Claims to have biggest, juiciest, value-for-money burgers in Cyprus
Judging from the “macho” image of the recently launched GrillMan burgers, you would expect Nicholas Poupas to be a gun-toting cowboy ready to shoot his way into the market. But after a brief discussion you realise that this is a soft-spoken, composed man, heading a family business that has set its sights on becoming the leader in frozen meats with a full range of premium burgers and cuts.
But with so many local and imported brands in supermarkets, the obvious question posed to the Managing Director of GrillMan Frozen Foods Ltd. was, “is this not yet another frozen food company with a flashy package?”
“You have not yet tried GrillMan!” he exclaimed, confident that the superior quality of the range of burgers will convince consumers that once they try them they will have a hard time finding a better alternative.
“The “flashy” packaging, as you call it, only adds to our overall promise of quality. What’s inside the pack is of even higher quality. We took great care in designing a package that would dress our brand according to the statement we are trying to make: that we will offer the best quality, value for money proposition in frozen meats in Cyprus.”
“Our selection of meats is always premium quality. Our burgers are bigger and plumper because we use more meat,” Poupas said, proud of the giant 150-gram beef burgers made from prime, imported ground beef.
The brand name stands out and conjures up images of flame-cooked flavour and the juicy taste of BBQ meat as well as the recreational lifestyle associated with barbequing.
The inspiration came from Nicholas’ retired father and testing (and tasting) based on family recipes continued throughout 2011 right until the first packaging rolled off the state-of-the-art production line in January. The brand new factory already employs ten people and meets all health and food standards, such as the ISO 22000:2005 for food safety management systems, the ISO 9001:2008 for quality management systems based on the requirements by business cnsultants Morphi Architecture & Business Design. The facility is also audit certified by TUV Austria Hellas.
As far as output is concerned, Poupas said that GrillMan “can produce ten times the volume presently required by the market and we have tremendous room and potential for expansion. We are not limited to just taking a percentage of today’s market segment. We want to grow the market because consumers have not, till now, had an enticing reason to buy frozen burgers on a regular basis. The convenience, the great taste and the variety we offer, especially with innovative products such as our unique Gyroburger, will change habits and behaviour in Cyprus.”
WHO’S THE BOSS?
Although the recent media blitz with the macho male campaign may have caused a stir among women who are, after all, the majority of shoppers and not men, Nicholas admits that the adverts were a bit cheeky and humorous.
“We do not exclude anyone who loves a great burger. Although you are correct that women do most of the shopping in Cyprus, the consumer and most frequent repeat users of burgers are going to be males. Hence, we wanted to create a message with high impact that was engaging and entertaining. Think of it this way: the woman shopper also buys beer for the household, yet she knows and buys only the brand that the men of the household prefer. The end user, not the shopper, makes the purchasing decision in such cases.”
GrillMan Frozen Foods has also been wise in its investments. It has no distribution or sales force and has outsourced the business to Cosmos Trading, one of the leaders in the wholesale distribution foodstuff and drinks.
VALUE FOR MONEY
The economic crisis has forced many consumers to cut back on dining out and pushed many to dine-in, comparing prices at the supermarket. But isn't the price of 1.70 euros per burger a bit hefty?
Nicholas Poupas insists that the price per weight of the 150 gram beef burger and the premium meat provides customer satisfaction.
“We have developed a premium brand. Having said that, you still have to compare apples with apples. The size and weight of our burgers are much bigger and heavier than our competition. And, I can’t emphasize this enough; the quality of the meats we use is by far superior from those “lower priced” alternatives. So is our price hefty? We believe our burgers are hefty in every way, shape and form.”
Nicholas believes the future is promising for the company.
“We have no past therefore we have only the future to look to. Of course in these trying times, the future hides a lot of unknowns for every business old and new. For now, we see only opportunity.”
He said that he would love to do business with hotels, “but so far our experience is that they are looking for the cheapest possible product, not better quality and we are not willing to compromise on our quality.”
As for looking beyond Cyprus, Poupas concluded that “exports are definitely in our future plans, however, at present we are only concerned with achieving leadership in our home market.”