There is no doubt that technology has been a great contributor to innovation across various fields. E-commerce and grocery apps have been thriving, especially during the pandemic.
Arzag Plus is a Saudi-based marketplace that eliminates the barriers of starting a food and beverage business and enables providers to sell directly to small and new business owners. The concept was co-founded by Amar Al-Ameer and Abdulghani Alnemer.
But what makes it stand out? Unlike e-marketplaces and grocery apps, Arzag Plus specifically caters to the Horeca market. The popularity of food trucks, home businesses, boutique hotels and newly opened cafes and restaurants have all contributed to making the concept more appealing. Besides its role as a link between businesses, the startup provides a customized delivery service that caters to the needs of different businesses.
The team of Arzag Plus conducted extensive research to better understand the market needs before getting involved in the Horeca industry. The startup’s founders understood that business owners faced a true supply problem without any available solution, as very few applications catered to the Horeca industry. Most operating companies served very large and well-known international chains, while the smaller segment was left out because of low consumption. Many were located outside of the main Saudi cities, which left them with a supply shortage.
What Arzag Plus brought to the market is the capacity for smaller businesses to connect with bigger suppliers. The startup has strong ties with a number of international food brands in KSA to provide Horeca products that it can supply to business owners, food trucks, chefs, restaurants and cafes.
Arzag Plus is aiming to digitize the food service sector and change the current offline behavior to keep up with the high demand for tech solutions and shift in customer behavior. It is doing so through building affordable solutions and working closely with customers to understand their pain points and needs .
The HoReCa products provided on Arzag Plus are specialized products that help businesses reduce cost and waste unlike wholesale. These products are specially packaged for delivery options or cooking. They are reusable, easy to store with minimal waste, and have a superior quality. Well established restaurants and chains know how to use these products and have been using them for a while. However, new businesses have to go through the process of testing and purchasing retail products until they figure out how to access HoReCa products. This is where Arzag Plus comes in, helping them directly purchase specialized products in quantities aligned with their sales volume and production line with the flexibility of increasing orders as they grow.
We work as a partner not as a provider. We help the customer find the best solutions while reducing cost
The second obstacle that smaller businesses face was accessing HoReCa products that are only available in main cities. By setting distribution hubs, Arzag Plus has been able to cover all KSA regions using logistic solutions built inhouse and by partnering up with other logistics providers.
When asked about the impact Covid-19 had on their operations, the founders said that they were in the right business at the right time. The increase in customers’ digital behavior in general provided the full ecosystem solutions Arzag Plus had in place made us an efficient and reliable shopping channel. The world was not prepared for a lockdown, and food providers have been operating offline for so long that a great gap was found when demand on food orders spiked during the pandemic.
This behavioral shift in lifestyle has made it essential to build and constantly develop new features to cope with the fast market changes and high customer demand.
Since its pivot in February 2021, and its decision to serve HoReCa users, Arzag Plus has been able to attract over 5,000 registered users, alongside its 60,000 existing app users: a clientele that includes individuals who are interested in HoReCa items and large families that shop in bulk.
Currently, the company has hundreds of loyal customers, food trucks, restaurants, cafes, home business owners who rely on Arzag Plus in their day to day supply.