Working in the Middle East for over a century, the Jashanmal Group delivers exceptional products, on-time and to a diverse customer base – completely revolutionising the retail trade business in the process
The Jashanmal Group is a dynamic and diversified group, renowned as a leader in retail across the GCC. The family-owned conglomerate has been serving the Middle East for over 100 years, with a key focus on providing exceptional customer service and delivering high-quality products. Its Jashanmal stores are in premium shopping destinations across the GCC, including Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman and the UAE, all offering unmatched shopping experience and garnering ongoing loyalty from its diverse customer base.
Tony Jashanmal, Group President, explains how the Jashanmal Group built and maintains its position as a retail trailblazer.
You were present in the UAE even before the start of Jafza. How has Jafza made life easier for Jashanmal?
Jafza has provided highly digitised process-based systems and environments for all our import/export needs. It’s made an enormous contribution to our scalability in the region.
The free zone is near to the Jebel Ali Port, serving as a vital gateway for international trade and connecting the region with major markets in Europe, Asia and Africa. The world-class infrastructure and facilities, state-of-the-art container terminals, the free trade zone and a logistics centre – it has all helped us consolidate our presence in the existing markets, while also opening new avenues for us to discover.
Overall, the conducive ecosystem for retail business at Jafza makes it an attractive destination for companies looking to expand their presence in the MENA region.
What operational and logistics facilities do your company have in the UAE and Jafza?
At Jashanmal, we have re-engineered the concept of the supply chain. We started investing to facilitate growth, optimise operations with a focus on people and assets and to fine-tune efficiencies in our business operations. The overall strategy was to introduce primary and regional order fulfilment distribution centres and to modernise warehouses with new storage concepts. We also introduced a Warehouse Management System for enhancing inventory management, improving order fulfilment, and reducing order cycle time with better inventory visibility.
Jafza is our central distribution centre, with 80% of the total volume inbound here. In total, we have around 520,000 ft2 of warehouse space across MENA.
Our phenomenal growth is due to our strategy of acquiring new brands. We increased our inbound cargo from 900 containers in 2018 to over 2,500 in 2022, fulfilling customer orders to the local market and to the upper Gulf region, including countries like Kuwait and Bahrain.
The Jashanmal Group has a wide range of products, catering to various market segments in various locations. Our retail arm, Jashanmal National Company, operates a network of department stores and speciality shops, offering a vast array of consumer goods, ranging from luxury fashion, fragrance and cosmetics, to home appliances, luggage and homeware.
Could you elaborate on your strategies to manage seasonal spikes in demand?
We use robust planning and ordering systems. A clear identification and categorisation of seasonal stock helps us keep pace with the rising demands. We utilise modelling and forecasting methods to predict demand patterns. After that, we adjust our resources and services, and support material-planning based on the above findings.
All the warehouses we operate in have dock levellers, Warehouse Management Systems (WMS) to manage operations and CCTV’s for security. We also have separate loading areas for export and import handling and utilise state-of-the-art equipment for loading and unloading our merchandise from containers, giving us a shorter turnaround time.
How has your company incorporated digital tools in improving its business model?
We have embraced technology wholeheartedly at Jashanmal. We enthusiastically use digital and social channels as a means of keeping in close contact with our customers. Apart from that, the WMS helps ensure the accuracy and availability of stock and services.
What measures have you taken to maintain a strong customer base in the era of e-commerce?
We see e-commerce as critical to the trading and retail business and have invested valuable time and resources in e-commerce as a way of staying ahead of our competition. We have seven different e-commerce portals, all offering our customers a positive retail experience as they purchase our products from the comfort of their homes.
We have a robust Customer Relationship Management system for our large and growing database and to measure engagement with our customers. Digital and social media channels, such as Facebook, Instagram, TikTok and others, help us stay relevant for existing customers, and to attract new ones. Meanwhile, the conventional markers of on-time delivery and excellent customer service remain the most helpful tools in keeping our customers delighted with our products and services.