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Saudi beverages group eyes $1bn sales

Dammam, February 18, 2012

Aujan Industries, the largest privately-owned, independent soft drink company in the Middle East, has announced that its sales will pass the $1 billion mark in 2012, driven by organic growth in core markets and expansion into new markets.

Ahead of its participation at Gulfood 2012, one of the world’s biggest annual food and hospitality shows, Aujan Industries reports that its total sales in 2011 reached close to $900 million.

The company witnessed strong growth across its three beverage brands, with a total exceeding 120 million cases sold during the year.

Sales of Rani, the Middle East’s number one juice brand, increased by 22 per cent year-on-year, said a senior official.

“In the past year, Aujan Industries has consolidated its leading position in established markets while expanding into new territories,” said Kadir Gunduz, president & CEO of  Aujan Industries.

"In 2011, sales of Aujan’s Vimto cordial passed the 30 million bottle mark for the first time, increasing by more than 20 per cent year-on-year in most markets, driven by exceptional demand during Ramadan."

"In addition, other non-cordial Vimto variants continued accelerating, delivering a growth rate of almost 40 per cent year-on-year. The company’s Barbican brand also witnessed strong growth, with sales increasing by 12 per cent year-on-year," he noted.

Gunduz said Aujun's products were now sold in over 70 countries around the world and it had ambitious plans to grow this figure further.

"Aujan Industries is firmly established as a home-grown FMCG powerhouse, and is positioned to pass the one billion dollar annual sales mark for the first time in the long and distinguished history of the company," he added.

On his future plans, Gunduz said Aujan will continue to expand into new markets in 2012, with Indonesia and Thailand both expected to be added in the coming months.

The company is also focused on expanding its presence in other markets through its recently announced partnership with The Coca-Cola Company, he added.

Key to the growth of Aujan Industries in the past year was its continued strong performance in core and emerging markets, in addition to an ambitious expansion strategy.  In 2011, the company shipped its products to the following six new markets for the first time: Austria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Italy, Slovenia and South Sudan.

In response to increasing demand, Aujan Industries has continued to invest heavily in its production and distribution capacity. The company will expand capacity at its three existing facilities and will open two new factories in the next five years.
In December last year, Aujan had announced a binding agreement for The Coca-Cola Company to acquire approximately half of the equity in Aujan’s existing beverage business, representing the largest-ever investment by a multinational firm in the Middle East’s fast moving consumer goods sector.

"Once closed, this $980 million transaction will provide Saudi-based Aujan a platform to accelerate the international growth of the Aujan brands, including Rani and Barbican, while enhancing the regional outlook for licensed brand Vimto," he added.-TradeArabia News Service

Tags: Rani | Saudi | Sales | Coca cola | beverages | Vimto | soft drink |

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