The ‘left brain’ behind Al Adil’s success: Vandana Datar


August 7, 2023 | By Rupkatha B

Are you looking for any specific Indian masalas (spices), pickles, flour, pulses? Are you missing those sweet-and-tangy candies from childhood? Then look no further because Al Adil Trading has you covered.

Established almost four decades ago in 1984 as a small grocery store in Bur Dubai, today the company sells more than 8,500 food items. Al Adil boasts a 50-store network across the GCC alongside strong online presence. The grocery chain’s online presence is growing “exponentially” recording over 100% year-on-year growth without any downward sales impact on its brick-and-mortar outlets.

So, who’s behind the success of Al Adil?

The ‘Masala King’ of course, Al Adil’s Chairman & Managing Director Dhananjay Datar.

But here’s the thing. The company also owes a lot of its success to the ‘left brain’ leader and Financial Director Vandana Datar, who has been instrumental in driving Al Adil’s growth. She has strengthened the company’s supply chain maintaining healthy supplier relations while lowering costs across various departments. Under her guidance, the company has been recording “skyrocketing” profits.

A word that best defines her leadership style is “thorough,” always placing great emphasis on attention to details, which is crucial to ensure employee happiness and the smooth running of operations.

Elaborating her role in driving the company’s growth story, Datar shared, “My biggest achievement so far will have to be the significant increase in profits during my first year of joining the company. To give you an example, once on reviewing the company’s bookkeeping practices, I noticed some inconsistencies and inefficiencies and implemented new procedures and systems to ensure that all transactions were accurately recorded and accounted for. This not only improved the accuracy of financial statements, but also streamlined the administrative process and increased efficiency and productivity within the company allowing the team to focus on more strategic initiatives.”

Cut to the present, asked about three major focus areas in 2023, Datar said, “Our three key focus areas in 2023 have been retail expansions, improving marketing strategies and adopting an updated technology infrastructure, crucial for the continued growth of our business during this year and beyond.”

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