Five minutes with Andre Mikaeli, Pozzolan
Andre Mikaeili, business development manager and partner at Pozzolan, discusses his company’s strategy to increase its focus on the UAE and Qatar markets
How would you assess the Middle East’s concrete peripheral market at present?
There is huge potential, although the news from Saudi Arabia in the last few months has not been promising. However, we hope to see all the milestones, set for the region’s growth in the coming five years, being realised with the help of a smooth political and business climate. We are happy to be one of the region’s key players for concrete accessories, and are well braced to survive the blows in this volatile market.
How has business been for pozzolan in the Middle East during the past year?
We had a hard time with our Saudi clients, since more than 78% of our sales were concentrated in the kingdom. Last year, we could only secure 17% sales, which was a huge plunge. This motivated us to change our strategy and put the spotlight on the UAE and Qatar. Although there is massive competition in the UAE market, we have been successful in increasing our sales of certain [proprietary] products. Despite regional challenges, we have set a target to double our product sales in 2017.
How is Pozzolan planning to achieve this ambitious target?
Pozzolan received positive feedback following its attendance at The Big 5 2016. This year, we have mainly been focussing on our business-to-business (B2B) approach. We have also been working to monitor the changes in the market cautiously. We are [already looking forward to] The Big 5 2017.
In which ME markets are pozzolan’s products currently in highest demand?
At present, Pozzolan’s strongest regional markets are the UAE, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia, followed by Oman.