Vocational Visit Lidingö

The island of Lidingö (pronounced Leedinga) is situated 15km north east of Stockholm where the archipelago of Stockholm, a unique maritime landscape of more than 30,000 islands, begins. Lidingö has a population of around 43,000. The most famous residents of Lidingö were Bjorn Ulvaeus and Agnetha Faltskog of  ABBA  Another not so known person to us is Raoul Wallenberg (August 4, 1912 – July 17, 1947?) a Swedish humanitarian who worked in Budapest and Hungary during World War 2 to rescue Jews from the Holocaust. Between July and December 1944, he issued protective passports and housed Jews in buildings established as Swedish territory, saving tens of thousands of lives. This is a great story and there is a satchel as a monument at the ruins of where his parents onced lived. Check out http://www.raoulwallenberg.net

As a vocational visit I was taken to a company called Bonver  on Lidingö and met Rotarian Cecelia Versteech. Cecelia and her husband ran a service station in the early 80’s where they also rented videos. They expanded to organise distribution of videos to other service stations and Bonver was created in 1983. Today Bonver Logistics is the Nordic region’s largest distributor of home entertainment products. They distribute products in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland and Iceland and have the distribution rights to most Paramount, 20th Century Fox, MGM, Universal, Walt Disney and Warner Bros. Located in a disused margarine factory on the shores of Lidingö they pack and distribute DVDs to over 3000 customers throughout the region. Approximately 65% of all video in the Nordic countries is distributed by Bonver Logistics. I was given a guided tour of the modern ordering and packing facilities. Most film distributors have a release date for movies so distribution timeframes are critical. They do not use Swedish Post for their distribution but rather the main competitor Bring as they are cheaper and will pickup 2-3 times per day. The DVDs are pressed in places like Poland and shipped to Bonver. They have a vast warehouse of movies which is space rented by the movie companies. Bonver also have a digital arm called Film2home (http://www.film2home.se) and I saw the team digitalising movies for download and adding subtitles in the 5 Nordic languages. They employ 240 people with two other warehouses and is one of Lidingö’s important businesses. Thanks Cecelia for giving up your time.

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