Director - Marketing & Supply Chain
With a wealth of experience and expertise in the marketing domains, Arshat Baktygali, Director of Marketing and Supply Chain, Food Solutions KZ, plays a pivotal role in driving growth and innovation within the organization. A dynamic and results-driven professional with a deep knowledge of the Quick Service Restaurant business, Arshat excels in navigating brand growth, building efficient supply chains, and achieving business goals. Known for driving business growth and implementing strategic marketing initiatives, he is passionate about contributing to organizational success and leveraging skills to propel businesses forward. Let’s read more about him in this interaction.
Can you provide a brief overview of your professional background and experiences?
I began my professional journey at a small local marketing agency as a project manager. Since then, I've progressed through various marketing and advertising roles in different companies, gaining expertise in branding, digital marketing, event organization, below-the-line (BTL) activities, and strategic marketing with creative implementation. Throughout my career, I've had the privilege of working with prestigious brands like Henkel, SAP, Visa, Coca-Cola, and McDonald's. Some of my notable accomplishments include leading significant projects such as representing Nissan (a global sponsor) in Kazakhstan for the UEFA Champions League 2015, contributing to EXPO 2017 in Astana, and being involved with McDonald's during the FIFA World Cup 2018. In 2018, I joined McDonald's team (Food Solutions KZ) in Kazakhstan, where I have been serving as the Chief Marketing Officer since October 2019. Additionally, I hold a Master's degree in Innovation and Entrepreneurship from the University of Warwick (United Kingdom).
What drives your daily routines?
The opportunity to shape the future generation of industry professionals is a source of immense pride and adds a profound sense of fulfillment to my work. Moreover, I find excitement in identifying unique business opportunities and translating them into impactful, creative campaigns. The process of transforming insights into strategies and witnessing tangible business results is incredibly rewarding. It serves as a constant reminder of why I initially fell in love with the marketing field – the ability to turn ideas into concrete outcomes, which I find deeply gratifying.
How would you describe Food Solutions KZ as a company and its current market position?
Food Solutions KZ is a customer-centric organization dedicated to delivering top-notch food solutions to its consumers. In the quick-service restaurant (QSR) industry, we held the McDonald's franchise in Kazakhstan from 2016 to 2022. During this period, McDonald's under our management achieved an impressive second position in market share (TOP QSR) according to the 2022 report by Kantar. With 24 restaurants operating across 6 cities and a workforce of over 1700 employees, our growth and commitment to providing excellent service are evident.
What are the latest strategic initiatives you have implemented to expand operations and engage new audiences in the market?
As we transition from McDonald's to our new local brand, our primary focus is to successfully establish and raise awareness of the brand in the market. To achieve this, we have devised strategic plans aimed at ensuring a smooth and highly effective transformation.
One of our key initiatives involves completely re-engineering our supply chain. Given the current unstable geopolitical situation, having a reliable and resilient supply chain is more critical than ever. It serves as the backbone of our operations and significantly impacts our performance. Our goal is to create a supply chain that is agile, adaptable, and robust, allowing us to maintain operational continuity, uphold product quality, and meet customer expectations.
These strategic shifts are geared towards optimizing our operations, enabling us to continue providing excellent service to our existing customers while also attracting new customers. Throughout these changes, our ultimate objective remains unwavering – to deliver value to our customers and stakeholders, ensuring their satisfaction and success.
As a leader, what guidelines or methodologies do you adhere to?
My leadership approach revolves around three fundamental principles: continuous learning, open communication, and leading by example. I firmly believe in the importance of staying abreast of industry trends and constantly upskilling myself, and I encourage my team members to do the same. Emphasizing open communication fosters a transparent and supportive work environment where each individual's contribution is valued. Moreover, leading by example means that I maintain the same high standards I expect from my team, setting a positive tone for the entire department.
What is your envisioned future direction?
My vision for the future entails propelling the organization towards sustained growth and innovation while reinforcing our market position. I strive to lead Food Solutions KZ through the dynamic marketing landscape, leveraging cutting-edge technologies like AI in business, and aligning our strategies with evolving consumer behaviors. Ultimately, my goal is to ensure that our marketing efforts consistently deliver value to both our customers and stakeholders.
In the light of your strong experience within the industry, what advice would you give to the budding industry leaders?
In today's rapidly changing and uncertain world, flexibility is a crucial trait to cultivate. Operating in a VUCA environment demands a comprehensive understanding and practice of change management. Aspiring leaders must adapt quickly, effectively manage transitions, and guide their teams through the process.
Embracing technology, particularly Artificial Intelligence (AI), is paramount. AI presents unparalleled opportunities for predictive analytics, personalization, automation, and operational efficiency. It will become a 'must-have' for companies aiming to lead in their respective fields. Develop a keen interest in AI, grasp its transformative potential for your business, and implement it into your operations.
Never lose sight of the essence of marketing – understanding and catering to your customers' needs. Place them at the core of your strategies, ensuring that every decision adds value to them, whether a strategic pivot or technological integration.
Lastly, cultivate a continuous learning mindset. Stay abreast of the latest trends and technologies, and be willing to unlearn, learn, and relearn. This industry evolves rapidly, and one must evolve with it to remain a head.
Arshat Baktygali, Director - Marketing & Supply Chain, Food Solutions Kz
Arshat Baktygali is the Director of Marketing and Supply Chain at Food Solutions KZ, a renowned company known for its customer-centric approach and high-quality food solutions. As the Director of Marketing, Arshat is responsible for formulating and executing strategic marketing plans that solidify Food Solutions KZ's position in the market.