COVID-19 Impact: New Opportunities Emerging in the FMCG and Hospitality Sectors

COVID-19 Impact: New Opportunities Emerging in the FMCG and Hospitality Sectors

Saleh Boxwala, the Managing Director of Rashid Printers & Stationers LLC, speaks to Print Pack MEA about the challenges due to COVID-19 and the overall changes they have made for business continuity 

During this COVID-19 crisis, what measures have you undertaken to continue your own business without disruption?
We have taken all kinds of actions to keep our routine business operation stable and alive so that our customers won’t be affected in any way. Back up’s in all the crucial areas which will have a direct impact from COVID-19 is being continuously monitored and action plans were created to tackle the issue on an immediate basis so that our business will not be disrupted.

What measures and initiatives have been taken to provide uninterrupted service to customers?  
We work with shift rotation basis with only 30% of manpower in each shifts in the view of safety of our employees and social distancing so that our delivery timeline to the customer, Downtime in production & Business will not be affected in any other way.

Which top industry verticals and markets have you seen the maximum traction? How has COVID-19 impacted business with existing customers in those verticals and markets?
COVID-19 has definitely affected all verticals of businesses across the world. In UAE, publishing, advertising, PR activities, promotional activities are the worst impacted causing a great decline in the business for the printing industry. Businesses that are directly related to the end customers are expected to survive this crisis with less negative impact as end customer demands helps business to sustain such as FMCG, Pharmaceutical, and banking sectors.

Have you put in place any contingency plans if this crisis persists or gets escalated?
Our business contingency plans includes back up in finance, raw material and employees to ensure business is not impacted by any of the backup factors, on the other side, we are planning to concentrate more on FMCG & manufacturing sectors to minimize all kind of crisis impact in future. On the other side we are working on “Reducing the unreasonable Credit limit period” to all our customers to minimize the business impact due to COVID-19.

What sort of business and financial impact do you expect for your business as a result of COVID-19?
Already COVID–19 has affected most of the businesses financially at a global level resulting in cash flow issues.  It’s difficult to predict the Business and Financial Impact at the moment as the crisis is not yet over. We have built our business in such a way to withstand all kinds of negative impacts. Having customers from different industries helps us to withstand these issues with minimal damage financially and to the business.

Have you kick-started any initiatives for your employees to better handle this crisis?
Only 30% of manpower is employed in each shift to ensure the safety of our employees. Daily temperature monitoring is done for all the employees and the disinfecting process is carried out twice a day throughout the facility. We are taking all kinds of steps to sustain this crisis so that our employees are not affected in any other way. Employee well-being is one of our top priorities in our business model.

Where do you see new opportunities emerging from – either industry sectors, jobs, markets?
We see some gradual increase in opportunities from FMCG and Hospitality sectors as we are gearing up for “New Normal”. 

Edward Frank

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