Khaled Abdulla Yousef Abdulla Aal Abdulla, chief executive officer of Majan Printing & Packaging, LLC in conversation with Venkat Raghavan

Born and raised in Ras Al Kaimah, United Arab Emirates, Khaled Abdulla Yousef Abdulla Aal Abdulla completed his Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration (major in computer information systems) from University of Arkansas at Little Rock, USA. After completing his education, he was fascinated with the breakthrough in the printing industry and activities involved around them which boost creativity and aptitude.
Speaking about his career, Khaled Aal Abdulla, CEO of Majan Printing and Packaging, said, “My career started as production supervisor (gluing area in-charge) then as a commercial/purchase manager. Over a period of time I was promoted as an administration manager and then as assistant general manager. I gained enough experience, later I got the post of assistant GM and was then promoted as general manager. Finally, I became the chief executive officer and executive member of the board.”

● The Company was established in the year 1996 by a group of local entrepreneurs
● The Company has won many awards
● They started with 120 employees and today they have around 400
● They are specialized in doing folding boxes and cartons

Speaking about the company, he said, “The Company was established in the year 1996 by a group of local entrepreneurs in the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah, in United Arab Emirates. The company was conceptualized because of the recognized packaging requirements of the businesses in the region. Moreover, as free zone and non-free zone companies and number of freelancers emerged, higher demand for printing and packaging services set in. We started with 120 employees and today we have around 400 employees. We adhere to use only raw materials of high standards. We ensure that all prominent and required certifications are available for absolute customers’ satisfaction. Our company is specialized in doing folding boxes and cartons.”
Speaking about the changes in the printing industry and challenges, he said, “There have been considerable changes in the “Prepress” as a result of technology advancement which enables workflow buildup leading to the business growth. Sourcing of raw materials and lead time; storage (how to maintain it in perfect condition); manpower – challenging talent search due to lack of qualified mid-level and top management professionals in the industry are the main challenges in the printing industry.”
Speaking about the company’s success, his own success, awards, and memorable moment, he said, “The ability to maintain quality service at a reasonable price is our company’s success. My success is always identified with customers’ satisfaction – customers getting their packaging needs enhanced with innovative ideas and solutions on time, without compromising on the quality. We have received UAE’s most prominent print awards in the year 2006: Gold Award (KAY Group’ entry), for its innovative mechanism with excellent finishing quality. I felt my team’s satisfaction and harmony the most when we were together at the stage receiving the ‘Best Packaging Company’ award.”
Speaking about his future plans, current market and bad phases, he said, “I still see myself recognized to be leading the company which is regarded as the ‘Number One Packaging Company’ worldwide. This is in view for we keep in our roadmap the plan to expand our product scope by adding new lines backed by innovation and invest more on related businesses like corrugated manufacturing which also serves as a cornerstone of the packaging industry. The current market and industry trends remain challenging since company’s low equity ratio could be much apparent in the next two years. Most customers would be cost cautious; thus, can lead to multiple cash flow issues in the market. Although, studies show market potential for the sheetfed and flexible sectors. The bad phases come in various forms and I suppose every successful company must have gone through it. In our case, we don’t treat this phase as bad, but as constructive. We always value company reputation; hence, our policy in dealing only with trade owners and not with third party companies has been very strict to avoid any copyright or counterfeit product issue. Thus, considerable amount of potential sales is passed up.”
Speaking about opportunities, economic climate, credit period, he said, “Despite increase in the number of presses, we still find equilibrium because of constant market newcomers. Company stability lies in maintaining low overhead to provide competitive cost and quality level of services to the clients. I definitely believe that demand still exists. It is mostly when economic condition hits the company seriously that employee retention becomes a challenge. However, it has been proven that the metrics we use to provide packaging, with fair salary or remuneration and quality of life enforced by supportive management leaders improves our employees’ performance. Thus, achieving higher productivity and loyalty. We provide our staff with accommodation (nearby plant premises) and substantial meals on a daily basis. Since we usually deal with distinguished and huge organizations, our terms are very much controlled and secured. Although we manage to give clients protracted credit period, we make it clear that late payment can risk production orders to be on hold until full receivables are settled.”
About digital market, he said, “Generally, new technology takes time to establish its sensible benefit and has a tendency to stagnate as people don’t like to take risks on methods that don’t have significant testing or backing. Though it is undeniable with history that persistence is the key to those who have an eye on treasure trove from digital market.”
Signing off, he advices, “In order to run a successful business we need to have supportive staff. To have supportive staff we need to treat them well. Also, we should never compromise on the quality of the product. Client satisfaction should be our main motto.”