Mars plans $150m Saudi investment
Dubai, March 11, 2012
Mars GCC, one of the region's leading chocolate manufacturers based in Dubai, has announced plans to invest upto $150 million into its Saudi operations over the next 10 years.
As part of its expansion plans, Mars Saudi Arabia has already made an initial investment of $60 million to set up its new factory in the Kingdom.
The company recently broke ground on its new, hitech manufacturing facility located in King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC), Saudi Arabia. This will be the second factory for Mars in the region after Dubai.
The facility, which will begin operation by 2014 producing Galaxy and Galaxy Jewels, will be one of the largest chocolate factories in the GCC region.
Speaking at the launch, Mohamed Safieddine, the general manager at Mars Saudi, said, “The construction of a new chocolate manufacturing site in the region is a key enabler of our roadmap to growth strategy. With our network operating at capacity, we have made the decision that this investment is the best way forward for us to create capacity.'
'The new site will increase our capabilities and flexibility, allowing us to compete effectively in a growing market, and to deliver fresh product to our consumers throughout the GCC and beyond,' he noted.
'King Abdullah City will offer us the logistical infrastructure, including the largest sea port in the region, to transform our Saudi operation into one of our main regional hubs to service neighboring markets,' he added.
Fahd Al-Rasheed, the managing director and CEO of KAEC, said: “Our long-term partnership further proves that the economic city has the ability to attract leading companies from diverse industries from across the globe. We are pleased to have Mars Incorporated establish their presence at KAEC’s Industrial Valley as the world’s leading confectionary.”
The facility will be built to Leed Green Building standards and initially employ 60 Mars associates on the project team.
A further 300-400 associates are anticipated to be brought onboard once the factory is fully operational. Mars will be developing and nurturing Saudi talent through offering training, internships and partnerships with local educational establishments.
The project will particularly open up opportunities for Saudi women in fields such as marketing, sales, finance, engineering, as well as research and development, said Al-Rasheed.
Ahmed Linjawy, the president of Industry and City Services in KAEC, said the leasing of the first phase of the Industrial Valley has been completed and also the second phase has been launched.
'The Industrial Valley has been designed with global planning standards for industrial zones to become a hub for a large number of local and global industrial companies looking to establish projects either through ownership or long-term lease,' he stated.
'We treat each client as unique and see to it that we can support requirements of both local and international manufacturers. Mars is one of the largest and most respected names in the confectionery industry,' Linjawy said.
'Their presence is another example of why leading international manufacturers would establish their new factories at the Industrial Valley in KAEC, he added.-TradeArabia News Service