According to Franchise Middle East, organizers of the two-day exhibition cum conference, 40% of the participating brands are from the UAE, 25% from GCC countries, while the remaining 35% are international.
“The Franchise and SME sectors are the fastest growing sectors in the GCC, unleashing the greatest opportunities for business ownership and employment,” says Gaurav Marya, Managing Director of Franchise Middle East. “There is tremendous entrepreneurial energy in the region, and this is fuelled by business-friendly environment provided by most governments.”
Among the GCC brands that will turn heads at Franchise UAE 2012 will be Shawarma Xpress of Bahrain, a quick-service restaurant brand franchise that began operations in 2001, and now has 10 outlets. Founded by two brothers, Saleh and Firas AI Khor, this innovative concept was developed after careful planning, intensive market research and lessons learnt within the Fast Food Industry. Shawarma Xpress has since opened in the Eastern Region of Saudi Arabia and Qatar through Franchising and is currently in negotiations for a number of Master Franchises within the other Gulf States and India.
From the UAE, the franchise brand ‘Mini Monsters’ represents an innovative fun place for the entire family, with an indoor play area that has the largest slide in the UAE. Mini Monsters offers different themed play frames, party zones and toddler zones for younger children, as well as a café for parents. In addition, there are fun classes and party facilities.
Mini Monsters was formed to tap into the burgeoning market for innovative leisure and entertainment. Through franchising, Mini Monsters seeks to expand internationally through likeminded partners, as the promoters believe there is tremendous potential for children’s leisure and entertainment industry.
The Diet Care franchise brand, established in 2005, was among the first companies in Kuwait committed to helping people manage their weight, overall health and well being. Today it has grown into a leading provider of health, nutritional food and weight management programs, catering to hundreds of members on a daily basis, as well as to around 70 outlets located across Kuwait, where diet and health products are sold directly to the consumers.
“Franchising has undergone a dramatic transformation in recent times, with the focus moving away from retail and food to consumer services, education, wellness, beauty products and entertainment,” says Marya. “Factors that weigh strong in favour of the Middle East emerging as a top franchise hotspot include the presence of thousands of high net worth individuals (HNIs) and the fact that investors from Libya, Egypt, Syria and Iran are looking to start small businesses.”
The Middle East is estimated to have over 400,000 HNIs, each with liquid assets of more than $5m, making it an ideal region for growth of franchising and SMEs.
‘Franchise UAE 2012’ will offer huge opportunities in all areas of franchising, retailing and licensing, bringing together over 100 international and UAE brands, and participation of over 7000 business buyers.
‘Anytime Fitness’, the world’s largest 24-hour, co-ed fitness brand whose master franchise is held by Al Muftah Group of Qatar, and which is seeking to aggressively expand across the region, is supporting Franchise UAE 2012 as an Associate Sponsor.
Franchise UAE 2012 is supported by DCCI, Heels and Deals, Ruwad Establishment, and IBPC Dubai and also media partners such as Infobahn Consultancy; AZ Franchising Italy; BeMyDealer.com, Turkey; Buybrand, Russia and FDS Franchise.com, UK.
Wednesday, April 25- 2012 @ 15:45 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.