LuLu Group launches maiden US venture

Mayor Robert B. Giangeruso, Mayor Michael J. McPartland and Vinai Thummalapally, executive director of Select USA, open LuLu Group’s new food processing and logistics facility in New Jersey, in the presence of the group’s Chairman Yusuffali M.A., CEO Saifee Rupawala, Executive Director Ashraf Ali M.A., COO Saleem V.I. and directors - Mohammed Althaf and Salim M.A.
Updated 04 November 2016
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LuLu Group launches maiden US venture

LuLu Group International, a retail and hospitality group headquartered in Abu Dhabi, has opened its food processing and logistics bases in the United States.
Y International, a wholly owned subsidiary of the group, launched its operation in Lyndhurst, New Jersey.
The world-class export center will purchase, process, re-label and export food, non-food, chilled and frozen products made in the United States.
In the first phase, there are 75 employees and the staff strength is expected to eventually grow to 200 to 250 within a year.
The facility was inaugurated jointly by Mayor Robert B. Giangeruso, Mayor Michael J. McPartland and Vinai Thummalapally, executive director of Select USA, in the presence of Yusuffali M.A., chairman, Saifee Rupawala, CEO, Ashraf Ali M.A., executive director and Mohammed Althaf, director of LuLu Group.
Attendees at the ribbon cutting, including local and foreign officials as well as members of the Indian-American business community from around the country, were thrilled by the impact the company can have throughout the state.
In his remarks, Yusuffali thanked the officials of Select USA, Choose New Jersey and state and county officials for their great support in helping LuLu launch its maiden US venture.
“Our group has been importing US products for a long time to cater to more than 700,000 shoppers who come to our 131 hypermarkets daily," Yusuffali said, highlighting the longstanding relationships between LuLu, and farmers and manufacturers in the country, with a special emphasis on California.
“There has been growing demand for US products throughout our retail chain stores, across the GCC, India and the Far East,” he added.
Speaking to media during the ceremony, Choose New Jersey CEO and President Michele Brown said: "In addition to bringing new jobs to our state, Y International's export center will give New Jersey and the US manufacturers the opportunity to reach new markets in the Middle East and beyond.”
Brown said New Jersey is a perfect fit. "Our state is so diverse; we have populations from so many different countries,” she said.
“We felt they would feel both welcome and at home. The business they will be conducting out of this site is meeting American companies to buy goods and products to then export to their own consumer base,” she added. “We have literally thousands of companies in food in New Jersey."
New Jersey, Brown said, is also home to companies in the apparel and consumer goods industries, which could serve the needs of the company’s hypermarkets.


Careem honors outstanding captains in Riyadh

Updated 12 December 2018
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Careem honors outstanding captains in Riyadh

Careem held the first edition of its Captain’s Excellence Award Ceremony in Riyadh on Saturday. The event, which will be held annually, was the first-of-its-kind in the region and welcomed over 300 top-performing “captains” (Careem drivers) across the Kingdom. 

The captains were awarded based on different criteria such as: Captains with the highest number of trips, highest (customer-given) ratings and longest serving captains. Rewards were also handed out to captain ambassadors, i.e. those with the highest number of referrals and captains that were given a special shoutout on social media by customers for their dedication to their service. Several rewards were handed out along with the grand prize, a brand new car. 

Abdulla Elyas, chief people officer and co-founder of Careem, opened the event with an ode to the captains in attendance, thanking them for their service and commitment in driving impact through meaningful initiatives across the Kingdom. Some of these initiatives included the vaccination campaign in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, which helped more than 100,000 men, women and children across 17 cities get vaccinated in their own homes. Careem also collaborated with Bupa Arabia during Ramadan this year to donate clothes from customers to people in need, where over 180,000 donations were collected. 

Elyas also announced Careem’s partnership with Alwaleed Philanthropies (AP) in delivering the first installment of cars for the empowerment of people with special needs. The foundation, chaired by Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, will provide a number of cars over the course of seven years to men and women of the Society for Physically Disabled Adults (Harakia) after being trained.

“Our captains are the lifeblood of our business and we wanted to celebrate these men and women for helping us achieve our mission of simplifying and improving the lives of people in the Kingdom,” Elyas said. 

“We are proud to have 395,000 ‘captainahs’ (female drivers) and captains registered with us to date in Saudi Arabia, providing over 122 million rides. This ceremony is our small way to thank them for their service and reward them for the hard work they put in every day so that people have a safe way to get around. Without them, we wouldn’t be where we are today” 

Muaaed Al-Saeed, a representative from the Public Transport Authority (PTA), said: “We are excited to have you all; you have overcome each obstacle you were faced with in a short span of time and for that we are extremely proud.” 

He added: “On this occasion, I convey the regards of PTA President Dr. Rumaih Al-Rumaih. The participation of myself and Majed Al-Zahrani, PTA general manager, is proof of our support to all the captains.”