Franchise sector tipped for growthIndustry experts predict US$1bn in annual growth as Franchising Middle East show closes
The Middle East will see exponential growth in the franchise sector; that is the message to come from the fifth edition of the Franchising Middle East trade show, which came to a close this week.
Over 70 brands from 25 countries attended the exhibition, all with one aim in mind: to take their brands global. With an excellent visitor turnout, Franchising Middle East looks certain to have catapulted some regional brands onto the world stage.
“The Middle East market is very exciting and dynamic. Our expectations for this market are huge and already, following the Franchising Middle East exhibition, the feedback has been very positive.
“The economy of the UAE is growing, entrepreneurs are evolving, and the service industry is developing. This all points to a wealth of opportunities for franchising,” said Mathew Shay, President of the IFA (International Franchise Association) visiting Dubai for the first time.
IFA represents over 1,400 franchise companies worldwide and is heavily involved in policies and public relations concerning the franchise sector.
According to Shay, the UAE’s franchise business is worth over AED 1.1 billion, and that figure looks set to grow in the near future.
“More international companies are showing keen interest in Dubai and, with the US economy being stagnated, the local market is grabbing the opportunities,” he said.
Exhibitors at this week’s show were also confident of seeing new business opportunities.
Doha-based Global Franchising used the show to promote its car and truck rental services.
“We are looking for partners across the Middle East. We have received an excellent response from the show,” said Mana Ibrahim Al Mana, Vice President and CEO, Global Franchising.
Formosa Fruits from Taiwan exhibited for the first time. Business Manager T C Lee hopes that the company will soon be exporting its wholesale fruits into the UAE as a result of meetings held during the show.
The company launched two new products at the show: Dubai Waffle – an oven designed to bake different flavours of waffle in the shape of the Burj Al Arab; and an ice cream maker offering five unique flavours with fresh fruit.
“The Dubai market is booming and the business model here is easy. Once we have penetrated this market we hope to enter other Middle East countries and Iran,” Lee said.
Abdul Rehman Falaknaz, President of International Expo Consults (IEC), organisers of the Franchising Middle East exhibition, said that the show had proved a phenomenal success.
“Franchising is the single most productive system of distribution for a brand. It connects the operation with different parts of the world and enables companies to go global in a cost effective manner. The success of this week’s trade show is testament to the success of the franchise system and we look forward to seeing more regional brands become global names as a result of this week’s business,” he said.
Franchising Middle East is the largest international franchise exhibition in the Middle East and is supported by the IFA (International Franchise Association).