Aline Kamakian, CEO, Mayrig Aline Kamakian, CEO, Mayrig

10. Aline Kamakian, CEO, Mayrig

Along with her cousin Serge Maacaron, Kamakian opened the first Mayrig restaurant in Beirut, Lebanon in June 2003. The traditional Armenian restaurant aimed to introduce diners to the homely, healthy recipes and forgotten flavours of ancient Armenia. Since then, Kamakian has ventured into new concepts in the Lebanese market, with the launch of M Catering in 2004, Batchig in 2013, and Made by Mayrig in 2014. She also opened a branch of Mayrig in Jeddah in 2011, another in Dubai in 2013, and one more in Riyadh in May of this year. In each Mayrig franchise, every small detail aims to convey the charm, authentic atmosphere, and hospitable spirit of the original Mayrig outlet in Beirut. Kamakian personally strives to ensure that the high quality of food and service is not compromised as she shares her traditional recipes in each of the various franchises. It was, in part, this dedication and attention to detail that was recognised when, in December of last year, Kamakian was voted Women Entrepreneur of the Year 2014 in the Brilliant Lebanese Awards, organised by BLC Bank.

Kamakian already has plans in the pipeline for further outlets in the Middle East. She expects to open Mayrigs in Abu Dhabi and Qatar, as well as a Batchig branch in Kuwait, and both a Mayrig and a Batchig restaurant in Egypt. Expansion into Europe is also a top priority for 2016, which should put her goal of spreading Armenian culture and cuisine worldwide well within her grasp.

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