Sunday, 23rd May 2021 | volume 01 | issue 01
Get to know Dubai Restaurants Group

Over the past year, the restaurant industry has had to face a multitude of challenges. As the global coronavirus pandemic caused closures all over the world and our industry endured its most difficult period ever, it was clear that the F&B sector needed to unite to give ourselves a voice to ensure our interests were heard in these tough times.

While Dubai has led the way globally in continuing to operate as a world class dining destination, the challenges faced by its restaurants have increased. From delivery aggregators to landlords, industry leaders have spent the last year speaking out about the most important issues that restaurants face, but without one unified voice.

Until now. Working under the patronage of Dubai Chamber of Commerce, Dubai Restaurants Group (DRG) brings the industry together as one to speak directly to critical stakeholders in government and raise the issues that matter to you. DRG has also worked to endorse the government’s vaccination drive and encouraged the city’s restaurant staff to get vaccinated, in order for Dubai’s restaurants to be able to operate in the current climate.

With a board that includes many of the F&B industry's most respected and influential people, Dubai Restaurants Group will work to further enhance the city's reputation as a leading global food destination and facilitate real change in the working practices that affect every restaurant, as well as working with government agencies such as the National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority to help define regulations affecting the industry as a whole.

Chairman of the board is Mubarak Bin Fahad of The Tashas Group; vice chairman is Abdulla Al Mulla. managing director and co-founder of Home Bakery; secretary general is Kunal Lahori, founder and CEO of Pret To Go; also on the board are Naim Maadad, chief executive and founder of Gates Hospitality; Walid Fakih, general manager of McDonald's UAE; Khalid Bin Hadher, CEO of Bin Hadher Group; Mert Askin, president of food and beverage at the Azadea Group; Goktug Seckiner, regional representative of Dogus Group; Max Grenard of Wasl Hospitality & Leisure; and Amit Nayak, vice president Hospitality Asset Managers Association MEA.


Following consultation at the highest levels of government, we have seen social distancing requirements at restaurants in Dubai reduced to two metres from the previous three metres, a decision that will help our venues increase their capacity and revenue, while bars have been reopened and live entertainment has returned.

Lately we have seen Zomato reverse its decision to charge commission on delivery and other fees following pressure put on it by leading industry figures and by uniting under the Dubai Restaurants Group banner we will be able to further ensure the interests of our members and the F&B sector at large are looked after.

At the end of this month, from May 31 until June 2, our industry will be coming together in Dubai once more for The Hotel Show. As part of this, Dubai Restaurants Group will be supporting The F&B Stakeholders Summit, two days of discussions and panels featuring industry heavyweights including Andy Cuthbert, Samantha Wood, Joey Ghazal, Antonio Gonzalez, plus many more, and chaired by our board member Naim Maadad.

Dubai Restaurants Group is also set to become a centre for research and reports highlighting F&B industry trends. In our first report with POSist released earlier this year, we gained insight from hundreds of restaurant operators in the UAE to understand how severe the impact of the pandemic has been and how the industry will need to adapt in the coming years.


To be part of the conversation and help shape the future of Dubai’s F&B industry you can apply to be a member. Some of the many benefits of joining Dubai Restaurants Group include preferential supplier and insurance rates, the opportunity to attend industry networking events, access to the knowledge hub of unique reports and research, and mentorship from leading F&B stakeholders.

By becoming a member you will be the first to know about major changes in our industry, receiving direct communication on the issues that affect your restaurant on a day-to-day basis. Contact for more information on how you can become a member.

There are also sponsorship opportunities available that will allow you to have your voice heard across the industry and speak directly to its members at in-person events or through our digital platforms.

If you’re an F&B expert who wishes to share your knowledge and expertise with the industry, you can also join the Dubai Restaurants Group Advisory Board and play a key role in making the decisions that will help the city’s F&B industry prosper.

We may be going through the most challenging time we have ever faced, but by uniting together under the Dubai Restaurants Group banner we will be able to make positive changes and ensure a brighter future for all.

For more information, and to express an interest in becoming a board member or sponsor, contact To find out more about becoming an advisor to the board, click here.

The DRG board

Join us on our shared journey.

© Dubai Restaurants Group 2021.
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