Sheela Rahim, managing director, Al Rawi Printing Press, Dubai in natter with Venkat Raghavan, shares her views and approach towards the printing press for all these years 


Born and raised in Kerala, Sheela Rahim completed her Bachelor of Science in chemistry at Alphonsa College, Kerala. After her post graduation in computer application she had a passion towards the printing industry and later with some experience she has opened a press on her own. 

Sheela says, “My career is a predefined one where my intention was to start a business on my own and to establish it well. After coming to Dubai in the year 1992, I worked with a printing press for two years in administration, where I extended my experience towards the industry. Later, I opened a printing press on my own with the name of Candour in the year 1995. With Gods Grace and the help and inspiration of my husband Adv. Y.A. Rahim, I was bold and with my siblings Joy Francis, Mini Tom and my brother in law Tom Thomas working together as a solid family business we attained this position. Their hard work and dedication is the backbone of the company and without their support and ability to perform as a team, we wouldn’t reach the position we are in now. We were blessed with our first employee being the biggest asset of our company and are still our current production manager, Jaison P Beniyam. Majority of our current employees have been with us from the beginning. As a team we dealt with many customers, which gave us more insight about the trends in the industry. In two years of span we have opened the Al Rawi Printing Press in the year 1997. Also, we analyze and study the market precisely to offer divergent designs and provide the customers with unparalleled quality with the help of state of the art technology we possess.”

Speaking about the trends, she said, “The printing industry has grown a lot compared to the 1990’s. Since, we deal a lot with packaging so I believe that the UV is one of the greatest boons to the industry. UV technology gives in-plant print shops an opportunity to offer something different in the form of high-quality coatings, special effects, processing of unusual printing stocks and rapid delivery of express orders. We are happy that our team is well versed to handle any sort of situation as they are well expertise.” 



● We have received ISO 9001 certification in all the three sectors like environment, safety, and quality.


● We are direclty importing papers from overseas which is allowing us to give a better quality at lowest price


● Our factory works 24 hours a day with flexible shifts

Narrating about the company, she added, “Al Rawi started in 1997 with 15 employees and now we have more than 80 employees. We are determined to provide exquisite quality in packaging works and we are specialized in perfume and cosmetic boxes, pharmaceutical boxes, chocolate boxes, tissue boxes, soap to detergent boxes and all kinds of business stationary. We are able to provide low cost with good quality and services as we import paper and raw materials from various countries. Apart from this, we have recently received the International Organization for Standardization 9001 certification in all the three sectors safety, quality and environment. Our factory works 24 hours a day with flexible shifts and we have regular exports to USA, Middle East and African countries. In addition we do not have an outsider salesman, all our customers approach us by knowing our quality and reputation.”

She further added about the challenges in the industry, retaining employees and awards, “Challenges always persist and most troubling among them is the credit policy, it is quite difficult to handle the credit terms and we strongly do all the evaluation procedure before providing to the clients. Our credit policy day varies from 30 through 120 days depending upon their proficiency. Again, retaining employees are not that difficult if you satisfy their needs, all our employees are satisfied with our provided services like accommodation, insurance and many more. Out of all, we are living here as a family so it’s good for all of us. As far as awards are concerned, I have received an honorary award in the year 2013 and several others.”

Talking about the future plans, “We have recently given a request to the ministry for extra power consumption and we are planning to by a 6 colour machine, which would again allow us to serve better to all standards of customers. I do not think that the increase in the number of printing presses over this region are going to affect us as I am taking care of the business like my own child. Out of all God’s blessing and family support are always there for me and with all these, I am sure that we will expand our business well.”

Signing off, she advices the printing presses to be more cautious while studying the customers financial capabilities before doing a business which will ensure a smooth flow and above all Gods blessings, honesty, and hard work is what pays off at the end of the day.