Agthia initially made its name in the bottled water sector in the Middle East, and was once best-known for this product and its various innovations in this area.
Today although it retains its market leadership in bottled water, it has significantly expanded its focus to include various other product types, the results of which are clearly driving its extended business growth as evidenced by its most recent financial results.
In its FY2022 financial results announcement, Agthia revealed its net revenue to have increased by 33% year-on-year to AED4.07bn (US$1.11bn); and its net profits overall to have increased by 14% year-on-year to AED247mn (US$67.2mn), a significant achievement given current challenging economic and inflationary circumstances.
“Our Protein and Frozen segment grew by 75% year-on-year to make up 28% of total FY2022 Group revenue, [and] our Snacking segment also grew by 75% year-on-year to make up 23% of revenue,” Agthia CEO Alan Smith stated via a preliminary results announcement to the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX).
“[For Snacking in particular], this was propelled by successful new product launches and strong demand from various new international markets.
“This was all achieved despite industry-wide inflationary pressures across the supply chain, currency devaluation in Egypt, and higher interest rates compared with the prior year.”
Agthia owns and operates several large snacking brands including the Al Foah dates brand which is backed by the Abu Dhabi government, the Al Faysal Bakery and Sweets brand and the Abu Auf healthy snacking brand which is also Egypt’s first to specialise in this area.
In addition to its efforts to grow these relatively newer businesses via both innovation and acquisitions, Agthia has also maintained strict focus on its bottled water business and managed to maintain its market leadership in the past year.
“[Agthia has also successfully] retained our market leading position in UAE bottled water, which includes our Al Ain Water, Al Bayan, Voss, and Alpin brands,” Smith added.
“This is testament to an improved mix [and] the success of key initiatives such as our ‘Happiness Pack’ in raising brand awareness. – the Happiness Pack is an initiative which provides 15% discount codes per purchase for various merchants such as Baskin Robbits, Shein, Air Arabia Holidays and more.”
Agthia’s bottled water ranges include various specialized innovations for particular consumer demands, including Al Ain Zero water with zero sodium content, Al Ain Vitamin D, Al Ain Zero Bromate, Al Ain Bambini targeted at toddlers and more.
The water business made up 24% of total FY2022 group revenue.
Further acquisitions on the horizon
Within the past two years alone, Agthia completed the acquisition of not only healthy snacking leader BMB Group, but also Al Foah and Al Faysal as well as processed meat specialist firms Nabil Foods and Atyab.
The firm has clear intentions to further evolve to grow beyond its current coverage regions, and it appears that more acquisitions are on the way for what is already one of the Middle East’s largest food conglomerates.
“Our strategy to acquire, integrate and grow attractive businesses in value-add categories [has obviously] continued to bear fruit,” said Smith.
“This is just two years into our transformative journey [to become a] leading food and beverage company in the MENAP region and beyond, [and already] we are far bigger, more efficient and have greater capabilities than before.”