Dr. Emad Rizkalla, Chief Operating Officer of New Country Healthcare (NCH), and Dr. Ashraf Sabry, Chief Commercial and Marketing Officer of New Country Healthcare, discuss New Country Healthcare’s approach on technology and innovation for growth and expansion.
What makes New Country Healthcare a leading distributor in the UAE and the Middle East?
Rizkalla: New Country Healthcare was established in1978 as ‘Country Pharmacy,’ which is still present in Bur Dubai. In 1989, New Country Healthcare started importing products and distributing them in the market. We cover a wide range of categories such as pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, healthy food, and personal care products. For a long time, New Country Healthcare has worked towards improving the quality of its products, and the services provided to its consumers. What makes us stand out in this competitive market is the fact that our products and services are focused on ensuring that people consume good quality food, in order to have enough vitamins and minerals through healthy supplements.
Moreover, we provide our customers with proper treatment during times of illness through our pharmaceutical products sold throughout the country. Furthermore, we are always willing to develop our team with up-to-date information, skills, and knowledge. Lastly, we have partnered with international distributors from different parts of the world to provide the community with one of the most innovative and beneficial products available in the world.
What strategies has the company employed to stand out in this competitive market?
Rizkalla: Our employees are always up-to-date and are constantly developing themselves to become competitive individuals that will drive the growth of the pharmaceutical industry. We choose our employees based on the highest standards set to compete and thrive in this rapidly developing market. All of our employees belong to the medical background and we have integrated all the departments of the company to ensure an effective and well-coordinated workforce.
How did you tackle the challenges of the pandemic?
Sabry: Of course the challenge of the pandemic was huge. We were dealing with something that did not happen before. So we had to set our priorities right from the beginning. Our priorities included serving our customers in the best way possible and ensuring the well-being of our team, i.e. the NCH family. Our aim was to ensure that we make our products available in all the pharmacies, supermarkets, and all the leading selling platforms, to serve the customers in the right way during those critical times. Even in terms of shipments, it was very challenging to import our products and to have them delivered to the customers because of the supply chain-related issues. We imported some of our products via air transport, so the cost was a little higher, but again, our objective was to serve our customers with vitamins and products that would boost their immunity.
NCH has always focused on innovation and quality. How has the company maintained high standards over the years?
Sabry: Innovation! We believe in staying up-to-date with the latest trends, staying ahead of our competition, and being willing to adapt to change almost immediately. Our warehouses are some of the best in the country and include state-of-the-art and automated facilities. We have unique technology and systems to make sure that the orders we receive are executed and delivered to our customers in a short period of time and in a hassle-free manner. Our advanced facilities and services are not restricted to only the UAE market, we have partners in various other GCC countries where we have adopted the same strategy to ensure top-notch products and services to our customers.
Rizkalla: In terms of innovative products, we have one of the most advanced and latest products in the world. Our partners have always been keen on supplying us with the most advanced products which are integrated and used in our innovative facilities within our premises here. We have adopted fully automated operations that facilitate our work and business, and improve the services provided by us to our customers.
How did NCH ensure that medical products were made available for people despite the supply chain-related challenges?
Rizkalla: During the pandemic, one of the greatest challenges we faced was caused due to the global shortage of medicines and food supplements despite the high demand persisting worldwide. The challenge was to figure out how we could arrange and provide products to our customers, and make it available for the local market. Working in line with H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid’s vision to have everything available in the country during the pandemic, we worked tirelessly to secure enough stock and provide the local market with a sufficient amount of immunity products. We were one of the few companies that were successful in tackling the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic and ensured that none of our products were out of stock despite the supply chain-related challenges.
Sabry: Our leader said, “Don’t worry,” and that is exactly what we did. By investing heavily in online business platforms, we managed to secure a lot of orders for products related to immunity boosting. The fact that we did not give up and continued to serve our customers is one of our key success factors and will remain as one of our greatest achievements during the pandemic.
We have partnered with International Distributors from Different parts of the World to provide the community with one of the most innovative and beneficial products available in the world.
What facilities does NCH have in Jafza?
Rizkalla: Jafza is vital to New Country Healthcare as we import all our products through Jafza. We deal with Jafza very often and use their facilities extensively as it is a very important part of our workflow and our day-to-day tasks. A few of our partners work in Jafza, thus enhancing its importance for our business.
How has Jafza contributed to the company’s success?
Sabry: What happened last year and continued this year has made us realize that it is necessary to be prompt in shipments, and to make sure that the products are delivered to customers in good condition and on-time. From clearing the goods, to dealing with customs, to delivering the product as soon as possible, Jafza’s state-of-the-art and unique facilities have played a massive role in making this possible. The pandemic proved in many ways that various organizations including New Country Healthcare relied on and benefited greatly from Jafza’s effectiveness in bringing the products out of the ports and to the doorsteps of our customers.