We give a warm welcome to our new members Thomas och Anette Berglund. Thomas led the expansion of Securitas to Portugal 31 years ago and during his time as CEO of Securitas the company became the world’s largest security company with revenues growing from $750 million to $7 billion and employing over 250,000 people. Now he is settled in Portugal together with his wife Anette Berglund, who also has a background in Securitas working with training and communication
Thomas first came to Portugal 31 years ago, in November 1989. By then, Securitas had bought the security company G4 and was about to expand and establish their business in Portugal. Before the purchase of G4, Securitas had only been active on the Swedish market and this expansion was the companies first encounter outside of Sweden.
“It was a bit rocky at first, labor-intensive companies like Securitas take a lot of time and management to coordinate and it is really important to find the right kind of people,” Thomas says. After the kind of rocky start, things really took off for Securitas. Actually, things went so well that the establishment-process of Securitas in Portugal was used as a guiding example for the company’s further expansions to other markets.
During one of his many weekend trips whilst working in Portugal, Thomas discovered Sintra the municipality and town which has been classified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Thomas fell in love with the beautiful surroundings and 20 years ago, the couple bought their house and since December last year, this house is also the couple’s main residence.
During their many visits and stays in Portugal, the couple has had the opportunity to experience the transformation of Portugal to the modern country that it is today. Almost nothing is the same as it was during the first visit, 31 years ago. A lot has improved. “The Portuguese infrastructure today is very well functioning and the Portuguese industries have modernized,” Thomas says but also mentions that he feels that Lisbon has kept its original charm.
There are many reasons why the two of them have kept coming back to Portugal over all these years and to why they are now permanently living here. Anette says that they find that Portugal has “the whole package” with its kind and open-minded people, beautiful nature, pleasant climate and lots of good food and wine.
They are now both looking forward to becoming a part of the CLS-community and to meet and connect with both old and new members.
The CLS would like to once again welcome Thomas and Anette to our community!