Addis International Catering Enters Market


Company launches with 25 million dollars of capital in 2008 with a production capacity of 15,000 meals a day




Addis International Catering(AIC), a subsidiary company of the MIDROC Group, owned by Mohammed Al-Amoudi (Sheik), began giving domestic catering services three weeks ago, after securing a license for the service in July 2014.

The company was established in 2008 with a capital of 25 million dollars to provide catering services for international airways. The company initially secured a business license for international food manufacturing and aircraft cleaning services, as well as a bonded warehouse license. Addis Catering commenced operation in the same year on a 6,000sqm plot located adjacent to Bole International Airport, with a capacity of producing 15,000 meals per day.

“After we realised our capacity was above and beyond the services we were providing, we began the process of acquiring a domestic catering license, which took us almost a year to get,” says Thomas Jamtander, chief operation officer (COO) of AIC.

The company has added catering services for the local market, a laundry service, laboratory tests and training programs in personal hygiene and provides professional training. The laboratory provides tests for items such as bottled water, ice cubes, meals, raw materials and hand surfaces.

After securing the license, the company was in the process of preparing to start domestic services, which it finally began three weeks ago, according to Makida Yohannes, general manager of sales and customer service of AIC.

Currently, the Company provides catering and cleaning services to eight airways including Emirates, Egypt Air, Qatar Airways, Kenya Airways, Saudi Arabian Airlines, Yemen Airways, Turkish Airlines and Fly Dubai, with the average capacity of serving 1,000 meals on a daily basis. The new license enables Addis Catering to serve the services for embassies, NGOs, private companies and events.

Since the end of November, the AIC has provided catering services for seven companies. This includes the meeting at the European Union (EU), Swedish Embassy, International Community School of Addis Abeba and Sandford International School. Addis Catering will start serving lunch and snacks at Sandford in January 2015.

“In addition to catering for events, we are on the way to opening a coffee chain in Addis Abeba, and we have already identified its location, to be open starting early new year in Bole area, along the African Avenue,” says Jamtander.

The new coffee shop will sell bakery and pastry products, along with beverages, according to Makida.

AIC has nine refrigerated high loaders and two ramp cars to transport prepared foods to aircraft and to venues where its catering services are needed as well. It operates with 170 workers, of which 10 are from Sweden, the Philippines, India and Sri Lanka. It has added 15 new staff members for its new local service, and is in the process of hiring additional staff, according to Jamtander.

AIC mainly imports its ingredients from Europe, including Italy and Belgium and South Africa. The ingredients it imports are beef, fish and chicken. The company stated two main reasons for the import: customer preference and a lack of consistent supply from the local market.

“We want to source all of our inputs locally, but we cannot get reliable suppliers from the local market. This creates a problem as we have a contract with the airways which lasts for two to three years,” said Jamtander.

The company charges a minimum cost of 7.5 dollars per meal and a maximum cost of 30 dollars per meal for the airways, and 200 Br to 800 Br per meal for local catering. “Our prices are a little bit higher compared to other catering companies, but it is because we offer higher quality based on our customer’s preferences,” Makida claims.

Recently, the had a joint venture agreement with Chinese company Vantage Consultants, for the establishment of Addvantage Training Services, which provides training for food hygiene, safety and HACCP implementation. It has trained professionals from Sheraton Addis, Hilton Addis, Radisson Blu and Capital Hotel and Spa.



By FASIKA TADESSE
FORTUNE STAFF WRITER

Published on December 21, 2014 [ Vol 15 ,No 764]


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