Record sales reported from first two days of Gulfood

Tuesday, 26 Feb 2008
Category: FMCG / Retail
Countries: United Arab Emirates
Description: New launches and innovative brands capture attention at region's largest food, drink and foodservice event.
New launches and innovative brands capture attention at region's largest food, drink and foodservice event.

Gulfood 2008, the region's largest food, drink and foodservice exhibition, is setting a blistering pace in terms of new deals and business generated, with exhibitors reporting a record rise in the number of business inquiries from the first two days of trading.

A number of multi-million dirham deals were already confirmed by the close of business on the second day. The event, organised by Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC), is also seeing the highest number of new product launches in the show's history, as companies from over 70 countries look to present their latest designs to visitors from around the world.

More that 2,500 companies are exhibiting at this year's event, filling 60,000 square metres at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre and - with a high volume of potential customers - many exhibitors are looking to use Gulfood as an entry-point to new markets. Etihad Salehia, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's largest producer of dates, is reporting strong results from its first two days at the event.

Talal Hamoud, Commercial Manager, Etihad Salehia, said: "This is our third year at Gulfood and we have seen a tremendous 50 percent increase in the number of visitors since last year. We are already receiving requests from Europe, Japan, Iran, Qatar and Bahrain and have begun processing an order from within the Kingdom that will be one of the most significant we have ever received at an exhibition."

Nestle Waters, the world's number one bottled water producer, also reported a strong response from the exhibition so far. "Gulfood is a major event for us. We are definitely seeing a major increase in customer inquiries and anticipate more in the period following the event. Additionally, other elements of the show - like the dedicated seminars - have been tremendously useful for professionals in the drinks industry," said Ahmed Elleissy, Deputy General Manager, Nestle Waters.

With the largest-ever British pavilion at Gulfood 2008, companies from the UK are launching a series of products, ranging from major British brands through to niches products. Key companies on the pavilion include Weetabix, Aunt Bessie's and AG Barr, producers of Irn-Bru.

In particular, the stand is hosting a number of new launches for fish and seafood products. UK fresh fish exports to the GCC have doubled since 2005, with smoked and dried fish reaching almost GBP 1 million (7,219,520 AED) in sales.

Singapore is also benefiting from a strong presence at this year's event. Jimmy Soh, Chairman of the Export Club of the Singapore Food Manufacturers Association (Singapore Pavilion), claimed: "When Singapore started participating in Gulfood five years ago, there were about seven companies participating. Now, we have 22 companies representing Singapore food manufacturing industry and UAE food and beverage imports from Singapore reached AED 445 million in 2007."

Participants at the Singapore pavilion report a 15 percent increase in the confirmed customer requests this year from the first two days of the show.

Helal Saeed Al Marri, Director General, Dubai World Trade Centre, said: "The main driver of the Gulfood exhibition is to promote business development and strengthen trading ties. We are delighted with the reports of strong sales from across the exhibition and are confident that we will be setting new records by the close of the event."

Contact Details

Name: Edward Barnfield
Contact Number: 971 4 3901950
Additional Information: About Gulfood

Organised since 1987, Gulfood is the region's largest and most important industry event of the year and a strategic platform for buyers and sellers to conduct direct business face to face. The exhibition is a showcase for manufacturers, distributors, and suppliers from around the world, representing all of the key sectors within the food and hospitality trade.

In 2007, Gulfood brought together 2,471 companies from 75 countries and featured 56 national pavilions. The exhibition attracted 37,618 visitors from 140 countries including buying delegations not only from the Middle East but as far as: Armenia, Canada, Egypt, India, Jordan, Kenya, Latvia, Malaysia, Morocco, Philippines, Russia, Sudan, Thailand, Tunisia, UK and USA.

About Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC)

As the organiser of Gulfood 2008, Dubai World Trade Centre offers over 28 years' experience of delivering world-class events in the Middle East, providing local, regional and international exhibitors with unmatched expertise and in-depth market knowledge. Our team organises 15 of the largest and most successful international and regional shows in Middle East, providing an ideal platform for business development in the region.

Our commitment to ongoing innovation within the exhibition industry has supported the rapid growth and development of a wide range of business-to-business and business-to-consumer shows, and delivered consistent satisfaction to exhibitors and visitors. DWTC works the region's leading trade bodies and industry associations to ensure that all conferences deliver full value and are built upon the real needs of their specific sector.