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Jan, 04 2012

CZAR OF BIZ WORLD STANDS TALL

With a line of premium brands, BinHendi Group is one of the most diversified, progressive and successful companies in the Middle East. In an exclusive interview with Namita Bhagat, Mohi-Din BinHendi, President, BinHendi Enterprises shares his success tale

With a line of premium brands, BinHendi Group is one of the most diversified, progressive and successful companies in the Middle East. In an exclusive interview with Namita Bhagat, Mohi-Din BinHendi, President, BinHendi Enterprises shares his success tale.

Share the origin and concept of BinHendi Group.

I was always a visionary and looked at solutions quickly as to what the market wants. I look at Dubai as a transformed city. In the early 70s when there were not many malls, mini metros, restaurants etc, I started a bistro restaurant and it was extremely successful. I opened my Pierre Cardin stand-alone boutique in 1972 and from then on there was no turning back.

BinHendi Enterprises has a well diversified portfolio, including sectors such as fashion, watches, jewellery, furniture, restaurants, law and education, petro- chemicals etc. Now, we have a number of good brands coming to this part of the world. I believe family-run business, companies, locals and expatriates are adding value to the retail business in our country.

What motivated you to explore India?

India has a rich culture and I personally love this country because of its people and food. Being in close geographical proximity, it is so enticing to come to India for business. I already have five Hugo Boss retail stand-alone flagship stores here.

The market earlier had real estate issues, but thanks to malls for resolving the reality woes. Earlier, hotels used to be the ultimate solution for opening a brand/franchise clothing business. This is how we started our Hugo Boss business in Delhi. India has evolved middle-class population. There are many buyers for mid market brands too. Therefore, India is a great destination as long as regulations are made easy and accessible for business.

Tell us more about your brands being launched in India?

We are master franchisee for the Canada-based F&B brand Second Cup in the Middle East. We are bringing Second Cup as a master and our own creation Japengo, an F&B brand, to India.

Besides, there are several brands in line for profits, but we can't name them now.

What are your expansion plans for Second Cup and Japengo?

It depends on how the India market is divided. We will initially aggressively look at upscale cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata and Bengaluru. For Japengo, opening five to six locations across India will be easy if we sign up with a strong partner. Collectively, the business is always advantageous if you have 10 outlets instead of one or two. Therefore, it will be around 6-10 outlets for each brand.

How challenging it will be to grow brands in India?

We have enough competition in the home market and can easily survive it in India as well. We already have experience as retailer in the country. We transacted smoothly for our fashion business. When I initiated in India, the reception was extremely professional. We did everything by the books and faced no hurdle.

What is the eligibility criterion for franchisees?

We are working with competent franchise consultants. Without knowing the background, it will be difficult to sign agreements.

How will you train and support franchisees?

Franchisees can be trained in Dubai or we can send them to Canada. Alternatively, we can send our trainers to India. It will be more economical to send the trainer if you want to teach 20 persons.

Keeping the travel costs in mind, it will be advantageous for the franchises and sub-franchises also. Franchises will get support from master franchisees. Their business success means success of master franchisee in India.

What are your plans for other international markets?

We have presence in the MENA region and have signed a couple of franchise agreements in some parts of GCC. With footprint in Egypt, Kuwait, Qatar, Oman and Saudi Arabia, we have vast experience in franchising.

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“Being in close geographical proximity, it is so enticing to come to India for business. We are master franchisee for the Canada-based F&B brand Second Cup in the Middle East. We are bringing Second Cup as a master and our own creation Japengo, an F&B brand, to India.”

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Entrepreneurial journey

Mohi-Din BinHendi, Owner and President of BinHendi Enterprises, is a business administration graduate. BinHendi was appointed Director General of the Department of Civil Aviation (DGCA) in June, 1979. He contributed for the development of Dubai International Airport, Dubai Duty Free Complex, Aviation Club, Aviation College etc. He says: “During my time, Emirates Airlines came into existence. Today, we have successful airlines and airports, which is truly a backbone of the economy of our country. Now, we see the fruits of seeds sown in 1980s.”

BinHendi left the position in 1998 and re-directed his energies towards his business. “After leaving the position of DGCA, I directed to grow my business, which was stalled for 21 years. So, whatever I have today is the hard work that we did in these years. I proudly delivered all that was expected of me without skipping any opportunity. Every good job laid good foundation for the growth of the BinHendi Group,” Mohi-Din BinHendi concludes.

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