General Manager of ACME Europe: The Grass is the Greenest for Us in Kaunas
General Manager of ACME Europe Vaida JoneikienėThe story of ACME Europe began in the same way as most good stories do. Three students in the Kaunas Humanitarian Faculty at Vilnius University: Stede Ingram, Tomas Palšis and Stepas Telešius, thought they needed a way to make money. In 1993, the friends started offering English courses. Stede Ingram, being an American, taught the language, while the others looked for clients.
One year later, these active and creative people expanded their activities and became the founders of ACME Europe – they started a business involved in importing and distributing magnetic media (audio and video cassettes) in Lithuania. As the competition grew, they decided to begin the production of video cassettes while obtaining the raw materials necessary for this production from other countries. This production company became ACME Europe, which was then called ACME Baltija.
General Manager of ACME Europe Vaida Joneikienė
Over the years, the company’s activities have gained momentum: In 1996, a branch was opened in Latvia and several thousand ACME branded products were created. Currently, more than 400 products are available from this company, which make life more comfortable, brighter and more enjoyable. Some of these products have been awarded prestigious Lithuanian and international design awards.
Throughout its 23 years of existence, ACME Europe has become the manufacturer of not only ACME branded computer accessories and lighting products, which are distributed worldwide and in Eastern and Central Europe, but has also become an international distributor of well-known brands. Currently, the company is an authorized distributor for Ninebot by Segway, Aula, BeoPlay, Deeper, Fitbit, Vimtag, Jabra, Tech21, Sandisk, Apacer, SBS, Ideal of Sweden, Koomus, Mio, MyScreen, Moshi, Kanex, Verbatim, Port Design, AkRacing, Arozzi and other manufacturers of products in the Baltic States.
Nonetheless, it is hard to believe that a business created by three friends who decided to follow their ambitious youthful ideas in Kaunas has grown into the ACME group of companies. The group currently consists of 40 companies operating in 9 countries and employs as many as 508 employees. ACME Europe is a part of this large family.
Many might ask why ACME Europe started its activities in Kaunas, and after experiencing the market fluctuations, why it did not pull up stakes and settle elsewhere where the grass was greener? According to Vaida Joneikienė, General Manager of the company, the apple did not fall far from the tree. “The founders of the company were born and raised in Kaunas, and they studied here, so it is natural that they decided to implement their first business ideas in Kaunas. This city has many advantages: first and foremost, it is a very convenient place in terms of logistics. The city is not overcrowded, and it contains everything that may be needed to develop a business. Kaunas also has its own kind of provincial charm, so it’s not worth looking for happiness somewhere else where the grass might be greener. I believe that if you know what you want, and you have ambitious goals, then being in your home surroundings can help psychologically, while everything else has to come from yourself,” said the General Manager of ACME Europe.
The General Manager of the company was also pleased with the attention and support of the Kaunas authorities and the changes that have been obviously visible to the organizations developing their businesses here. “I hope that these changes will last, that Kaunas City will be managed efficiently as a business center, and that this will continue to be done by the people who truly love this city. If the city follows this trend, I believe that, in the short term, Kaunas could really become the leading city in Lithuania, and in the long term – in Europe,” said Vaida Joneikienė regarding her thoughts about the changes taking place in the city.