Landmark Group’s Strategic Leader and Vice Chairperson – Renuka Jagtiani and VIVA’s CEO – Georg J. Fischer at the opening of VIVA store at Sharjah

On Feb 28, the Landmark Group, one of the largest retail and hospitality organizations in the Middle East, Africa and India has just announced the launch of VIVA, the Middle East’s first food discounter, aiming to tap into the region’s demand for cheaper groceries following the introduction of VAT in January.

With the launch of VIVA, Landmark Group would be pioneering the concept of food discount retail in the region. The brand, which is based on European no-frills supermarket chains such as Lidl and Aldi, will offer a range of private label quality products with the motto of bringing “fresher, cheaper, better” shopping experience to its customers. On Feb 28, there were 4 simultaneous openings of VIVA stores – 2 in Sharjah, 1 in Ajman and 1 in Dubai, making it easier to access for customers living in different communities across the UAE. According to the brand’s roll-out plan, in the first year, there will be 25 VIVA stores opening across the Emirates. Each store will carry a range of more than 1,200 products – 80% exclusive to Landmark, 20% of established European or Asian brands – that will cater to a customer’s full shopping trip.

“This is a very good time to start as the market has matured, and as VAT has come in and people are more conscious of what they are spending,” said Renuka Jagtiani, Strategic Leader and Vice Chairperson of Landmark.

“The products at VIVA have been hand-picked by a team of experienced professionals, sourced from the best markets in Europe and Asia, offering only the freshest and highest quality to our customers in the Middle East,” added Georg J. Fischer, CEO of VIVA.

Due to unfavorable weather for aquaculture in UAE, the demand for imported farmed seafood is very high, and pangasius is gaining more popularity on the country’s menus as a tasty, convenient, and healthy product at affordable price. In 2017, Vietnam exported USD 23 million worth of pangasius to this market. Vinh Hoan is one of VIVA’s first partners of the seafood category. Vinh Hoan was the only Vietnamese pangasius processor meeting all the requirements of the retail giant in terms of product safety, quality, and traceability after over one-year due diligence phase. Vinh Hoan’s frozen fillets and breaded fillets– under VIVA’s own brands- are now available to customers at the seafood counters of the food discounter.