Foster Encourages Northern Ireland Companies to Cast Nets Overseas

Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster is today encouraging local companies to investigate business opportunities in new markets at the SEAFEX exhibition in Dubai.

Speaking to Northern Ireland food companies exhibiting at SEAFEX, the Minister urged both experienced exporters, and those looking at exporting for the first time, to investigate business opportunities in new rapidly growing markets.

During the visit to the exhibition, Arlene Foster also congratulated Lisburn-based Lowe Refrigeration on its recent export successes in the Gulf.

Lowe has established an impressive track record of success at major exhibitions in the Gulf including the recent Dubai International Air Show as a supplier of both cold and hot equipment for corporate catering.

Arlene Foster said: “Lowe’s achievements in the Emirates are the outcome of a strategic approach to this important market. After completing market development work, the company decided to open a new office and distribution facility in Dubai for the region.

“As a result of this focus, Lowe is now the main supplier of refrigerated display cabinets at renowned international exhibitions SEAFEX and Gulfood. The company, for instance, is providing 500 units to Gulfood, now one of the world’s biggest food and drink exhibitions.”

Lowe has also received advice and practical support from Invest NI’s Dubai team over the past five years and this has proved invaluable. The Minister continued: “Steps taken to develop their presence in the market has enabled Lowe to identify other business opportunities for its rental services in key markets such as Saudi Arabia, where it will be a prime supplier to next month’s Saudi Food Show in Jeddah.

“In addition, the company identified a developing opportunity in the region for kitchen rental equipment for a range of events and has recently launched this new service, enabling it to provide a comprehensive hot and cold catering service in this huge market.”

Mark Wood, Lowe Refrigeration’s General Manager – Dubai, said: “The Gulf is now one of our most significant markets. We have benefited immensely from the advice and support of the Invest NI team in Dubai and Jeddah. In addition to the Dubai International Air Show, SEAFEX and Gulfood, we are providing refrigeration rental services to the Sweets & Snacks ME, Speciality Food Exhibition in the Dubai World Trade Centre and the SIAL Middle East Exhibition in Abu Dhabi.”