants in former Expert Finland have signed a new agreement and will from now be a part of Expert ASA instead. But approximately 50 merchants have chosen to say no to Expert ASA to go their own way.
The ones continuing as Expert-merchants are mostly of a bigger format.
”We have offered a contract to traders we think are suitable to our store network now and in the future˝, Expert ASA’s CEO Mika Aro tells Talousanomat.
”Expert stores will continue to be present at about 90 percent of Finland’s most important centres. We are still about 10 stores from the goal”, Aro says.
Today the merchant cooperative revealed they will start working with Sonera. This means that former sports and electronics-label Veikko Kone will put up its brand again. Sonera closed down Veikko Kone in 2012, selling five stores to Expert ASA.
In terms of number of stores, the new chain will be bigger than Gigantti for example. The agreement also covers several years of partnership under which the chain moves to sell Sonera’s mobile and broadband services to consumers and businesses.
“Sonera’s stores are focused on Finland’s largest cities. It is very important that we expand our store coverage also outside these cities”, says sales director Jyrki Alamäki at Sonera.
“We welcome the fact that the Finnish entrepreneurship efforts are made on the basis of competition in the industry. In particular, mobile broadband, television and entertainment services have strong growth and offers good opportunities for a successful business”, says Jyrki Alamäki.