Second Cup brews up ambitious regional plans

Second Cup is the latest international coffee retailer to announce ambitious plans for the Gulf.

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By  David Ingham Published  August 4, 2004

Canada's Second Cup is the latest major coffee retailer to announce big plans for the Gulf. The company has just expanded its number of outlets in Dubai to five and is looking at further openings in the UAE and elsewhere in the Gulf. The first regional Second Cup branch opened in March 2003 on Sheikh Zayed Road and the company’s master franchisee in the Middle East, Bin Hendi Enterprises, aims to growth the chain further. “Given the tremendous response to the first Second Cup cafe on Sheikh Zayed Road, as well as the rising popularity of the brand, we are always looking for locations to make our brand more accessible,” says Mohi-din Binhendi, president, Bin Hendi Enterprises. “This move is in line with the company’s ambitious growth strategy to capture a larger market share of the rapidly increasing specialty coffee consumer segment.” The new Bur Dubai outlet offers the usual range of regular and designer coffees as well as English style breakfasts and panini sandwiches. Plans are in the works to open Second Cup outlets at Sharjah City Center and Diera City Centre. The company also intends to open cafes in the Abu Dhabi and Oman markets during the coming months, and steadily expand in other areas of the Middle East, including Saudi Arabia and Qatar. “We are now fully geared to expand our operations based on solid foundations and are eagerly anticipating sharing our unique coffee culture with customers in new markets throughout the Middle East,” says Binhendi. Just about every major international coffee chain has earmarked the Gulf region for big growth. Costa, which claims to be the UK’s largest coffee retailer, has 40 outlets in seven countries in the Middle East and plans to open in another four countries by the end of 2004. The company is also looking at opportunities in Pakistan and intends to open a roastery in India in 2005. Starbucks, the biggest coffee chain of all, is also spreading across the region, in partnership with its regional partner, Alshaya Group. It now has around 100 outlets across the Arab region and aims to bolster that to 200 by the end of next year.

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