By Andy Sambidge
Eat Greek and Ribs & Burgers set to open in emirate before the end of 2012
FoodFund International is set to open two new brands in Dubai in the next eight or nine months, and will also be opening The Meat Company in Cassablanca, Morocco.
Talking at the Caterer Middle East conference, Joseph Chalfoun, area general manager of FoodFund International, said: “One brand will be called Eat Greek and the other will be a franchiseable concept called Ribs & Burgers."
FoodFund International already operates The Meat Company, Ribs and Rumps and Tribes in the Middle East.
“The chairman has Greek heritage and has a soft spot for the food and so that’s the reason behind Eat Greek," added Chalfoun in comments published by Hotelier Middle East.
He added that the firm would "test" the concepts in Dubai before exporting them to London, with plans to open in other key markets.
“Our restaurants are well-received in Dubai and it’s a good place to see how they will do,” he said.
The UAE restaurant market is set to grow 30 percent to $780m in the next four years and will be dominated by American-style fast food brands, an industry expert said in November.
Branded table-service restaurants generate about $600m a year in the UAE, a number set to swell to $780 by 2015, said Stefan Breg, founder of Tribe Restaurant Creators in Abu Dhabi.
In a poll of dining outlets in the Gulf state, Tribe found American brands comprised up to 47 percent of food and beverage offers in Dubai malls.
Homegrown restaurants, by comparison, made up between 8-17 percent.
"The chairman has Greek heritage and has a soft spot for the food and so thatâ€™s the reason behind Eat Greek" - are they running a business here or setting up restaurants for the chairman to eat?! Greek cuisine is part of the Mediterranean menus that exist in the middle east served in Lebanese and Turkish restaurants; obviously since there are more of them here than the Greeks!
I wonder if the chairman likes the taste of money more than his Greek salad...