EXPLORING NEW POSSIBILITIES

Saudi Arabia 2018-19 | TRANSPORT & AVIATION | INTERVIEW

What started off as a logistics business has now evolved into a firm with different companies that have mastered their respective domains.

Abdulaziz Ibrahim Alissa
BIOGRAPHY
Abdulaziz Ibrahim Alissa was appointed Chairman of the board in 2015, bringing broad investment and financial experience into the company. Before joining BATIC, he was CEO of United Markets International, having held executive level positions at Banque Saudi Fransi prior to that. He also synthesizes his extensive experience in industrial and investment projects in the region as Chairman with a deep understanding of the intricacies of doing business in the Kingdom. He holds a management degree from Menlo College and studied executive courses at Harvard Business School.

What was envisioned with the company's rebranding as BATIC, and how has your service portfolio expanded since then?

The rebranding of Mubarrad to BATIC was orchestrated to correctly reflect the expansion of the core assets of the company that now reach beyond logistics and delve into security, while also highlighting the newly found focus of BATIC on investments and acquisitions. Within the logistics domain, BATIC has expanded its offering, and in 2018, the firm closed a transaction pending regulatory approval for two sets of assets. The first set includes warehouses in Dammam and Riyadh and a trucking fleet from Muhaidib Group, and the second set is one of the largest cold chain warehousing networks in the Kingdom from Dar Al Abbar. Combined with the recent minority investment into Trukkin, an innovative trucking platform, BATIC's services will now include 3PL, cold storage, cold transport, warehousing, and trucking marketplaces. In security, the firm is primarily focused on private security for banks, such as cash in transit and ATM management. Our offshoot AMNCO was renowned for exploring and accelerating into facilities management and electronic payments but BATIC has now acquired full ownership of those segments as well.

Could you tell us more about your vision for using advanced technology in your sector?

We use GPS technology and fleet management systems on all of our trucks. Moreover, BATIC will capitalize on our stake in Trukkin, a company which operates a B2B ground transport platform similar to Uber for the trucking industry. The system matches available truck capacity and drivers with demand from operators.

Vision 2030 envisions to capitalize on the Kingdom's strategic location between Europe, Asia, and Africa to develop the country into a logistic hub. As one of the leading Saudi logistics firms, what are your expectations here?

BATIC is actively exploring logistics hubs on the Red Sea to support Vision 2030 and to interact with countries on the eastern seaboard of Africa. Also, Iraq, which is accessible via ground transport, presents a growing opportunity for Saudi Arabia, and BATIC is currently pursuing several options focused on this new geographic opportunity.

How are you looking to expand your Kingdom-wide network and your activities in the GCC region?

Through the acquisition of Dar Al Abbar, BATIC will gain warehousing capabilities in every major city in Saudi Arabia. Combined with the premium warehousing assets of Al Himmah logistics (owned by Muhaidib Group) in Riyadh and Dammam, this transaction will leave BATIC well positioned to gain market share on existing ground transport services and cold chain storage in the coming years.

What are your primary ambitions for the years ahead?

BATIC's primary initiative is to become the leading logistics consolidator in Saudi Arabia. After closing nearly SAR500-million worth of transactions this year, the current focal point is to successfully integrate all of the recent acquisitions in a cohesive manner while sustaining the drive for expansion in both cold storage and the offerings of AMNCO in cash logistics. The firm's comprehensive approach looks to stay ahead of the prevailing technological trends in logistics and security by identifying long-term growth potential in specialized segments that grow faster than the overall market.