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Jeddah - Yasmine El Tohamy - JEDDAH: Gulf Marketing Group (GMG), a Dubai-based, family-owned holding company, is increasing its investments in Saudi Arabia by opening a brand new 23,000 square meter warehouse facility in Riyadh to serve its growing customer base in the Kingdom.
The new warehouse will serve the GMG Sports division of the group, which caters to Saudi consumers’ growing demand for sports apparel. It is known in the Kingdom for the brand Sun & Sand Sports.
Mohammad A. Baker, deputy chairman and CEO of GMG, told Arab News Saudi Arabia is of great importance to the company, highlighting that it has been operating in the Kingdom for over a decade.
“We are a company founded in Dubai, and we have been operating in Saudi Arabia for over 10 years now. Saudi is a critical market for us, and we believe that, as a Gulf Cooperation Council nation company, there is a lot we need to contribute in terms of sports in the Kingdom.
“There has been amazing work that Saudi Arabia has been doing in terms of promoting sports … recently with the Dakar initiative — the first time in the region — there’s a lot of things happening with Saudi Arabia,” he added.
He explained that the company’s marketing strategy is quite simple: To serve the consumer and to make sports a part of their daily routine.
“We take in what the government wants and what is our expertise and then serve the consumer; find a way to connect to the consumer to encourage them to make sports a daily habit,” he said. “Sports should not be once in a blue moon, or a once-a-month initiative; it should be a daily habit. That’s my marketing strategy.”
GMG has built a very strong brand in the Kingdom through Sun & Sand Sports. Instead of viewing other companies as competitors, GMG focuses on its mission: To promote sports.
“We do not look at our competition actually, we look at how can we serve the consumer. Whatever the consumer is demanding, we should be in a position to provide that. Especially when it comes to retail and within the physical brick and mortar stores,” he said.
“We are no longer just a retailer that displays footwear and apparel in a store and gives it to the consumer. That is not what we do, we want to provide an experience for the consumer, and I think we were one of the first companies to do such a thing in Saudi Arabia.”
Pointing to the effects of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic on the company last year, Baker applauded the Kingdom’s quick efforts to contain the spread of the virus.
“It was very unfortunate that humanity had to go through such a pandemic, but I think with the efforts that the government in Saudi Arabia has been doing to fight COVID-19, it has been remarkable … with the countless efforts that the General Sports Authority has also been focusing on in sports, I think we are in a very healthy position,” he said.
“The future is quite bright, and we are sure we are going to come out of this stronger than ever, and with the 2030 plans of the (Saudi) leadership, we believe that the Kingdom should be one of the world’s top economies.”
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