Electrolux: the opportunities of the Egyptian market

Maissam Hannawi, Managing Director Egypt, Electrolux

Through an interview with the Managing Director Egypt Maissam Hannawi, Electrolux talks about growth opportunities, consumer habits, sustainability and more in this market. The company occupy 2,142 employees and the best-selling categories are electric water heaters, front-load washing machines and single-door refrigerators. Besides, the commercialized brands are Zanussi, Olympic and Ideal.

Business in Egypt has rebounded with strong growth in Q1 this year. Looking forward, what are the main growth opportunities in your market and why?
We have set very clear strategic goals which are deeply embedded in everything we do. In terms of growth, first would be the online business which, like everywhere, has boomed during the pandemic. We already launched our Zanussi webshop as we believe that D2C is the future of retail and sales have grown by substantially year-on-year. Secondly, exports from our factories in Egypt are also a great growth opportunity due to Egypt’s location and existing trade agreements with neighboring countries.

And about Egyptian consumers?
Many are very loyal consumers. Media ads and word of mouth are very important ways to reach Egyptian consumers. When deciding what brand or company to buy, they value reliability and a good aftersales service. We have seen our Net Promoter Score for customer satisfaction almost triple since 2016. This is an outcome of years of continuous improvement – as a market leader in front loading washing machines, water heaters and single-door refrigerator – to ensure a unique experience for our customers.

Let’s talk about the TasteMax and the new products.
“Wow” would be the right word to describe the TasteMax – a fantastic cast iron cooker with the unique “Kebab Shelf” feature, auto-off safety and premium design. It’s simply a pioneer product in Egypt with exceptional performance and is an exciting new offering from the Zanussi brand. Besides the TasteMax, we launched Zanussi new top-loading washing machine earlier in the year and more products are yet to come over the coming months.

You used to be an environmental activist so you must be very excited that Egypt’s cooker factory is the first Electrolux “Zero Landfill-certified site” in the Asia Pacific, Middle East and African regions. Can you share some other local sustainability initiatives with us?
As I used to be so engaged in climate matters, I’m really happy to work for a company where sustainability is so central to our business strategy. In Egypt, we’re very proud of our cooker factory’s certification. We have also implemented the “Say NO to plastic” campaign at all sites in Egypt last year reducing plastic consumption by over 95% and we are aiming for 100% very soon!