The healthiest snack company in the region, House of Pops, has won the SME Business of the Year category at this year’s SME Awards 2022.
The award was presented during a ceremony on November 9, 2022, at the RitzCarlton hotel, JBR, Dubai, when the region’s top small and medium enterprises gathered to celebrate their hard work and expertise. House of Pops’ remarkable business growth story wowed the judges, among a record cohort of 135 finalists in the annual award.
A panel of independent judges assessed each entrant across a set of broad business metrics including financial performance, employee development, corporate culture, innovation, expansion, and strategy.
The company’s bang-on trend range of ice pops has seen phenomenal local and regional growth since inception in 2018, now serving its range of five-ingredient, organic, plant-based, and additive free treats to a wide audience, from beachgoers to boardrooms.
CEO Mazen Kanaan says, “This award stands as validation of our sustainable business ethos; our desire to deliver healthier snacks and our mission to create all-natural, refined sugar and preservative-free, clean label products, shored up by a tangible desire to ensure we meet current ESG goals. We need to thank everyone involved with House of Pops: our staff, our stakeholders, and, of course, our lovely, loyal and ever-growing customer base.”
Mazen says the award-one of 20 delivered on the night-came due to House of Pops’ positive, opportunity seeking business mindset. “The judges saw that we are a company which constantly innovates, and keeps up with the latest consumer trends, from being plant-based to delivering treats suitable for those on keto diets, for example. We keep our values and consumers at the core of all our decisions. Our journey has been a fantastic one, thanks to the dedication, expertise and passion of every single member of our team.”
In response to changing work practices, the company offers a hybrid working model, allowing staff to work remotely and flexibly-with the award-winning CEO adding, “because we believe the team can accomplish great things in an environment and business model they are most comfortable with. COVID proved that, and now shouldn’t be any different.”
Furthermore, the dynamic company feels the award complements the decision to recruit top talent from large multinational companies (such as Unilever, Nestle and Baskin Robbins…) all dedicated to the business across marketing, operations, and business development.
Award organizers, MEED-GlobalData, celebrates 11 years of supporting the regional SME community by enabling entrants to showcase their business practices, benchmark against peers and gain valuable insights from mentors and judges to further strengthen their proposition.
“SMEs are the backbone of the economy,” says MEED Group Commercial Director Sonia Kerrigan. “According to government data, there are some 350,000 SMEs in total in the UAE alone, representing more than 94 per cent of all active companies in the nation.”
“Collectively, they employ some 86 per cent of the private sector labour force and constitute over 60 per cent of total GDP.”
“It is, therefore, more important than ever to recognise the role they play in accelerating growth across the region as it continues to recover from the pandemic and the softening economic environment,” Kerrigan added.