INTERVIEW WITH ABDUL AHAD SHAIKH, MD MEHFIL EVENT PLANNER
Sep 12 - 18, 2011
PAGE: TELL US SOMETHING ABOUT YOURSELF?
AHAD SHAIKH: I belong to a Sindhi Shaikh family. My native place is Pano Aqil, district Sukkur. My father is a general physician and serving at CDGK. I started my own business of catering and decoration in 2002 with a name of Mehfil Event Planner. In the beginning, I had to work hard. I came across many hardships and tough time. It was a challenge for me for I was little known with catering and decoration. With the passage of time, I started utilizing my marketing and business skills. I got fame as a good caterer in Karachi. I was strictly committed with food quality and cleanliness and well-decorated decoration, which sounded to be a key of success in catering industry. I have been running Mehfil almost since 2002 and at this point of time, I got a brand name in Karachi. Mehfil has served many well-reputed organizations such as IBA, Preston University, University of Karachi, Siemen, etc. I have always given priority to quality work that is why the slogan of my company is "style & service delivered". With Mehfil, we promise to offer you a spectacular event that client will never forget.
PAGE: WHAT ARE YOUR VIEWS ABOUT FAMOUS FOOD PRODUCTS IN WEDDING CEREMONIES IN PAKISTAN?
AHAD SHAIKH: In Pakistan, there are so many food products. Of them, the most famous food products are Pakistani dishes such as Biryani , Qorma, mouth watering food such as BBQ, seafood, and Chinese foods with delicious sweets such as kulfi, cream ceramal, fruit trifle etc. Mehfil offers all sorts of foods as per client's requirements.
PAGE: WHERE DOES CATERING INDUSTRY STAND IN THE COUNTRY?
AHAD SHAIKH: In Asia, people are very much keen of eating. Therefore, the catering business is quite profitable here. Specially, I do like the business in which there is more margin for social gatherings. I interact with different clients at every next event, which enhances my experience as well as food/service attitude.
PAGE: YOUR VIEWS ABOUT PROGRESS OF MEHFIL PVT. LTD AND HOW DO YOU SEE THE FUTURE OF FOOD RELATED BUSINESS?
AHAD SHAIKH: Mehfil has become rather large company in Karachi, which is making me think to expand it to throughout Pakistan. We have different venues in posh areas of Karachi for our valued clients. As, I have mentioned above, in starting Mehfil was a small business, but with the passage of time, it has served in some cities of Sindh which has given us good feedback and motivation to expand our coverage area it more and more. People are very interested in eating food and in future, there will be good demand of food in Pakistan.
PAGE: WHAT DO YOU SAY ABOUT TAXATION ON CATERING SERVICES?
AHAD SHAIKH: As per the tax policy, taxes that we are charged are six per cent for decorating and 16 per cent for food items. We have always gone through the proper channel under the rules and regulations.
PAGE: WHAT IS THE LEVEL OF COMPETITION IN THE CATERING SECTOR?
AHAD SHAIKH: In Karachi, food demand is increasing day by day. So, I must say, we have to be very much professional in our service. Several competitors are providing quality services.