The first time I went to the Gulf region was in 1992. It was my first job straight out of university, where I’d studied Business Studies. The picture you can see below is of me, somewhere in Dubai talking to a team of merchandisers about how they can best get more sales for Terry’s Chocolate Oranges.
So at the time, my first job was for Kraft Foods International or Kraft Jacobs Suchard, which was as a marketing manager for the Middle East division. It was a great job for me; I was straight out of university and spending two weeks every month in the Middle East. I’d be based in London and then fly out on a Friday night to Dubai and then travel across the region. I had a free reign on how I could develop sales for the range of Terry’s and Suchard products.
It was a really good learning experience for me because it allowed me to work with different distributors, look at marketing campaigns, look at the end sale and how that resulted through the different retailers out there.
The reason I’m posting this today is that I’m going back to the region; I think it might have changed just a little bit since I was last there in 1994. I’ve been about 20 times before, but it was all in that period, 1992 to 1994. I think it’s changed a lot, well I know it’s changed a lot, but I’m looking forward to going.
The reason that we’re going is that the Push is establishing a business, which will be known as Push MENA (Middle East and North Africa). It is being established with our very first Push employee, Anisha Patel. So we are coming into the region, we have big plans and are backing it with big investment. We are really excited about taking our knowledge of Google, Facebook and Bing (Microsoft) advertising into this market.
We’re in a position where our expertise in Europe should really help launch into the MENA region. We will be providing the same quality of service that we provide for our European customers directly in the Middle East.
Wish us luck…