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Video: Adnan Durrani, Food and Beverage Investment Specialist

Adnan Durrani speaks about the next Trillion dollar market with mind numbing facts. He has successfully 3 times taken a startup idea from zero to tens / hundreds of millions of dollars within a very short span. He holds a 100% track record of successfully identifying early trends in Food and Beverage industry to benefit from it.

Adnan Durrani founded Vermont Pure in 1991. Today, Vermont Pure/Crystal Rock is the 2nd largest bottled water company in the Northeast U.S. As a principal investor and financial partner in Stonyfield Farms, Inc, he helped build it from $25 million in sales in 1994 to over $70 million and led its sale to Groupe Danone in 2001. Stonyfield today generates over $300 million in sales annually. Adnan Durrani was also a principal of Delicious Brands, Inc, which he scaled, with the financial backing of Carl Icahn, to become the 5th largest cookie brand in the U.S.

What does he think of the halal food market in the US? Play the video below to hear his views on the largely untapped Muslim Market as he quotes facts from Europe and America based on the extensive research undertaken by his invest firm. Adnan Durrani, is a very well known figure in the venture capitalist / investment circles in the Northeast and regularly attends meetings to evaluate investment ideas at Harvard, MIT and other renowned institutions within the US.

Adnan Durrani is leading the panel who will evaluate Entrepreneur Presentation at the American Muslim Consumer Conference this year (Oct 30, 2010 in Hyatt Regency – New Brunswick, NJ) and will provide brutal and open feedback to the Entrepreneurs looking for infusion of large capital into their business.

If you haven’t bought ticket, now is the time to take advantage of meeting Adnan Durrani and many such executives who will be attending the American Muslim Consumer Conference. Hurry, before the tickets are sold out.

Adnan Durrani currently is the Chief Halal Officer at the American Halal Co., Inc. who have launched the Saffron Road brand of halal cuisine at national supermarkets and food stores, such as Whole Foods.

Video: Miles Young, CEO of Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide, On The Muslim Market

Miles Young, CEO of one of the world’s largest Marketing and Advertising Agency, Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide. Ogilvy is a significantly large part of the WPP group which reported $11 Billion in annual revenue last year.

What does he think of the muslim market? Play to hear his views on the largely untapped Muslim Market around the world and the American Muslim Consumer Market in specific. Ogilvy has identified the Muslim market as the next 1 Billion market, next to China and India.

Miles Young is going to speak at the American Muslim Consumer Conference this year (Oct 30, 2010 in Hyatt Regency – New Brunswick, NJ) and will share excerpts from his company’s study and experience in dealing with this market.

If you haven’t bought ticket, now is the time, since it is a fantastic opportunity to meet him and other such successful executives who will be attending the American Muslim Consumer Conference. Hurry, before they get sold out.

Branding Yourself: Creating a PR Presence in the Global Marketplace

Brand Logos

The following is a guest post by Suzy Ismail, author of the book “When Muslim Marriage Fails: Divorce Chronicles and Commentaries.”

In this current era of information overload from online sources, video entertainment, 3D movies, all sorts of gaming, and Kindle connects; one has to wonder whether or not anyone even reads books anymore.  The answer to that question is a tough one.  As the traditional book market does experience a slight decline, publishers and authors are looking for more creative ways to position their products in the public eye and to hype up the salability of traditional paper-back reading.

As Muslims, our rich history of literature and writing along with the importance of reading as encompassed in the first words of “Iqra” in the Holy Quran, are definitely not lost in our modern age.  However, finding time to pick up a book and read does seem to be a common dilemma.  So, what do you do to solve this problem of a declining niche market?

Put your PR to work for you!

This past month, I’ve written and published a book entitled “When Muslim Marriage Fails:  Divorce Chronicles and Commentaries” through Amana publications.

It might be nice to imagine that all a writer has to do is pen the words, publish the book, and then sit back and relax while people pick up copies left and right, but unfortunately, this isn’t the case.  Publishers are having enough difficulty keeping their heads above water in the marketplace without trying to promote the books as well.  It has now become the author’s job to push the product into the public eye and try to keep it there and away from the dead book graveyard for as long as possible.

As a former marketing executive in a big six Public Relations firm, I had a general idea of what needed to be done to promote my work.  Before my book was even released, I attended several writing conferences and events where I made frequent mention of the work.  After its release, I hit the blogosphere and began reaching out to all the Muslim magazines and newspapers that I could find listed anywhere online.  My next step was to gain local newspaper and state media coverage through satellite TV stations and talk radio.  With the help of the Why Islam organization, a book signing was scheduled, which will insha’Allah be covered by several local newspapers.

The power of social media is another avenue not to be forgotten.  From maintaining your own website to blogging and keeping a twitter and a Facebook account, these wildly popular social media outlets are a great place to promote yourself.  The landscape of book promotion is definitely changing.  Zoning in on your target audience and focusing your efforts on the audience you want to reach is key to creating a buzz around your product.

While it would be wonderful to imagine a world where your book speaks for itself, like any new product, that’s not likely to happen.  Speak up for your product and make sure that you blaze your own trail to get the word out there.  Whether it’s a book, a clothing line, a halal food chain, or any other product you want to sell, product branding and self-promotion are elements that can help you meet your marketing goals, insha’Allah.

Michael Hastings-Black On New Media

Michael Hastings-Black, Co-Founder of Desedo Advertising Agency, gives a talk on New Media at the 2009 American Muslim Consumer Conference.

Mohamed El-Fatatry Speaks About Muxlim

Mohamed El-Fatatry, CEO of Muxlim, talks about his company at the 2009 American Muslim Consumer Conference.

Breaking Down The Numbers & Properly Targeting Muslim Consumers

Shahed Amanullah, Founder of Halalfire Media, gives a talk on properly reaching out to Muslim consumers by breaking down and translating the JWT numbers into reality.

16 Creative Companies by American Muslims

Americans are creative and so are American Muslims. The creativity and height of entrepreneurship can be seen in the success of Google, Ebay, Apple, Starbucks, Kindle, IBM, Microsoft, Dell, HP, Amazon, GE, 3M, P&G, Boeing, Yahoo, Walmart and many more. Most of the young Muslims are second generation, their parents have struggled to provide them good education and foundation. The hard work is now paying off and the creativity is seen in many startups which is now shaping the discourse of American Muslims and their entrepreneurship spirit. Some companies are developing mainstream products, some are developing products focused on social responsibility and the demand which exists amongst American Muslims.
Here are some companies managed/started by Muslims. Only time can tell if they will flourish with the support of 6 to 7 Million American Muslims.

EDIT: A few more companies have been added to the list, as suggested on our Facebook page.

Islamic Finance and Sharia Compliant Investments

Islamic Clothing and Muslim Lifestyle

Digital Marketing

Halal Food & Travel

Franchise

Islamic Education and Arabic learning

Islamic Media and Entertainment Products

Other Suggestions:

Know of any other creative Muslim companies? Share them in the comments below!

Shifting One’s Focus From Getting To Giving – Bob Burg

Recording of Bob Burg’s talk from the 2009 American Muslim Consumer Conference

The Power of Platforms

 A best selling author, an international journalist, a CEO from a digital media company, representatives from corporate America, attendees as far as the west coast and England, a packed room of 225 people networking, learning, discussing their business ideas and exploring an untapped market. All of this converged on Oct. 30, 2009 under a unique platform, the American Muslim Consumer Conference (AMCC).

As individuals we can advance our causes, promote our businesses or build our own personal profiles while learning and meeting great people. The way we do that is by attaching ourselves to a particular platform. The AMCC is just one example of a platform that showcases the tremendous impact that Muslim communities have had on global business.

A platform, as defined by the Websters dictionary, is a body of principles on which a person or group takes a stand in appealing to the public. Platforms are very beneficial for those who want to advance themselves in entrepreneurship, charity, or community affairs to get involved with some organization or association which can help them broaden their horizons. Having a platform can help bring together others who share your ideas and passion.

Platforms can take the form of an organization, blog, website, business, cause or idea. They are only limited by your imagination. Platforms enable you to reach a larger number of individuals by having the backing of an entire organization at your disposal. Digitally, you can make your mark through social media, by writing or discussing your interests online. Being an organizer, officer, founder, writer, publisher, or author, you can gain visibility and credibility in a relatively short amount of time. So whether it is sports, politics, non-profits or business, platforms give you access to individuals you may not have been able to engage otherwise. They also serve well as talking points when meeting new people.

Platforms are also excellent learning opportunities. You can educate yourself on the business or cause you are working for, learn from others who may be more seasoned in that particular area, and meet many like-minded individuals. As many experts have stated, power or real wealth is dictated by the caliber of your network. Who is part of your network? How influential is it?

By having a platform, you can also build your own brand identity. Maybe you are a good speaker, organizer, or leader. Maybe you have a talent(s) that you are unaware of or waiting to unleash. That is why it is important to attach or associate yourself with a platform or platforms of your choice. There can be more than one. You can take a lead role in one and play an active participant in another. You can be “out there” meeting people at events or engaging them online through your blog. Look to the power of platforms to advance your ideas, objectives and causes. The world is always in need of good ideas, perspectives, thoughts and insights. Why not share yours? A best selling author, and an authority on networking wrote:

“Ben Franklin believed every person should be part of a social group, if not three. He believed a group of like-minded, achievement-oriented individuals could dramatically leverage each other’s success to do things otherwise impossible.”

— Keith Ferrazzi, Never Eat Alone

Please be advised to effectively research the platform you are interested in and make sure it aligns with your passions. Otherwise you may lose interest or you may associate with something that does more harm than good to your personal brand. So choose wisely. The last thing you want is to be labeled with something that elicits a negative reaction.

So with that mind, get out there, follow your passions, find the platform(s) of your choice, engage others around you online or off, and make this world a better place for all of us.

Event: Islamic Finance National Tour

The Islamic Finance National Tour was launched for two simple reasons: awareness and networking. It is a fair question to ask that: since the sponsoring companies all have websites, why bother creating a national event to showcase them and raise awareness? And finally why pick Islamic Finance as the specific topic to create a networking event around?

Awareness is not a one way street. Though some of the attendees may be aware at a high level of the various organizations being represented, this does not imply that the organizations are necessarily aware and attuned to the needs of the attendees. As these companies aim to provide a service where a gap currently exists, it is necessary that the audience feels comfortable with the services. Yes, wide ranging Sharia compliant products exist from mutual funds, CDs, real estate investment, insurance etc, but are we comfortable with them? If not, why not? What better platform than this tour to become aware.

This tour will afford a unique opportunity for attendees to be able to share their thoughts individually and collectively with regards to consumer Islamic Finance as it currently stands in America. It is our role as a consumer to shape and mold this nascent industry. This is perhaps the only industry that is rapidly growing and attracting attention as far as American Muslim consumers are concerned so it becomes imperative for us to steer it accordingly. In addition, despite the recent economic downturn, this industry has remained relatively stable which makes it more critical that as a community we come together, network, become aware, and forge next steps.

See you at an Islamic Finance event near you!

Sign up for the Islamic Finance National Tour: http://bit.ly/IslamicFinanceTour