Aramex expands Gulf operations

JORDAN-BASED logistics firm Aramex International last week signed an agreement with Bahrain Financial Harbour (BFH) as part of its wider plans to expand its operations throughout the Gulf.

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By  Massoud A. Derhally Published  July 17, 2005

Massoud A. Derhally JORDAN-BASED logistics firm Aramex International last week signed an agreement with Bahrain Financial Harbour (BFH) as part of its wider plans to expand its operations throughout the Gulf. The Amman-based company, which is set to be listed on the Dubai stock exchange later this month, plans to cater to the express and logistics needs of the 350 financial and insurance institutions operating in the US$1.3 billion BFH development. The deal is part of Aramex’s expansion plans in Bahrain and reflects the growth of the company’s operations in the kingdom, Fadi Ghandour, the company’s chief executive, told Arabian Business. “Business is booming in Bahrain and the Financial Harbour is an area that we need to be in to serve the community that is going to be there,” explained Ghandour, adding that the company has plans to do the same when the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) is up and running. “We follow the client, we follow the activity,” he added. Aramex last year registered double-digit growth in its express, cargo and domestic business in Bahrain. As a result, the firm’s expansion strategy includes four new branches to be located in strategic locations across the kingdom. Furthermore, the company is set to upgrade its office in the diplomatic area, a central location for all businesses, embassies, banks and investment companies. “The Harbour is set to become the centre of financial excellence in the Middle East once it becomes operational by the end of next year and we look forward to working within this financial nerve centre,” said Samer Marei, Bahrain country manager for Aramex, elaborating on the firm’s expansion plans. “This agreement reflects the Harbour’s confidence in Aramex. It is a big leap forward for us and will strengthen our position as the leading one-stop transportation solutions provider in the region,” he added. Envisaged as a complete financial city for the global economic sector, the BFH will combine business, leisure and residential components and is being developed on a prime waterfront site. It will house over 350 financial institutions, hotels, trade offices and is expected to be partially operational by the end of 2006. Bahrain hopes that the complex will catapult it into the league of top global economic centres such as London, Hong Kong, Singapore and Tokyo. Meanwhile, the transportation solutions provider is also in the process of opening a warehouse in Bahrain’s Al Hid Industrial Area in order to expand its logistics and operational facilities within the region. Seperately, Aramex is now concentrating on the Dubai financial market before it explores any possibilities of listing on the DIFC, added Ghandour.

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