How has Tipax evolved over its 55-year history to its current leading position in the Iranian courier market?
My father established Tipax 55 years ago as a courier service covering a wide range of activities. As a result of the war with Iraq, some of the services we were offering could not be done privately and passed over to the government's hands. Moreover, our activities abroad were interrupted; 35 years ago we had international branches in London, Frankfurt, and Dubai; however, we had to close them down as we were unable to operate internationally. However, with the lifting of sanctions the doors for Iran and for Tipax are opening. Currently, we are the biggest private courier company in Iran, with 200 branches across the country and 3,000 staff. In order to grow as a holding we are diversifying our activities. First, we started two years ago in the retail business managing three brands in Iran: Lion of Porches, Pepe Jeans, and Pablosky. We are also active in the decoration and furniture industry, mainly office equipment, and are now entering the e-commerce market.
How important is it for Tipax to have an extensive global network of branches abroad and connect with foreign counterparts?
It is part of our strategy to expand to other countries by opening branches. We were able to choose our partners and become international 35 years ago, and now we have the opportunity to move abroad again. We have been signing contracts and partnering with foreign counterparts and are also in talks with European courier services to bring them to Iran and to be our partner in Europe. However, we are not just looking at Europe; at the end of this year, we are going to open a new office in Dubai. The Middle East is definitely another region that we are focusing right now.
How do you assess the competition in the courier market in Iran?
Although there is a lot of competition in the market, Tipax has maintained its leading position for 55 years because we have the trust of Iranian society. People rely on our services, which is our main advantage in comparison to other local or foreign competitors. We provide the fastest courier services in Iran; our price, speed, and accuracy are our three main strengths. Looking at our portfolio, half of our clients are from the general public, while the other half belongs to the business community. In this sense, we do not target any specific sector. Tipax is currently one of the few logistic hubs in Iran, and we are concentrating on modernization more than before. We are conscious of the strategic position this country has in the Middle East to connect Europe and Asia and are going to benefit from it after the lifting of sanctions.
What are your expectations for the year ahead?
We expect much more after the signing of the JCPOA with regard to the ambitious plans the country has for the future. However, I am sure that next year will be much better to do business and Tipax is drafting a plan for this. We will expand outside of Iran by opening an office in Dubai and other branches in Europe and the Middle East. The plan is to have more than 500 branches and to increase our staff to 5,000 people in the courier service. The final objective is to become an international courier service that can compete among the top five in the world with well-known companies like DHL, FedEx, or TNT.