9 January 2015, Philippine Daily Inquirer
Al Ahli Holding Group to do business in PH
Al Ahli Holding Group (AAHG), a diversified conglomerate based in the United Arab Emirates, has jumpstarted plans to establish significant presence in the Philippines by signing franchising agreements with local firms and starting talks with the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA).
Mohammed Khammas, chief executive officer of AAHG, said in a briefing Thursday that his company was highly bullish on the prospects of its businesses in the Philippines.
The group’s proposed long-term projects in the Philippines are expected to require hundreds of millions of dollars in investments.
AAHG on Thursday signed an agreement to bring six local franchises—namely, Binalot, Jay-J’s, Fruitas, Mochicreme, Zagu, Fiftea—to Dubai under a single roof to be called Little Manila. The plan was to open the first outlet of Little Manila in Dubai by the end of 2015, to be followed by 20 more branches over the next two years across the Middle East and the rest of the world.
The move was meant to take “the best of Philippine brands to various international markets over the next few years.”
AAHG also signed a memorandum of understanding with the BCDA for a “strategic alliance” covering the development of some of the agency’s assets within the Clark Green City in Pampanga and in Metro Manila.
BCDA president and CEO Arnel Paciano D. Casanova said the kind of projects and innovations that AAHG would be bringing to BCDA were expected to put the Philippines on the global and regional map.
“What we’ve signed is an MOU in preparation for the final memorandum of agreement. This may cover projects to be located in Clark Green City as there is currently a big interest to develop the area. We are also looking at opportunities for BCDA properties in Metro Manila,” Casanova added.
Khammas said that as for his company’s partnership with BCDA, it was looking primarily at three main sectors such as tourism; family entertainment; and meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE). The group is primarily looking at bringing in the country specific events that are unique not only to the Philippines but also to the region