MAF Ventures and Daud Arabian in Gourmet Gulf JV

First entry into Middle East F&B market for Majid Al Futtaim Ventures

Hummingbird Bakery is one of the brands Gourmet Gulf handles.
Hummingbird Bakery is one of the brands Gourmet Gulf handles.

Daud Arabian and Majid Al Futtaim Ventures have signed a joint venture agreement covering mutual investments in Gourmet Gulf Company, a food and beverage restaurant company in the Middle East.

Gourmet Gulf has been in the region for more than seven years, and holds the exclusive development and franchise rights in a number of Middle East markets for brands such as California Pizza Kitchen, Morelli’s Gelato, YO! Sushi and Hummingbird Bakery. It operates 25 F&B outlets across the region.

Operating from its headquarters in Dubai, Gourmet Gulf is scheduled to open over 10 restaurants in the next six months.

Gourmet Gulf CEO Sami Daud said: "Our objective is to have well over 100 outlets in operation by 2020, a goal that we are well on our way to achieving. In addition to the opening of new outlets of our existing franchise brands, we are also in the final stages of signing a number of new concepts for the region which will launch very early next year."

He added: The Middle East and surrounding markets are experiencing some of the fastest growth in the world, particularly in the food industry. This partnership enables Gourmet Gulf to scale our operations and propel our rate of expansion in a dynamic, but considered manner to maintain our leading position in the F&B franchising sector."

The joint venture will bring Daud Arabian’s and Majid Al Futtaim Ventures’ experience across the MENA region to Gourmet Gulf, consolidating its considerable depth of experience in the regional food industry.

Majid Al Futtaim Ventures CEO Ahmed Galal Ismail said: "This is a landmark partnership as our first investment in the Middle East F&B sector. Gourmet Gulf is a very well respected operator with an exceptional portfolio of brands and a solid track record in the region. Combining this with our retail expertise makes for a compelling alliance, and we are confident of mutual success."

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