Chair of Self-Storage Association Asia and CEO of General Storage Company Helen Ng at a panel...
Onsite with Michel Galka from LAGERBOX Germany
I had the pleasure of visiting LAGERBOX, Germany's leading provider of self-storage solutions, during a recent stop-over in Cologne. Cologne is famed for its cathedral, the largest Gothic church in Northern Europe. With slightly more than a million inhabitants, Cologne is North Rhine Westphalia’s most populous city, which partly explains why LAGERBOX has opened their third self-storage facility there. Cologne's residents, like Singapore's, have had to grapple with a highly competitive rental market and shrinking apartment sizes. This has resulted in high demand for affordable storage space in Cologne. LAGERBOX is poised to meet the storage needs of private households and business customers with their third self-storage facility in Cologne.
Upon my arrival at Cologne Central Station, I was picked up by Michel Galka from LAGERBOX Germany's Marketing department and my host for the morning. He drove me to the self-storage facility in Cologne-Poll, which offers over 1000 storage units. According to Michel, the site is located in a commercial area, which explains its popularity with business storers. Overall, about 70 percent of LAGERBOX's storers are household storers, and the remaining 30 percent, business storers. The storage facility benefits from excellent transportation connectivity, allowing quick access to the highway.
LAGERBOX Cologne-Poll. Source: lagerbox.com
Security is paramount for customers
I viewed a variety of storage units, from lockers to large units, at the facility. I found their three-tier lockers interesting as we have only two tiers at our facilities in Singapore. As the average German male is about is 1.8 m tall, it is probably not too challenging for them to lift their belongings to the highest locker, otherwise, they can make use of one of the many ubiquitous ladders.
Three-tier lockers. Source: lagerbox.com
Customers access their storage units using a unique access code or keycard. In Germany, customers value security highly, in addition to cleanliness, adequate lighting and temperature control. This is why each storage unit is equipped with a box watcher, which alerts customers to movements in and out of their units.
Customers new to the facility need not worry - there are detailed site maps and unit range signs on every storey to ensure they can navigate easily to their storage units.
Detailed site map.
Transportation plays a crucial role in the process of moving house. LAGERBOX offers their customers free use of a van from their fleet on the day of their move. 30 km worth of petrol is included. This allows their customers to save about 100 euros, and spares them the hassle of vehicle rental.
LAGERBOX Cologne Mülheim
Our next destination was LAGERBOX Cologne Mülheim, conveniently situated in close proximity to the Rhine River. The facility can be easily and quickly accessed via the adjacent access road next to the B8 federal highway. This makes it especially accessible for business customers. The facility offers 850 storage units in various sizes and a total of 4,400 m² of lettable storage space across three stories.
LAGERBOX Cologne Mülheim. Source: lagerbox.com
Michel elaborated that the storage facility's transparent large windows offer passing drivers a clear view of its interior. This could spark their curiosity, prompting their to inquire further. At LAGERBOX, design aesthetics take precedence, as each facility is meticulously crafted to exude a modern and trendy ambiance while maintaining the vibrant appeal of the bright yellow corporate color. The cozy customer corner, box shop, customer service counter and signs/posters at each facility are all harmoniously aligned with the corporate branding.
I have long been a fan of LAGERBOX'S brand aesthetics, their clever advertising and their creative wordplay. Their hashtag #gibdendingeneinzuhause has become synonymous with their reputation for quality storage solutions. As such, I was delighted with the opportunity to visit them in Cologne.
Cozy customer corner with sofas in warm yellow. The boxes are sturdy and can be used over and over again.
LAGERBOX Cologne Mülheim was our last stop. I thanked Michel for his time and he dropped me off at the train station.
Visit lagerbox.com for more information.