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About Us


Bernasos Co. was founded by Mr. Basel Kestaniotuis is one of the earliest stationeries specializing in writing supplies ,Mathematical instruments. and New Year gifts at the time. Our father, Mr. Rifat may allah rest his soul in peace, bought it in the 1960s from the Lucas and Cyprus Kestaniotuis brothers after a long journey of self-employment that he started it at the age of twelve. It was one of the earliest companies to importer stationary, Mathematical and surveying instruments, and also won many awards as the best distributor in the Middle East from the German company Carl Zeiss.

Mid 80's

During this period there was a wide openness of the market, especially in the field of import. Many importers began to appear in the field of stationary, which made huge profits up to five times the original importer, Agent or supplier However, my father believed not to compete with other importers in their field of conviction and he explained it by saying "everyone was created for his own purpose" and was fully convinced of what he had reached. In result, there was a large shift in the market share of workers in stationary fields and there was a huge jump in the size of the market and competitors for which Bernasos didn’t have a large share of it and that didn’t Consistent with its previous status and history in this field.


My father passed away and I had to face at an early age (15 years) family responsibilities, continue my education and start my career in the store. I started practicing my responsibilities Since then and all we had is one branch in Sharif Street with just 12 employees. in addition to the lack of management resulting from not having a full-time management at the work because of my study conditions. But by studying the market and identifying the trends of customers I found that they prefer to deal directly with the supplier or the agent even if we sell at the same exact price .


I set my strategy based on going to the global market and dealing directly with global manufacturers and my future goals were concentrated in two things: (entering the world of manufacturing, and to manufacture what I can market and sell - export and access to display our products in international fairs) In 1992, I traveled to Frankfurt - Germany - the largest exhibition of stationery products in the world.Thanks to God I had achieved the dream of Manufacturing. in 1999 as well as achieving the dream of displaying Bernasos products in the exhibition in 2005. We started importing directly from abroad and this achieved a high profit margin, but the turnover rate of the products was slow because in the end consumer and companies were heading directly to small shops in Fagala, which could compete with the price because of the burdens and administrative expenses, and at the same time the most famous brands in the market Have been already assigned to Egyptian agents. But at the same time Bernasos was the main distributor of the products of these brands, which represented a strong presence in the market.


We decided to exploit the strong presence of the name Bernasos in the market by applying the concept of (OEM) Original Equipment Manufacturer for the first time in Egypt stationary stores. Based on the concept of (OEM) that the local seller to identify a trademark of its own and officially registered and then make an agreement with the international specialized factories to produce items for the local seller in his trade name and this achieves a global quality level and a significant decrease in price. As our previous policy was to manufacture what was sold, we went to OEM production under the brand name "Bernasos" and then changed to "IML" and "Art Line".


We decided to to benefit from of the advantages of the investment and exemptions law for the new cities.We have set up a sales center for our products in 6th of October City to be strategically the main center and to cover the future needs of the city promising expansion as well as the needs of existing factories in it. Then, we decided to invest an initial amount of 3/4 million pounds which was actually spent in 1996 and at this time a sudden decision was issued to cancel the tax exemption for commercial projects. However, we did not give up and sent more than 47 applications, all of which were rejected, and met with all working Employees in tax exemption, the head of the department, the minister of finance, and the minister of housing and urban communities. However, after a long struggle, we were able to obtain in 2004 the approval of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers for our right to tax exemption.


we were able to get the Nikon authorization for the surveying instruments.


We were able to get the approval of Nikon Company to create a maintenance center for Nikon devices a mirror image of the Nikon Maintenance Center in Japan and one of the engineers was sent to take a training course which was followed more often by training courses and courses to identify the modern generations of devices.


We started manufacturing box files in the city of Qaha where we had a large warehouse. An exempt joint stock company has been established in accordance with the Investment Law No. (8) for a period of 5 years and a modification with the upgrading license has been issued for the building The strategy was to use the appropriate technology for us in Egypt, represented by technology intensive and simple mechanism to take advantage of Egypt's competitive advantage of cheap labor. Through our experience in the market we have been able to expand the volume of the manufactured and assembled products in our factory significantly and with strategic decision to be the size of the sold products in our branches allow quantitative production through our factory (mass production). we were able to hold our feet in every branch opened. Our branches sell wholesale, retail price, supplies, and offers, receiving devices for maintenance and selling survey instruments.


The microscope division of Nikon Holland has been assigned to Bernasos to be responsible for selling its products in the Egyptian market to add more credit. As a continuation of the policy of deepening industrialization, we were able to obtain the approval of Nikon Japan for a license to assemble some survey instruments to enjoy the comparative advantage in the tenders and contracts of the Egyptian government for the foreign component product. And through this development Bernasos Co. regained the market share and position, we have started the process the plan to improve profitability, The best choice was to be in the first place of distribution in the market, which is Fagala, and the main obstacle was that there is no ownership of the shops, but mostly rent your grandfather. The best choice was to be in the first place of distribution in the market, which is Fagala, and the main obstacle was that there is no ownership of the shops, but mostly for rent only.


Through the relationship we have gained over the years, we have been able to visit world-class exhibitions. And we were able to open a market to export our products in Arab markets such as: Iraq - Saudi Arabia - Jordan - Kuwait - Yemen - Libya - Syria and in African countries such as: Sudan - Kenya - Ethiopia – Mauritius. This has led to increased demand for our products and hence the need to expand manufacturing. We were able to gain the trust of Nikon Vision co. and then get the authorization for the magnifying glasses.


The box file and Pencil Factory was established in the UAE. Initial analyzes pointed to achieve the economic feasibility we have to do the establishment of the project in the UAE to avoid dumping problems and enjoy customs exemptions in case of export to any Arab country. In addition, the UAE does not have customs on raw materials or machinery and there are no taxes or social insurance.


We had to expand horizontally to increase our competitiveness and spread. The Nasr City branch was opened next to Samir and Ali, who opened his branch in this place 15 years ago. Thanks to God, Zaker Hussein Street, where our branch is located, became a market for stationary shops in Nasr City and neighboring areas.


We continued to open the branches (the El-mohndseen and then Alexandria. Thanks to God every day our sales steadily increased significantly with the value added and our continuity products.


We discovered that the scale of administrative problems worsened with horizontal and vertical expansion and it was necessarily to use advanced technology, which we were considered the first to use it since 1994.We believe that administrative development according to the correct scientific bases is the right way to achieve competitiveness and thus the ability to continue and grow in the market.


The opening of 10th of Ramadan branch The Fifth Settlement land was received The first steps in the process of enhancing the competitiveness of the company started by participating in the following five development programs:

  1. Institutional development program in cooperation with the Egyptian Industrial Modernization Center.
  2. Program for the development of technological equipment in cooperation with the Egyptian Industry Modernization Center.
  3. (ERP) systems capabilities and development program in cooperation with the Egyptian Industrial Modernization Center.
  4. .Distinguished graduate program in cooperation with the Egyptian Industry Modernization Center and Future Generation Association.
  5. Franchise Development Program in cooperation with EFDA and the Egyptian Industry Modernization Center.