By Nelson Belen, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – For those looking to downsize in Rio, organize their home, reduce clutter, move or travel for some time, or are just in need of a place to store important belongings, the recently opened Moby Self Storage is here to help. The new self storage company provides 24-hour security in a modern, technologically advanced facility, with ample parking and easily accessible to Zona Sul (South Zone), Centro and Zona Norte (North Zone).
Launched by a group of British investors, Moby Self Storage opened last August in the historic neighborhood of Gamboa in Rio’s harbor district. One of the principles, British expatriate Harry Taylor, is originally from Oxford, and took inspiration from the self-storage businesses seen in his home country and wanted to provide the same solution and level of service in Rio.
“We wanted to offer the residents of Rio de Janeiro the level of self-storage product that is common in the U.K. or the U.S. today,” Taylor explained. “By that I mean having a purpose-built warehouse, with a 24-hour security entrance, a large private carpark, individually alarmed rooms, loading docks with industrial-sized elevators, and a clean, well-lit, pest-free environment in which to store your possessions safely.”
Of course, starting any business comes with challenges, and for a self-storage business, one of the biggest is the creation of the space itself. In Moby’s case, this involved the construction of a massive 13,000-square-meter warehouse in one of the oldest neighborhoods in Rio, but Taylor was up to the task. “Finishing the construction on time and on budget was challenging, but we managed it!” he exclaimed.
Also, introducing the self-storage concept to Rio, where it had not previously existed, at least not on the level of Moby, comes with other unique issues. “Without question, educating the market here that this product [self storage] exists will be our biggest challenge,” says Taylor, “We need to demonstrate how self storage can help people here de-clutter their lives, and use Moby Self Storage like a spare bedroom for their apartment or as an extra storage room for their business.”
For a country in the midst of a deep recession, self storage is argualbly arriving to Rio at the perfect time. “In these economically difficult times,” explains Taylor, “it makes sense for growing families to use their space better to avoid increased rent on a larger apartment, or for businesses to put their spare furniture, extra stock or filings in a cheaper space per square meter than cluttering up their expensive offices or shops.”
Moby provides plenty of options depending on the client’s needs and budget, ranging from units as small as one square meter to as large as thirty square meters. Custom sized units are also available. Importantly, all the units, from the largest to the smallest, are protected by their own security alarm.
“Security is such an important factor here in Brazil, and having the very best security system for self storage, which includes every room or box having an individual alarm was a big challenge to install here.” Taylor added, “Without doubt it sets us apart from other storage warehouses.”
With the first Moby location firmly establishing itself, Taylor and the team already have plans for scaling Moby Self Storage to help even more of Brazil’s spatially-challenged residents.
“We will be opening at least one more store here in Rio next year, and also opening our first store in São Paulo next year.” Taylor expressed, “We have a long-term plan for expansion here in Brazil over the next ten years.”