Our Correspondent/ Emirates Business
Australian cafe chain, ‘The Coffee Club’ entered the UAE market in the beginning of 2015 with its first branch at Abu Dhabi’s Yas Mall and later expanding to Dubai in March 2015. Over the past one year, the coffee chain has ventured into different locations in the UAE.
“The first year has been a whirlwind. The UAE market has been The Coffee Club’s first foray into the MENA region and it has been a journey of many ups and downs — we realised that we cannot copy the system that has worked for us in say Australia or Thailand. We had to formulate a model that worked for the UAE, for instance, our customers here were keen on plated desserts and so we introduced that on the menu,” said Michael Chick, General Manager at Liwa Minor Food and Beverages LLC.
Liwa Minor Food and Beverages, the joint venture company of local operator Al Nasser Holdings and Thai publicly listed company Minor Food Group brought The Coffee Club to the UAE as its first food brand.
Since its inception in 1989, The Coffee Club has become Australia’s largest home-grown café group with more than 360 cafés throughout 9 countries including Thailand, Egypt and China. The cafe’s mission and philosophy is simple, at The Coffee Club we want to provide good food, great service and excellent coffee; a welcoming relaxed meeting place
as well as enriching contemporary lifestyles. The Coffee Club, which employs more than 6,000 staff, is well known for its all day breakfast and excellent coffee served in a relaxing and comfortable setting.
“The climate in the UAE is searing for the majority of the year and this was reflected in our introduction of shaken iced teas and sparkling frappes to the menu. We have also recently revamped our menu following the feedback we’ve received from our customer base. For example, our Emirati customers wanted a French toast option on the menu and across the board Nutella was the firm favourite for desserts,” he added.
The 2016 outlook for The Coffee Club looks promising with 10 more cafes set to open up across the UAE. “Our expansion ambitions are also reflective of the double digit comparative growth we have achieved in the 1st quarter of 2016,” said Chick.
“We believe our success is due to our firm emphasis on customer satisfaction. At The Coffee Club we pride ourselves in offering good food, great service and excellent coffee setting us apart from the rest.”
The Coffee Club is owned by Minor DKL Food Group; a leading Australian retail food brand franchisor, which has formed a firm feet in the UAE.
Minor DKL Food Group is also the owner of Veneziano Coffee Roasters, a leading speciality coffee roasting house supplying wholesale and retail customers throughout Australia from roasting facilities in Melbourne and Brisbane.