Industry News | June 12, 2008

Maui Wowi Furthers Its Middle East Presence

Maui Wowi Hawaiian today announced it has signed its second master franchise agreement in the EMEA (Europe-Middle East-Africa) region with Takween Commercial Investments. The agreement, covering all of Saudi Arabia, will allow Takween to open fixed Maui Wowi Hawaiian locations, kiosks, and carts as well as sell sub-franchises throughout the Middle Eastern region.

Takween Commercial Investments approached Maui Wowi Hawaiian after extensive research on the internet. Takween’s Maui Wowi Hawaiian operations will be led by Mohammed Alhumaidhi, who also serves as vice CEO of Alamat Al Ard Trading, a medical and food industry enterprise.

“Specialty drinks, and especially healthy beverages like fruit smoothies, are of growing interest to Saudis. We believe that the universal appeal of Hawaiian culture, combined with the demand for smoothies and world-class gourmet coffee in our country, will make Maui Wowi Hawaiian successful here,” Mr. Alhumaidhi says.

Now numbering over 400 franchised operating units across the U.S., Maui Wowi Hawaiian is the original fruit smoothie drink franchise. Founded by Australian couple Jeff and Jill Summerhays, Maui Wowi has grown from a single smoothie booth at arts and cultural festivals to a world leader in the franchised coffee/smoothie field.

The company’s creations consist of gourmet blends from the Kona district of Hawaii as well as blends from the sister islands of Molokai, Kauai, and Maui.

In recent years Maui Wowi Hawaiian has also expanded to include genuine Hawaiian lifestyle merchandise. The chain has been named to Entrepreneur magazine’s Franchise 500 for the past five consecutive years and has twice ranked as one of the fastest-growing private companies on INC magazine’s INC 500 listing.

With a population of over 28 million, Saudi Arabia is the Arabian Peninsula’s largest nation. Its current per capita income of $20,700 is more than three times the figure from just ten years ago. The country’s economy is predominantly industrial, although a diversified service sector is developing. The U.S. is Saudi Arabia’s largest single import partner.

Mr. Alhumaidhi, who holds a master’s degree in communications from Marshall University in West Virginia, intends to quickly install a management and operations team to start Maui Wowi operations in Saudi Arabia.

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