Congratulations on the 30th anniversary of the founding of Multiplex International! In your capacity as Founder, MD & CEO, how do you view the transformative journey of your brand over these last three decades?
Multiplex International LLC saw humble beginnings when we established the business in 1993. Since then the last three decades has seen the company grow unprecedentedly with a wide network in the Middle East, more than 60 varied brands across FMCG, retail and the cosmetics sector, and distribution across more than 500 supermarkets and departmental stores. Our company is strong with more than 600 employees today, offices in Dubai, Oman and Qatar and more to be operational in Bahrain and KSA soon. One of the most rewarding aspects of our journey has been the relationships we have built with our employees, customers, and partners. We are embracing digitalisation, exploring new markets, and investing in cutting-edge technologies to stay ahead of the curve.
What are the main challenges you perceive in the FMCG business and how has Multiplex been overcoming the same?
We have encountered numerous challenges so far, but I believe they often define the path to success. As most companies face, we too have gone through the challenges of trying to adapt to constantly changing market conditions, talent acquisition and retention, financial uncertainty, competition, strict regulatory compliance and more. Together, through the determination and hard work of my leadership team and employees, and with their resilience, adaptability and commitment to the company’s core values and mission, we worked to overcome these challenges and emerge with success.
Multiplex is also into the business of colour cosmetics distribution. How has this market grown in the last decade and where do you see it headed in the next five years?
Gauging the potential of the beauty and cosmetics industry in the Middle East, we conceptualised and launched Exquisite Beauty Concept Stores in 2005 and the highly successful Flormar Cosmetic store in 2011. Today the company’s retail arm has flourished to opening 24 Flormar Cosmetics stores and 3 GlamBeaute beauty store across the UAE. The market had faced challenges, particularly with economic uncertainties and the disruption caused by the pandemic. However, it is gradually but steadily showing progress. To cater to a vast audience, I have always emphasised that it is critically important to have the right brands, with the right product mix and pricing.
As a business leader of a prominent Made in UAE brand, what in your view are the merits of starting and running a business in the UAE? How well does the UAE Government promote home-grown businesses?
The UAE boasts a stable and diversified economy, which has proven resilient even during global economic downturns. This stability provides a secure environment for businesses to thrive. The UAE has streamlined its business registration and licensing processes, making it relatively easy to set up and run a business. The country’s commitment to innovation, ease of doing business and global connectivity continues to make it a preferred choice for both local and international businesses.
Please share your expansion plans and the legacy you wish to leave your staff, as well as future entrepreneurs.
We are looking at increasing our footprint in Bahrain and KSA. These markets will require a strategic approach to ensure our brands are distributed across the region. We are also working on adding a number of private label brands to our portfolio along with developing a robust plan for their visibility.
My advice to all the talent around — never stop learning. Embrace every opportunity to learn and grow. Be curious, ask questions, seek mentors, and constantly expand your knowledge and skill sets.
Prathna Adnani talks about how she has added value to the brand’s product portfolio in her role as PR & Marketing Director, Multiplex International LLC.
I am extremely passionate about my role, with extensive hands-on experience supporting high level executives, brand partners and clients associated with the company. I have also been actively involved in developing private label brands based on market requirements and instrumental in launching them in the UAE market.
Brand Xcluzive, with over 130 SKUs involving beauty implements, bath, nail, hair accessories and more is our brainchild where my team and I were involved in the entire production process, right from packaging, ensuring the right product mix and sale channels funnel to effective marketing that improves brand visibility. Xcluzive is today available in most departmental stores, hypermarkets and convenience stores near you.
Revna Adnani elaborates on her role as Head Ecommerce, Multiplex International LLC, and what she hopes to bring to the business.
The future of retail is online, and the ecommerce industry is growing multifold with global digitisation trends helping the sector surge ahead at lightning speed. As a fashion management graduate from the London College of Fashion, and later gaining expertise working on the company’s ecommerce platform with my team, I started Glambeaute.com - a one-stop shop for all beauty needs. I also strategise on the effective sale of our brands through various market-places like Amazon, Noon, Talabat, First Cry, Namshi and more. I believe in being a team player, and in my analytical abilities to understand the digital market space to help our brand to continue to court growth and success in the digital playing field.