Brunei Halal UK base will train Bruneians: report

A file picture of Wasabi-flavoured crisps labelled with the Brunei Halal brand logo. Picture: BT file

Monday, May 28, 2012

THE Brunei Halal Brand's base in Birmingham will help support the company's financial and human resource development objectives aside from being merely a sales and distribution warehouse for the United Kingdom and Europe.

In the Oxford Business Group's (OBG) 2011 country report on Brunei, chief executive officer of Brunei Wafirah UK Dr Muhammad Nazir OBE said the brand's operation base in UK will help in the creation of professionals in the field both for the Bruneian and European market.

Dr Muhammad expressed confidence that a focus on the right business models will create opportunities for young Bruneians to obtain commercial experience and eventually take leadership positions in the Brunei Halal Brand "both in the Sultanate and internationally".

In November 2011, Brunei Wafirah Holdings Sdn Bhd, owner of the brand, announced its decision to set-up a base at Saltley Business Park, Birmingham, signing a five-year lease contract for a 25,000-sq foot unit.

Dr Mohammad, who was appointed as CEO of Brunei Wafirah UK Ltd in August 2011, was brought onboard to lead the subsidiary of Brunei Wafirah Holdings.

The CEO, in his viewpoint in the OBG report, said that the UK operations will also provide a commercial intelligence base to guide the further development of its business as well as greater control and management of the supply chain.

"While European markets continued to feel the effects of the global economic slowdown, the market for halal meat in the UK has seen significant growth. By focusing on the right business models, we are confident of the medium and long-term potential to generate significant profits," he said.

From there, Bruneians will be able to develop local halal ventures that can eventually be linked to global food markets, he added.

Noel Shield, chief executive officer of Brunei Wafirah Holdings, previously said that the facilities will be ready this year and will play "an instrumental part" for distributing goods all over the UK.

"Birmingham is a hub for the Muslim community (there) and currently, and we've started looking for staff for the UK office," Shield told The Brunei Times previously.

Brunei Halal's dry food product range includes biscuits, snacks and crisps, confectionary goods and noodles.

Brunei Wafirah Holdings opened its doors to candidates interested to be part of the brand's global expansion programme in June 2011. The Brunei Times


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