Popular Indian snacks headed to Dubai in Choithrams deal

Choithrams will distribute five of India's most popular snack brands in partnership with Future Consumer Limited
Popular Indian snacks headed to Dubai in Choithrams deal
Middle East supermarket chain Choithrams is partnering up with India’s Future Consumer Limited.
By Bernd Debusmann Jr
Mon 18 Feb 2019 03:50 PM

Middle East supermarket chain Choithrams is partnering up with India’s Future Consumer Limited (FCL) to bring popular Indian snacks to the UAE market for the first time, the company announced on Monday.

At Gulfood in Dubai, the two companies signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) that will see Choithrams initially market, distribute and retail five of Future Consumer’s most popular brands, including the ready-to-eat Tasty Treat brand of snacks, sauce and dip brand Sangi’s Kitchen, flour brand Desi Atta company, organic and natural food brand Mother Earth and Desi Atta Company, a kitchen essentials brand that produces flour, rice cereals and spices.

“These are very large brands within the [Indian] diaspora at large,” said Ashni Biyani, FCL’s managing director.

T Choithrams & Sons CEO Rajiv Warrier added that the partnership is partly a response to consumer feedback from the UAE’s large Indian community. Over time, he said that the partnership could potentially be a AED 50 million ($13.6 million) business.

“Choithrams is a brand that is really focused on range and making sure we meet the requirements of all kinds of consumers,” he said. “Future works really well with the Indian consumer, and since we have Indian families are consumers in many of our stores across the UAE, it really works well. [These snacks] plug at their hearts.”

Biyani added that the partnership marks a starting point, with FCL believing there is “much more” opportunity to expand its offerings through Choithrams in the UAE.

“This is just the beginning as far as we are concerned,” she said. “We have a long, long way to go and we’re hoping that we will learn from each other.”

In India, FCL has 30 brands, many of which Biyani said may eventually be distributed in the UAE. She added that the company hopes to have the products on UAE shelves in as soon as a few weeks.

“There are some products where we’ve already managed to do the labelling as per the requirements here. Some products will be in sooner than others,” she said. “It’s just a matter of logistically timing it. Our teams are gearing up to have these products on the shelf in 45 days.”

FCL - which is part of Future Group - operates over 24 million square feet of retail space in more than 350 cities across India, with an estimated 500 million customers visiting their stores annually.

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