60 SEC­ONDS WITH OMAR TABBAA, CHAIR­MAN AND CEO OF EAT RESTAU­RANT GROUP

Founded in 1998 by three broth­ers, Omar, Khalid and Taw­fiq Tabbaa, EAT Jor­dan is to­day one of the largest and fastest-grow­ing restau­rant groups in Jor­dan. HN spoke to Omar Tabbaa to dis­cover more about the group’s de­vel­op­ment and new ven­tures

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What culi­nary pref­er­ences have you ob­served among Jor­da­ni­ans?

I’ve no­ticed that Jor­da­ni­ans have grown in­creas­ingly in­ter­ested in unique culi­nary ex­pe­ri­ences, so we’ve made it a point to set each of our brands apart, with great fun con­cepts. While Caserec­cio con­tin­ues to at­tract loyal cus­tomers with its clas­sic Ital­ian recipes, Azkadenya has won the hearts of younger and older gen­er­a­tions alike, with its tra­di­tional menu and mod­ern-retro style. Jor­da­ni­ans are no dif­fer­ent than other clien­tele in this re­gard.

How did EAT Group achieve its sta­tus as a re­gional fran­chis­ing com­pany?

Fran­chis­ing usu­ally presents risks when it comes to main­tain­ing qual­ity and stan­dards on a large scale, but our metic­u­lous in­ter­nal sys­tem en­sures that the knowhow is trans­ferred to all of our branches, en­abling us to ex­pand with­out com­pro­mis­ing qual­ity. Nearly 10 years have passed since we ven­tured into fran­chis­ing and the hard work and ded­i­ca­tion put in by our­selves and our team have made it a truly worth­while jour­ney. The group al­ready has a pres­ence in the UAE, Saudi Ara­bia, Bahrain, Iraq, Pales­tine and Canada, and we hope to ex­tend our reach even fur­ther.

Where do you see the in­dus­try head­ing?

I an­tic­i­pate a wave of in­no­va­tion that will trans­form the F&B scene here. While some might think sur­viv­ing in a fast-chang­ing en­vi­ron­ment like ours is par­tic­u­larly chal­leng­ing, I be­lieve it cre­ates an at­mos­phere of healthy com­pe­ti­tion that en­cour­ages growth. As for EAT, we rec­og­nize the po­ten­tial for cre­at­ing last­ing change lo­cally and re­gion­ally through the group’s in­vest­ment arm, Eat In­vest. We also plan to con­tinue with our ex­pan­sion in the Gulf, Egypt and North Amer­ica, and to in­vest in food tech­nolo­gies, as well as restau­rants across the re­gion at var­i­ous stages of de­vel­op­ment.

Omar Tabbaa

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