We got a chance to interview Tamer Al Ali, the COO (Chief Operating Officer) of The Cloud – Food Ecosystem. He is a food enthusiast with a vast experience in the F & B industry. He has founded multiple food businesses and led them successfully over the years.
His food tech company, The Cloud, adds exceptional value to restaurant efficiencies. Enabling customers to enjoy a wide variety of global cuisines, The Cloud is an innovative start-up that empowers underutilized kitchens to earn revenue, increase their geographical reach and enter the high-in-demand food delivery space. The solution provides an incredible opportunity for food entrepreneurs and brands to seamlessly open a virtual restaurant in just weeks and enjoy numerous benefits like a rise in sales, fast expansion, knowledgeable resources and reduced wastage with no upfront costs, capital expenditure and minimal risk.
Tamer and his team use advanced and cutting-edge technology to keep on moving forward on this path and provide valuable resources to brands.
Learn more about Tamer Al Ali and The Cloud through our interview below.
Explain the background of you and the company in detail.
Food tech and restaurant enthusiast with 17 years of experience in hospitality. I have been one of the founders and leaders of the successful Italian chain Pizzaro. Led Soulfull (Gourmet Healthy Restaurants founded in 2011) to get the Best Healthy Restaurant Award in UAE (Zomato-2018). Former Founder of Manoushe Extra (neighbourhood bakery) and Bok Bok Grilled Chicken (Virtual Delivery Brand founded in 2018) with two successful exits.
After many years of experience in brick-and-mortar restaurants and having brands operated within cloud kitchens, I joined The Cloud as COO.
Role Summary at The Cloud:
- Create and oversee Virtual delivery brands (concept, menu, branding, development)
- Handling global operations and onboarding (currently 8 countries)
- Leading KSA for growth and partner acquisitions
- Create synergies with cloud kitchens and F&B chains
- Work closely with marketing and growth teams and create strategies and growth plans for virtual brands
- Menu engineering and cost/volume/profit optimization
- People management & leadership
What are your goals?
My goal is to contribute to blitz scaling of The Cloud to reach global heights and to be the #1 CAPEX and OPEX-free virtual brands operator.
What do you feel is the biggest strength of yourself/company right now?
The biggest strength of The Cloud is its scalability and first scaler advantage, adding significant value to improve restaurant efficiencies with zero-cost investment, agile onboarding, optimization, and rewarding returns. Brand creation, culinary, growth, optimizing business and operations are part of my DNA, and my mind can’t pause on this.
What was the path you/your company took to get to where you are today?
We are grateful for being in a fast-paced, growing, and innovative market like the UAE, which inspired us with the margin challenges that restaurants faced in reinventing themselves and creating new demand. At the personal and Cloud levels, we have been part of this delivery revolution from the early stages.
Why did you start (or want to be the head of) this company?
The founders and I had similar visions pre-joining The Cloud. It was a coincidence meeting together, and I’m happy to be part of this growth.
What have been the biggest challenges you’ve had to overcome?
The biggest challenge was being a shareholder in a restaurant chain in difficult times like the early stages of COVID and taking care of employees, and standing together when we were all drained financially.
Give us one word that describes you the best.
What makes you excited about Mondays?
Another great week starts with meeting the leadership team.
What do you value most about your culture and vision?
I value relationships with quality people and want to make sure my team grows and can pass the multiplier to their teams. I celebrate success with teammates, and I believe there are no failures. There are only lessons that are great for our growth.
Tell us about a project that forced you to be innovative and creative.
Far from business: While studying hospitality management in university, we had a domestic travel final project where few students passed, and I was almost hopeless about getting a grade. The project was planning a restoration of an archaeological site. I asked my girlfriend, who’s studying graphic design, to help me with this project, and we did the restoration in the form of animation. Guess what? I passed with a B+.
What are your company’s strategies, and how do they stand unique from your competitors?
We imagined and made the food delivery business simple, exciting, slick, and profitable. Our strategies were built around creating a value chain with a triple win: Happy Customers, Happy Partners, and Happy Us. Great talent, innovation, reinvention, dynamic decision-making, market and demographic knowledge with data available at the fingertip using our friendly tech are key to success and standing ahead of the competition.
What are the key values which helped you to overcome the roadblocks/challenges in your career? Tell us something about your memorable incident in your leadership.
Staying honest about our purpose, why, and what we stand for despite challenges and setbacks. Family, Health, and impeccable reputation are the most important for me.
How do you see the company changing in two years, and how do you see yourself creating that change?
I see The Cloud rocking the top 10 global food delivery markets and dominating many of them. My role is to imagine what is next, building super brands, great customer experience, optimizing, and supporting automation.
Where is your leadership going? What benefits do your clients get from your company in this competitive world?
As The Cloud grows and scales, the leadership role becomes bigger. I don’t see my leadership as in the position given to me rather than from what I can give to the company and my team and what role I can play.
Customer value proposition
Our USP is: Empowering Kitchens to generate income at zero cost within 2 weeks and scaling brands to new cities without any CAPEX and OPEX.
What are the solutions or products offered by your company on par with the current industry standards? Tell us something about your upcoming products or services.
We offer the industry a convenient and agile solution to increase its asset and operational utilization without incurring costs. We work with them closely to maximize income, optimize their supply chain, develop new products with them, and scale them to new locations.
Most restaurants in the market have 60% utilization, which means they have excess capacity to produce and generate more revenue while reducing their fixed cost.
From a customer perspective, we are creating amazing brands with great user experience.
Connect with Tamer Al Ali on LinkedIn.
Find The Cloud on LinkedIn.