‘Favour for friend’ turns into export business

4 October 2017


What started as a favour to help a friend has turned into a blossoming part-time export business for Imran Iqbal (pictured below), thanks to help from Chamber International.

Chamber International - Imshal Commercial Trading

Almost year after exporting commercial kitchen equipment, including ovens, dishwashers, fridges and utensils, to Qatar for a friend whose business refurbishes hotel, restaurant and fast-food outlet kitchens, Imran is taking orders from other customers.

Imran, a store manager with a British international retail chain, started Imshal Commercial Trading Ltd, Barking, as a part-time enterprise with his wife and contacted Chamber International for help with his first three exports to Qatar which had a £70,000 total value.

He says: “I needed to export the items to Qatar as cost-effectively and in as trouble-free manner as possible so they arrived promptly and safely by meeting the requirements of the authorities there.

“Lydia Moi has been extremely helpful in offering advice and assistance in ensuring that I understood all the bureaucratic requirements and that everything went smoothly. Nothing was too much trouble, even though I sometimes called several times a day, and the help Chamber International provided to me as a first-time exporter was fantastic.” 

Now Imran, who has shipped kitchen equipment from Italy and Germany to Qatar, is looking to develop his business. He adds: “After helping my friend, I realised that I could offer this service to other companies. I’m now working with the equipment suppliers on two potentially big orders, worth a total of around £230,000 to export similar equipment to another Qatari customer.

“I’ve also had a similar, unrelated enquiry, to supply equipment to another organisation based in Dubai. Each order takes a three or four months from start to finish but customers are approaching me so I do not have to look for work which is fine for a part-time enterprise which I see growing with support from Chamber International.”


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