Grenade sends nutritional boost to international markets

Solihull-based sports nutrition start-up Grenade has fulfilled a £150,000 order in the UAE and expects sales to the country to total £5m over the next five years .

Founded in 2009, the business has seen a steady growth in sales to the UAE since it first entered the market last year.

Support from the Department for International Trade (DIT) helped the business during the Coronavirus pandemic after officials negotiated for the UAE’s strict labelling rules to be relaxed.

Typically, all imported products require Arabic labelling, which at the time was an additional expense many companies could not afford.

To alleviate this additional logistical step in the exporting process, DIT officials in the UAE lobbied for and secured an Arabic labelling exemption for all UK food and drink exports until the end of June 2020 and have since requested an extension.

Toufic Safi, UAE general manager at Grenade, said:  “Without DIT’s support, we would not have been able to get our products to market in the UAE so swiftly during lockdown. Having established a strong presence there, it was extremely important to us that we continued to quickly and safely service our customers throughout the pandemic.

“Overseas sales account for 20% of our annual turnover and we are hoping to see that figure continue to rise as we break into the Australian market.”

Online sales for Grenade  are up 294%, as the company experiences its best year of e-commerce sales to date, having already surpassed 2019 sales.

HM trade commissioner for the Middle East, Simon Penney, said: “As the UK’s largest export market in the Middle East, the UAE is bursting with opportunities for UK businesses to explore.

“To keep trade flowing DIT officials in the UAE have been supporting businesses like Grenade throughout the Coronavirus pandemic and it’s great to see their hard work paying off.

“Expo 2020 Dubai next year presents an exciting opportunity for the UK to showcase innovation and creativity on a world stage, strengthening trade ties between the UK and the UAE.”

Already exporting to over 100 countries, Grenade is preparing to enter Australia after securing a deal with supermarket giant Woolworths and is set to launch across Germany, Belgium, Switzerland and Scandinavia in the coming months.