Olayan Enters JV With Mondelez, Algosaibi
The Olayan Group has partnered with the largest snack company in the world, Mondelēz International, and Khalifa Algosaibi Group to expand the distribution of popular food brands in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The new joint venture, Mondelēz Arabia for Trading LLC, will be based in Dhahran with plans to establish 11 branches located in major cities across the Kingdom. The new company will provide more than 300 jobs that will comply with the Kingdom's Saudization program.
At a press conference held in Riyadh, Khaled S. Olayan, chairman of The Olayan Group, said: "We are very pleased to join forces with Mondelēz International once again to strengthen the position of their brands and products that we first began supporting more than 50 years ago when we undertook the distribution of products of General Foods (later Kraft Foods)."
Olayan added: "This latest joint venture, which will further strengthen our ability to serve the Saudi market, will have the added benefit of offering job opportunities to Saudis in a range of fields and locations. It represents a natural evolution of our long and strategic relationship, reaffirming the pride we take in our partnership with Mondelez International, one of the world's leading snack companies."
John Stephenson, director of sales for Mondelēz International GCC, stated: "This is a major step for Mondelēz International that demonstrates our long-term commitment to KSA, a very important and strategic market for us in the Middle East and Africa. The KSA offers significant growth opportunity with strong GDP expansion. We intend to grow with it by investing in product innovation, sales techniques, new-sales systems, and by developing a talented workforce. This next chapter in our long history in KSA will boost our local presence to serve customers and consumers better through extended coverage, and help create jobs for Saudi nationals. The launch of the JV will help meet our ambition of fast-tracking growth globally. I would like to thank the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA) for its support and guidance in helping to bring this partnership to fruition."
Salah Algosaibi, executive director of Khalifa Algosaibi Holding Company, remarked: "We are delighted to be partnering with a global snacks powerhouse and a major multinational like Mondelēz International to reinforce our position and to drive investment in KSA. This partnership really demonstrates that Mondelēz International sees great value in KSA as an important market with a growing population. Together we will deliver an enhanced offering for customers and consumers throughout the Kingdom."
Mondelēz International's iconic brands have been sold in Saudi Arabia for nearly 100 years and include Kraft and Philadelphia cheese, Tang, and Cadbury Dairy Milk. In 2012, Mondelēz International increased production at its Dammam biscuit plant, which also operates as a joint venture with The Olayan Group in response to strong demand both within Saudi Arabia and across the GCC. The plant has the capacity to produce 25,000 tons of biscuits and employs approximately 170 people from six countries, of whom around 30% are Saudi nationals. The popular Oreo biscuit, which celebrated its 100th birthday last year, is made at the plant using over 50% of locally sourced ingredients and is exported across the GCC.
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