A recent report issued by the Business Registration & Licensing (BRL) Sector in Dubai Economy states that the Emirate of Dubai has 29 local and international companies engaged in mineral water production including the Dubai Refreshment Company (DRC), which has been in the market for 60 years. The average age of the companies is 15 years.
Ahmad Alshaer, Senior Manager, Follow-up and Development Division in BRL said: “Local companies play an active role in the mineral water market, especially with the high demand of the industry, in addition to the ease of marketing its products. Competition in between local companies is greater than those with foreign companies, and customers tend to deal with local companies more, especially for mineral water, with some companies in the sector operating from the 1960s”.
Mineral water is one of the most popular commodities in the UAE and there are several brands in the country including Mai Dubai Company for Bottled Drinking Water, Dubai Refreshment Company, Oasis Pure Water, Nestle Waters Factory, Union Beverages Factory and others, added Alshaer.
The top ten areas for companies producing mineral water include Al Quoz Industrial Area 4, Dubai Investment Park 2, Hatta, Al Qusais 1, Jebel Ali, Al Quoz 2, Al Qusais Industrial Area 5, Ras Al Khor Industrial Area 2, Al Mankhool, and Umm Hurair.
In terms of legal forms of companies producing mineral water, Limited Liability Company (LLC) ranked first at 76 per cent, followed by One-Person Limited Liability Company (9 per cent), General Partnership and Sole Proprietorship (6 per cent each), and Branches of Free Zone Companies (3 per cent).
Alexander van ‘t Riet, CEO of Mai Dubai, said: “While being the youngest bottled water brand in the UAE, Mai Dubai’s rapid growth to the number two brand can be attributed to innovation, quality and sustainability. Currently, we are the only bottled water company in the world of our size which operates 100% on solar energy. Furthermore, the recent launch of our Zero Sodium Alkaline water, which ensures faster hydration for an active lifestyle and delivers the great taste of our client’s favorite water, has yet again demonstrated our dedication to bring value added quality innovation that meets the demand of the consumer.”
“Dubai Refreshment Company was established in 1959 and obtained its license from PepsiCo in 1962 where it manufactures and distributes beverages. In 2004, the company started producing and distributing Aquafina water which is one of the bestselling brands of bottled water globally, said Tarek Al Sakka, CEO of DRC.
Al Sakka noted that in 2016, Dubai Refreshment Co. has moved to its new state of the art facility and headquarters, located in Dubai Investment Park. The new facility is considered one of the largest factories of beverage and water plants in the Middle East and Gulf. It is equipped with the latest technologically advanced machinery developed to provide the best in class products according to both international and local standards”.
DRC shares the same vision of the UAE government for sustainable energy, as the company has installed solar panels that provides more than 40% of its energy requirements. Moreover, the facility includes a wastewater treatment plant which treats wastewater discharged from the manufacturing processes, that can be used in irrigation and more. The demand for Aquafina water is steadily increasing due to the high quality and hygienic standards of the brand which is considered the number one water brand in the world.
Trading in the drinking water sector is permitted only if the companies operate in conformity with the mandatory UAE system for regulating drinking water to ensure the best standards and practices that protect public health and support the national economy.
The companies in the sector adhere to the highest standards of quality and health, starting from water extraction, through sanitary testing and packaging processes, to distribution to provide 100% pure mineral water with purity and integrated mineral components that nourish human health.