MENA restaurant industry

MENA Restaurant Industry Insights

As one of the fastest-growing foodservice markets in the world, the Middle East has been a region of opportunity for many restaurant chains — both for companies based locally and others from around the world. Changing market conditions, nationalization programs and increasing costs, normalizing margins, and oftentimes weak comps are some of the challenges arising and presenting opportunities to re-assess portfolios, optimize performance, and turnaround or re-invigorate brands.

We’ve worked extensively in the MENA restaurant industry since 2009, and have seen the industry change significantly over the last decade. Here are some highlights of our most popular insights on the food and beverage industry in the region from over that time:

Since Q4 2015, market conditions have been blamed for restaurant performance in the Middle East. In our view, the market is stabilizing and operators should prepare for the new normal. We foresee consolidation being a major theme across the restaurant industry — and that the biggest winner will be the group with the best acquisition strategy. Read More

The foodservice industry is a game of inches. Chain leaders are facing growing pressures to increase revenue, optimize costs, and make their operations more efficient. Read More

With continued urbanization — among other trends — fueling QSR demand in the MENA region, the sector is prime for continued growth, even amidst several challenges for restaurant operators. Read More

Food and Beverage in the Middle East — and GCC countries, in particular — has been an increasingly popular sector for Private Equity Investment. Read More

Rather than working around the Nitaqat system, restaurants in the KSA can benefit from developing a merit-based company culture and work to change the perception of the industry. Read More

Arabic hospitality is not boastful, but worthy of immense pride. Foodservice companies can work to change the regional story of unemployment that has been plaguing headlines. Read More

Not many foodservice consultancies from outside the region fully understand the added challenges of operating in the Middle East. We do, and we bring both a global and local perspective to foodservice strategy and planning no other firm can. 

If you’re a restaurant chain or an investor in the foodservice sector, we can help with growth an expansion, turnarounds, performance optimization, and value-creation strategy. We provide tailored insights about what’s now and what’s next — and why it matters — to help companies become faster, leaner, and more agile.