- Abu Dhabi – Rami Samih
Date: 09 November 2020 Alan Smith, CEO of Agthia Group, which is based in Abu Dhabi, said that the company is now in the process of evaluating the non-binding offer it received regarding business consolidation with Al Foah, the world’s largest company for processing and packing dates, with the aim of establishing one of the top 10 companies in Food and beverage sector in the Middle East and North Africa.
Smith added in an interview with the Economic Statement that if the offer is approved, this will be with the aim of the company’s endeavors to diversify and increase the range of its offered products and enhance its competitive capabilities to reach new markets, explaining that the company’s new leadership team is actively exploring opportunities for expansion in new brands and markets. It allows us to expand the reach of value-added retail products and distribution across markets.
Smith explained, “Agthia is constantly looking to expand the reach of its product categories and varieties and its offerings in the market, explaining that the company is constantly exploring the best ways and means to help it strengthen its business, enhance its existing divisions and departments, and create others that support these trends. He added: “As the Board of Directors and the new leadership team continue this strategic review, the team has already taken bold steps such as strengthening the Consumer Business Division and creating two new marketing departments, in addition to mergers and acquisitions, with the aim of seeking new business opportunities locally and internationally.
Smith pointed out that this continued focus on gradually changing the efficiency and form of the leadership team reinforces Agthia’s firm commitment to contribute to maintaining its leadership across many core categories and brands, in addition to protecting the interests of its shareholders.
In response to a question about expectations for the company’s results in the fourth quarter of 2020, Smith said: “Of course, we have a positive outlook towards the fourth quarter. At the beginning of the year, our plans focused on expanding the spread of our products globally, and so far, these steps have been successful, especially as we focused on Maintaining strong relationships with our partners in the retail sector, in addition to keeping pace with the increasing requirements of e-commerce, as we have looked for greater opportunities to expand our offerings over the Internet.
The CEO said that the market is witnessing further improvement, as retail channels have been relatively strong over the past few months, while we are witnessing a trend in increasing corporate, hotel, restaurant and hotel channels with the economy gradually opening up after the closure phase due to the pandemic, so we are very optimistic that This positive path will continue to increase with the gradual return to normalcy. He stressed that the company’s flexibility is further supported by its strong financial position and available cash flow, in addition to setting up a plan to reset business fundamentals with a focus on growth in the next phase.
He stated that the company signed an agreement to terminate the commercial relationship with ‘Capri Sun’ in December 2020, and the trademark will be returned to its owner as of January 2021, which led to the cancellation of the balance of assets and inventory worth 9.5 million dirhams, indicating that the company will not exclude at the present time any Other products from her portfolio due to excise tax, but she is constantly evaluating her product range.
On the company’s expansion plans in regional or international markets, Smith said: “We aspire to constantly expand into new markets, in addition to our continuous endeavor to increase the categories and classes of our products and our offerings. In addition, we will continue to consider geographic expansion plans, as this is the next step. Natural for us to maintain growth.
The water sector
Regarding the fierce competition between brands specializing in selling water, the CEO of Agthia said, “Our Al Ain water has been classified as the most preferred brand by consumers in the UAE, noting that Agthia aims to design products that To contribute positively to the local and regional market, and indeed Al Ain Water has kept innovation and sustainability at the core of the brand, and we have introduced products such as Zero sodium-free, water fortified with Vitamin D and Al Ain plant water, and this is what makes Al Ain water very popular among consumers. And it also confirms the commitment to meet the needs of consumers in the local market and abroad.
Strong financial position
Agthia Group CEO affirmed that Agthia is committed to preserving our strong financial position and available cash liquidity, as well as maintaining its market leadership across major categories, and supporting and protecting shareholder value, stressing that the measures taken by the company will support its success in the future.
Alan Smith stated, ‘Agthia is already playing an active role in the food and beverage sector, and the current government-supported shareholding of 51% represents an additional impetus for Agthia’s strategic partnership with local authorities, adding:’ We cooperate with the government and work closely with our partners. In working to ensure the continued supply of basic food products to fully serve the local community.