Message from the Chairman

"I am an optimist. It does not seem too much use being anything else." - Sir Winston Churchill.

I too am an optimist and agree with Helen Keller that ‘the only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no vision’. So while I believe that every man has the right to an adequate standard of living in a well-functioning society, my dream is to make a significant difference in the world by facilitating and supporting this idea in order to see it come to fruition.

This exciting journey is already underway as Solitaire IGT scouts, connects and establishes world-class brands in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. However, this is merely the beginning. The fall of dictatorial regimes and the end of harsh governance in some of these areas has resulted in fresh opportunities, including many fundamental socio-economic changes in the lives of current and future residents of these communities. It has also levelled the playing field for founding businesses that stimulate economies and seek to launch privately funded infrastructure projects requiring various support services, like qualified manpower, housing, raw materials, construction, transportation and technology.

Through challenging ourselves with things we never thought were possible, Solitaire IGT is rapidly learning that we can overcome anything. Today, a diversified company with operations in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco, our continued profitable growth is testament to the fact. Furthermore, our extensive network and influential connections – through our sister company Solitaire Connections – have been integral in opening doors for franchisers and franchisees looking to set up shop in the region.

To this end, we remain dedicated to delivering distinguishable service and value to the brands we work with and represent, while endeavouring to build effective partnerships in the future that will further strengthen our presence in international markets and ensure success for years to come. After all, in the words of Dwight D. Eisenhower, “What counts is not necessarily the size of the dog in the fight — it’s the size of the fight in the dog.”

Hamdi A. Osman, Solitaire IGT Chairman and former Senior Vice President of FedEx Express Middle East, Indian Subcontinent and Africa