Dr.Vijayan Nambiar, Head, Retail Business, Al Hathboor International, is a marketing professional with over 33 years of Gulf experience behind him. Dr. Nambiar oversees the retail division consisting of FMCG, Stationary, Arts and Autocare at Al Hathboor Group for the past 18 months.
Hailing from Neeleshwaram, Kasaragod in Kerala, Dr. Nambiar was brought up in Mumbai in a conservative Keralite family. His father, Ramachandran was working in E.S Patanwala, makers of Afghan Snow and his mother, Lakshmi, was a home maker. Having missed admission into medical college by a narrow margin, he graduated in pharmaceuticals and then did his master’s in management studies from Mumbai University.
In 1988, when Dr. Nambiar landed in the UAE, the market was emerging out of recession, and NMC Trading LLC was poised to establish itself as a major player. He was recruited to promote Nivea, a well-known brand, in the retail sector of the UAE. He spearheaded the effort to meet the challenge of getting retail space through trade networking, pull and push strategies, and visibility drives.
Between January 1988 and January 2001 Dr. Nambiar was the sales/marketing Manager at NMC Trading, when he initiated market development programmes, managed profit and revenue growth and launched new brands at regular intervals.
As the organisation grew, Dr. Nambiar was given more responsibility. For him, setting up the distribution network with the best set of people was the primary challenge. The task of setting up a strong network in Dubai and Northern Emirates, affected by the Gulf war in 1990, was a tough one. His team succeeded in creating the UAE distribution network, enabling NMC Trading to attract more brands in its portfolio. In 1996, he became marketing manager of the FMCG division and, four years later, he was heading the trading division as the General Manager. It was during his time as General Manager that he unleashed the true potential of the pharmaceutical and medical division. He also helped launch the food and veterinary division. He was able to manage the divisions profitably and developed infrastructure for supply chain efficiency
Since 2000, NMCT has added an average of 10 manufacturers every year, taking it to leading positions in the FMCG, pharma and medical equipment segments. NMCT’s commitment to business excellence was reflected in the organisation winning awards like MRM Business Award and SKEA Appreciation Award. Project Billion was an ambitious goal conceived and initiated by the team. He rose to the position of Chief Operating Officer at NMC Trading later.
As Chief Operating Officerat NMCT stationed at Abu Dhabi, Dr. Nambiar managed the reengineering of the distribution business across the UAE market with theultimate aim of facilitating business performance improvements. He successfully developing multi-channel solutions for business development and played a pivotal role in the listing of the group in the London Stock Exchange. Dr. Nambiar can proudly say that he helped develop seven business units across Pharmaceuticals, medical equipment, and FMCG. During the period he also managed an advertising agency, retail pharmacy and launched of Neopharma range acrossthe GCC markets
Dr. Nambiar joined Al Hathboor International in January 2022 and today he is heading key divisions at the company. Dr. Nambiar is in charge of the retail division consisting of FMCG, Stationary, Arts and Autocare at Al Hathboor Group for the past 18 months.
Al Hathboor Group is a forward thinking company that brings the best in technology together to create integrated solutions to address the needs of its customers.
Al Hathboor was launched in 1954, when Mr. Saif Obaid Al Hathboor ventured into the exclusive Textile business, exploring new avenues and tapping vista of opportunities which resulted in the Group’s enormous success.
Progressing in tandem with the nation, Al Hathboor’s first business expansion was in the arena of air conditioning and refrigeration industry. The onset of ‘70s witnessed the addition of different Trading Division followed swiftly by the launch of one of the First Supermarkets in the UAE.Through the years, the founder of the company Mr. Saif Obaid Al Hathboor’s fervent business acumen complemented by his skillful selection of products has proved vital in rapid expansion of the company. As the Group expanded its scope, its intensity for meeting the industrial and commercial requirements in the UAE and Gulf contributed significantly to the Group’s increased momentum.
Subsequently, a swift-expanding business called for a streamlined approach to the activities of various divisions to function within the Group which culminated in the formation of “Al Hathboor Group” in 1982. Moreover, under the leadership of its current Chairman, Mr. Abdulla Saif Obaid Al Hathboor, the group has grown to become one of the recognized business houses in the Gulf region today.
In addition to marketing, distribution, and re-exporting of internationally-acclaimed brands, Al Hathboor Group is one of its kinds to offer the broad spectrum of products under one roof. This assures the Group`s position as one of the front runner in the entire region.
The company has employees hailing from all parts of the world, who are supported by an innovative and visionary management that has enabled the Group to achieve impressive and sustained growth for over four decades.
As a reputed company, Al Hathboor Group has grown with the United Arab Emirates. Starting a small supplier of products/services to oil field and ship stores in 1969, the company is today one of the region’s most recognised business group with interests in various areas such as General Trading, Auto care, Real estate, Beauty, Food and Technology sectors.Al Hathboor Group has become synonymous with dynamic growth, evidenced by its commitment to develop and grow businesses in multiple sectors.
Al Hathboor Group’s real estate division is engaged in the development and leasing of properties across the UAE. These include hotels, residential apartments, villas, office blocks and warehouses. The group has established itself as a prominent participant as part of the booming construction industry throughout the Gulf.
Al Hathboor distinguishes itself from the rest by understanding its customers’ needs and providing them with creative & end-to-end solutions, AI Hathboor adds immense value to its partners.
In Al Hathboor, the team believes in giving back to society and the Group has contributed towards the community welfare. It has actively participated in approved development programmes that include anti-smoking and breast cancer awareness campaigns. The various CSR activities of the company, it believes, are a force for good, positive change in people’s lives. The company’s leadership believes that every business has a responsibility towards the development, preservation, and sustainability of the world we live in. The company maintains a responsible business behavior by ensuring that its sustainability pillars –People, Partners & Planet — are embedded into the core of its business.
Dr. Nambiar’s personal formula of success is based on a focused approach to the goals set, time management and to consider failure as the first step to success. Dr. Nambiar has his mother to thank for his determination, his brother for his courage to face life in spite of all adversities, his wife for her personality, and his father for his simplicity. “I was deeply inspired by G.G. Pai, my first boss in my professional life.”
With his doctorate in Business Administration Dr. Nambiar hopes to share his collective knowledge and acumen over the past decades with budding business management students and help them achieve their dreams. His motto in life is to ‘continue my odyssey of life weaving new dreams and helping others achieve their’s on the way’.
The President of Toastmasters Dubai and the Vice-President of the region, Dr. Nambiar is an active speaker at many of the organisation’s meetings. In his free time, Dr. Nambiar loves to watch cricket, movies and catch up on his reading. Dr. Nambiar is married to Meera, a teacher and the couple has a daughter, Neha, a dentist and a soon-to-be-published writer.
Address: Saif Obaid Al Hathboor Building, Airport Road, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Residence: 102, NEO Al Mankhool,
Address in India: Neha Sadan, Cherumakkavu, Neeleshwaram, Kasaracode, Kerala, India.