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31 January, 2017 14:30
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OMEGA GROUP`S ZAZA OKUASHVILI RECOGNISED AS BEST INVESTOR OF THE YEAR

Zaza Okuashvili, the wellknown businessman and owner of the Omega Group, has been recognised as the Best Investor of the Year at the 17th annual business award ceremony organised by the Georgian Times Media Holding and Georgian Opinion Research Business International (GORBI).

Omega Group received awards from the honorary jury in the following categories: Biggest Investor, Ultra-modern Technologies, New Jobs and High Standard Services.

Mr. Okuashvili founded the Omega Group in 1991 and has developed it into one of the most successful and distinguished business corporations in Georgia today.

The Group comprises a number of companies each performing successfully in different business sectors. It can therefore genuinely be described as having a multi-profile direction. Its performance in a variety of market sectors is enhanced by the adoption of high quality technologies.

The strategic goal of Omega is to contribute to Georgia's economic growth in two ways: by delivering a top quality product and by bringing world class technologies to our own markets.

Within the Group:

OGT is the country's leading tobacco manufacturer. Its factory produces the highest quality domestic and international brands. Their popularity comes from aiming to achieve the best taste to meet the demands of the market. Underlying this is a fusion between the company's longstanding traditions and the constant application of modern, global standards.

Omega Tegi is the Group's printing facility. The printing house is equipped with the latest and most specialised technologies in order to ensure that each phase of printing delivers the highest quality product. Omega Tegi has the prestigious ISO 9001-2008 certificate in recognition of its quality management system of printing and distribution. In 2008, Omega Tegi was acknowledged as a "partner enterprise" by Heidelberg, who are world leaders in the field of printing. Omega Motors was founded in 1999, starting as the importer for BMW. Though based in Tbilisi, it now has country-wide coverage in meeting the needs of Georgia's automobile market. Its specially-designed outlets, including showrooms, offices and service centers, were opened on the 8th February, 2002.

Omega Group have succeeded in attracting significant international investment to Georgia, through co-operation with global brands such as BMW, MINI, Maserati, General Motors, Chevrolet, Opel, IVECO and Heidelberg. The investments attracted and made by Omega total hundreds of millions of US dollars.

Besides this, they have made a major additional contribution to the Georgian economy: both as tax payer, having contributed to date a total of GEL 1.5 billion to the state budget, and as employer, with several thousand people in work and with hundreds of new jobs created in Omega's companies across the country.

Asked to summaries the Omega brand, and also his business approach, Zaza Okuashvili puts it clearly: "Local strength. Global vision.”

ZAZA OKUASHVILI: "WE SEE OURSELVES AS INVESTORS, INNOVATORS AND BUILDERS"

- What plans do Omega Group have for the future?

- The companies within the Group will continue to drive forward and develop their strengths in each of their existing sectors. But, in addition, construction is an area that I would like to develop. After all, we are already building our own premises. I think that it would be an exciting challenge to take on hotel construction and also possibly housing.

- What innovations do you intend to offer your customers?

- It is essential to understand our customers' requirements. Our marketing teams are already hard at work. I think that that has to be the route for providing customer service. But I am also seeing how the experience we have obtained in Britain could be used to improve service and bring in further innovation.

One example is the retail area we are building in Tbilisi bringing a new elegant shopping street to Tbilisi. We hope that the first part of the project will be open in April.

- What about your investment plans?

- We now have two main areas of focus. One is the new "shopping street" in Tbilisi that I just mentioned. The other is a new trading centre in Batumi where we will have modern show room facilities for BMW, MINI and other prestigious car makes. The showrooms are planned to open in the beginning of next year. Our investments will continue and we have plans for other show rooms and service centres.

- How do you assess the Government's policy towards business?

- I see the Government as trying to attract investment, both domestic and international. Such efforts should be encouraged. We should call for as much progress as possible to create the right business environment in Georgia. It is essential for our businesses and industry to feel motivated.

- Was it important for you to participate in the Georgian Times Business Awards?

- Very much so. Events like these are an example of what I was just talking about. It is very important for business in Georgia to be encouraged and motivated to raise standards of service and to be competitive. I see my own companies as investors, innovators and builders; and I am grateful to the Georgian Times and to GORBI, and to all the individuals involved in organising such an important event, for supporting and encouraging business and allowing me to be part of the competition.

“ The Georgian TIMES”, January, 2017

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