SANAA OUAHMANE

Qatar 2020 | TRANSPORT | INTERVIEW

As a car rental company specialized in corporate leasing and fleet management solutions, Hertz is set to fulfil the needs of Qatar's sports management and tourism sectors.

Sanaa Ouahmane
BIOGRAPHY

Sanaa Ouahmane started her automotive career in France in 2004 with Hertz Corporation. In 2011, she was appointed as the general manager of Almana Rent A Car Hertz – Qatar. She is the first and only female leader to direct one of the largest automotive companies in the Middle East. Under her management, Almana Rent A Car Hertz was recognized as the Best Car Rental Company by Rentals.com for four consecutive years. In 2018, she was recognized as Successful Business Woman by Moroccan Press Agency and Best Business Woman in Qatar Automotive Sector by Al Raya Q-Auto Newspaper. In 2017, Almana Group appointed her as used cars general manager in addition to Hertz Qatar's general manager.

What have been Hertz's major developments in Qatar?
Hertz is a renowned name in the global car rental industry, and since Qatar will host the 2022 FIFA World Cup, we decided to tap another market related to sports management, tourism, and business consultancy. Right away, we were able to start building networks, referrals, and contacts. In fact, we have generated new sources of revenue since the beginning of 2019. Like every other market, we had to adapt to the market situation and cater to local demands. We participate in numerous events to express our strength and capability to transport and transfer staff, participants, guests, and clients. We want to display our expertise in this area and acquire referrals in the sports management field. To name a few developments, firstly, we managed the logistics and transportation requirements of the event catering to the exhibitors, management, staff, and press of Qatar International Boat Show (QIBS). We received an award from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry because of this effort. Secondly, we fulfilled the logistical needs of the Qatar Golf Masters European Tournament 2019. We celebrated the end of 2018 as the ground transportation provider of the first Qatar Balloon Festival. Our tagline “we're here to get you there" perfectly resembled our capabilities of handling such an event.

What are the main trends impacting the car rental market in Qatar?
Construction is the biggest sector in Qatar, followed by sports management and tourism. Demand for vehicle transfer is rampant these days. For example, we started to provide chauffeur services for tourists, even those who are on a transit. We are in the process of adding premium saloon vehicles to our fleet for business travelers. Moreover, we are planning to offer seven-seater vans for group tours, big buses for cruise visitors, and pick-ups for desert safaris.

How do you assess the opportunities that the Qatari market presents to Hertz?
Tourism is one of the areas we have started to tap. Qatar is slowly building its reputation as an attractive destination for leisure, entertainment, and retail. Doha Port will be one of the most important winter cruising ports with a number of opportunities for destination management companies to handle cruise visitors. Hertz Qatar will come in this picture as the first point of contact. Hertz drivers will provide tourists with a meet-and-greet service. To further improve our service, we are conducting trainings and workshops for our drivers.

How will the 2022 FIFA World Cup positively impact the car rental industry?
Everybody knows that the 2022 FIFA World Cup will be an avenue to stimulate innovation, promote positivity between Arab countries, and encourage sustainable development. The government is keen on forming more PPPs, thus, encouraging international investors and companies to invest in Qatar. This works in our favor as business consultancy is one of our target sectors. Another key sector for us is sports management and marketing. Our third target sector is tourism. Qatar's tourism sector is a promising market for investors and businesses, and we plan to maximize this opportunity.

What potential for growth do you see in the B2B part of your business for the next two to three years?
We need to strengthen our presence in the sectors related to the 2022 FIFA World Cup and develop partnerships that will boom in the pre-planning stage of this major event. We have started to sign new contracts with companies who recently started to operate in Qatar. Generally, it is hard to predict the market situation two to three years from now but the Qatari government's initiatives give us an indication that the next few years will be great for the sector. Hertz specializes in corporate leasing and fleet management solutions, and our comprehensive lease solutions provide efficient and cost-effective vehicle management. We provide tailored leasing plans and can combine professional fleet management with fixed-cost budgeting to free up our customers' time and resources.