Dubai Al Kabeer Group, a major local producer of frozen foods, is planning to open a 50 million riyal (Dh48.9 million) plant in Saudi Arabia to capitalise on the country’s hospitality surge, a senior company official told Gulf News.
“We thought of doing it in Dubai Industrial City but then we thought [we] might as well do it where the market is. We would meet seasonal demand, especially during hajj [and] throughout the year for Umrah and supply the hotels that have come up in Makkah with ready-made heat-n-serve food,” said Ahmad Khan, director of the group.
“The pilgrims usually don’t have a cooking facility and need ready-made food, so it is an opportunity to supply the three, four and five-star hotels in Makkah and Madinah.”
The plant will be based in Jeddah with a 2,000-tonne production capacity, he said.
The company applied for a trade licence that it expects within three months and will start building immediately afterwards.
The factory will produce Saudi-customised food products to cater to the local market, he said.
It will face competition from major player Americana, which tops frozen foods sales in Saudi Arabia, followed by Al Kabeer, he said.
Al Kabeer exported Dh250 million in food products to Saudi Arabia last year.
It already has plants in Dubai, Sharjah, Bahrain and India. It is also looking to expand its plant in New Delhi, Khan noted.