How did you start your business?

I took over the company’s management in 2007 from the previous shareholders and moved the HQ from Germany to Dubai.

What were the highs and lows of setting up your business? High and Low Moments 

The process of starting back in 2001 was a lot simpler than the takeover in 2007. Although the start-up was not easy especially by a person who comes from a different industry and who promised to turn the company profitable in less than 24 months (which was done in less time), the takeover was met with the worst business years 2008 and 2009 during which we had to keep all projects on board and avoid any layoffs to the staff that was with us for years. I am glad it worked out well and I look back at it now with a smile!

What was your best day at work?

I do not have such thing as best day but the best remembered one is when we won the absolutely must get project against the competition that were absolutely adamant on breaking us off.

One of the most important thing in business is to open yourself and dream big. I do always say that we build our future with our own hands, so it is we who make a day to be the best. I work hard and I enjoy every second of it, as it brings me courage to move forward!

What was your worst day at work?

This does not exist for me, I hate to sound cliché but I do love my job.

How did you manage to fund or finance your business?

This is a long story but I will never forget the gentleman who gave me the best support in my life beginning 2008. He will always be a hero for me.

Who has been your greatest influence in setting up this venture?

Two persons in my life taught me a lot: my first boss in Dubai and my last boss. Basically I learnt to never do what they were always insisting on doing – this was the best lesson.

What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs when setting up their businesses?

I will not say that it is easy to set up and get the dream that you are looking for. The only advice I have is: ask for help when you need it! It is not a bad idea to look for someone you respect and ask them for their advice.

Describe any amusing or strange experiences, or interesting moments (an incident that happened that you will never forget) that took place while establishing or running your business.

I would like to say that interesting and amusing are business trips for me, where you can get full understanding of clients’ needs, to meet people with whom you will work in future, to imagine yourself on their place, and the customized offer.

Describe any challenges you experienced and how you overcame them.

I would say absolute dedication at all times and avoid mishandling of company staff, assets and funds. These are the typical errors that leads to breakdown of good companies.

Outline the reasons why your business succeeded and any particular factors that influenced your success.

I would say absolute dedication at all times and avoid mishandling of company staff, assets and funds. These are the typical errors that leads to breakdown of good companies.

Did you ever think you will be what you are today?
I always wanted to be who I am today, not in this line of business but in the same position.

Outline your future plans for your business.

In ALS, we always look into development. I want my company and people to grow, creative new opportunities and discovering new markets.

Outline any important lessons you learned along the way or ways in which you would have done things differently.

My lesson is pretty simple: not to stop learning or moving. As soon as you take a break or give yourself chance to stop what you do for a while, you, perhaps, could lose the biggest opportunity in your life. Never stop learning, always search for something you’ve never done, to be a better person tomorrow.

Describe the defining moment that made you feel certain that your business is going in the direction you want it to go.

The takeover in 2007 was the best moment in my career and the most difficult decision to make. I am glad it all turned out well.

Explain why you set up your business in the UAE.

In my opinion, this is the best place to live in and the most challenging places to be. If you make it here, you will make it anywhere.

Fast-growing, innovative, creative and fascinating – that’s all about Dubai.

What is the single most important decision you made that contributed to your business?

I again say the takeover in 2007 from the previous owners. It would have been a lot easier to look for a job and let things go down the drain but I could not, there was too much at stake and I would have never forgiven myself if I would have turned my back on it.

Anything you want to add or tell us?

ALS was built not in one day, but I feel that me and ALS have the same soul, sharing high and low moments, celebrating victories and analyzing the defeat. We’ve made ALS as a universe. And I want to see this Universe grow.


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  by Cristina Magallon
Tweet @UAEDNAofficial
LinkedIn: Cristina Magallon
Company Page: UAE DNA

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