Unison Agency President Discusses Restaurant Branding Opportunities in Afghanistan

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U.S. Embassy Kabul’s Foreign Commercial Service invited Unison’s president and co-founder, Robert Fardi, to speak on the importance of brand for international franchises.

Franchise Conference Dubai, UAE

Robert Fardi, Unison Agency President

“Job creation through trade is a key element of the U.S. government mission in Afghanistan. Franchising has proven to be an ideal market vehicle for both employment and economic growth," said U.S. Embassy Kabul’s Senior Commercial Officer, Walter Koenig.

U.S. Embassy Kabul’s Foreign Commercial Service invited Unison’s president and co-founder, Robert Fardi, to speak on the importance of brand for international franchises. The sponsored franchise trade event for seven major international franchise brands and more than 100 Afghan businessmen was held in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Unison is a brand innovation firm, based in Washington, DC, with expertise in developing brands and digital platforms for the restaurant and hospitality industry.

The over-subscribed event showcased Afghanistan as a viable market for the franchise business model and connected world-class food and beverage franchise brands with Afghan investors, featuring keynote addresses from two companies currently with franchises in Afghanistan: Cherry Berry and Ace Hardware. Representatives from Hot Breads USA, Yum Brands (owners of KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell) and CKE (owners of Carl’s Jr. and Hardees) joined Fardi in the session.

Fardi was forthright in his assessment of prospects for the region. “We are bullish on the opportunities in Afghanistan for food franchising opportunities by U.S. brands. With 60% of the population under twenty years of age, U.S. fast-food brands, in particular, represent both employment and professional training benefits and serve as a public diplomacy tool to stay engaged with our friends in Afghanistan as military involvement winds down in 2014,” Fardi said.

Franchise representatives left the conference with a pronounced sense of optimism and a “belief in the prosperous future of Afghanistan,” according to a press release from the U.S. Embassy Kabul.

“Job creation through trade is a key element of the U.S. government mission in Afghanistan. Franchising has proven to be an ideal market vehicle for both employment and economic growth. With the high demand for American franchise brands in Afghanistan, we are confident that this conference will lead to success for both American franchises and Afghan entrepreneurs,” said Embassy Kabul’s Senior Commercial Officer, Walter Koenig.

Unison will celebrate its 10th anniversary this year. In that time, it has established a formidable restaurant and hospitality practice applying its noted branding expertise to some of the best-known global food brands, including Cava Mezze Grill, Salsarita's, sweetgreen, CaliBurger, Thompson Hospitality, ThinkFoodGroup, Gourmet Gulf Company, Snikiddy, Sushiko, Brown Bag and Artisan House LA among others.

About Unison Agency

Unison is a full-service brand and digital agency that develops integrated solutions by combining strategic, creative and technological capabilities to advance our clients’ brands across all touch points. The agency fosters enduring customer devotion by creating digital brand experiences that bridge the gap between offline and online interactions.

Unison strives to create rich, engaging and truly emotional experiences in the digital realm. By combining high-impact media and seamless usability with the latest technology in e-commerce, social networking and digital mobility, Unison designs online brands that are multifunctional, multi-sensory and multi-platform.

Unison has experience building powerful brands across a wide range of industries, including financial services, government, food service, retail, manufacturing, real estate, pharmaceutical, fashion, entertainment/media, consumer packaged goods and beauty products.

Over the span of a decade, Unison has worked with clients in thirty-five countries around the world, demonstrating its belief that artfully designed brands are universally engaging and transcend cultural and linguistic boundaries.

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Andy Myers
Unison Agency
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