Leading Pakistani export firm, Iftekhar Ahmed & Co (IAC) established in 1960 has announced its investment in retail chains as a step into the retail market.
According to Waheed Ahmed, Iftekhar Ahmed & Company’s Director Marketing, the company has decided to use its 59 year supply chain expertise in delivering fresh fruits, vegetables and fruits pulp to domestic and global markets, and expand its business by opening fresh-produce retail chains to aid the local market and to meet the changing lifestyle requirements of the people of Pakistan.
The company has established a new brand called “Go 4 Fresh”, which will be available both in domestic and foreign markets.
Go 4 Fresh is the chain of retail stores that will expand to other cities after Karachi, and then to the Middle East and the UK.
The company is also planning to export the Go 4 Fresh brand for fresh and value-added products to an additional 30 countries in the second phase.
According to Waheed Ahmed, IAC’s total investment in Pakistan has totaled $21 million in the last 5 years. IAC is one of the largest companies in the country with 9 plants dedicated to fresh mango, citrus, and potato processing, along with pack houses, value-added products, processing of aseptic mango, apple, guava, tomato, and other fruit pulp and concentrates.
He said, “The company believes in giving back and in re-investing its earnings in the society to create greater employment.
This is the right time to invest in Pakistan as the country needs revenue and employment to get out of its economic downward spiral”. The total daily capacity of the company’s processing plants for mango, guava, and peach is 1240 tons.
However, for apple juice concentrate and tomato paste, the capacity is 600 tons.
The company also has the country’s largest state-of-the-art storage facility to store fresh produce and value-added products. The company’s total annual turnover is more than Rs. 3500 million for fresh produce and value-added products. Major multinational juice manufacturing companies are among the primary buyers of the company’s products.
The first store of IAC’s subsidiary brand has been established in DHA, Karachi and will be inaugurated on Saturday, 21st December. More than 8 to 10 stores will be established in Karachi including complete outlets and dedicated ice cream and juice outlets.
IAC will further invest Rs. 250 million to expend its countrywide retail network in the next 4 years while a wide range of food products will be launched under this brand which will also export to IAC’s established foreign markets spread over 30 countries.
The new brand ‘Go 4 Fresh’ will be a new concept in the retail sector and will benefit both consumers and farmers in Pakistan. Local and imported fruits include energy-rich and refreshing smoothies, fresh milk, synthetic ingredient-free ice cream, fresh fruit juices, dried fruits, and fruits and vegetables.