$60 million Office Complex and food processing plant opens in Auckland

$60 million Office Complex and food processing plant opens in Auckland

A new chapter in the growth of Service Foods and Balar Group
Venkat Raman
Auckland, December 23, 2019

Finance Minister Grant Robertson with the Balar Family (from left) Vidya, Stan, Pinal, Neil, Jaya and Little Princess Anika Balar

When Finance Minister Grant Robertson said that self-confidence, hard work, discipline and teamwork are ingredients for commercial success, he had a shining example next to him.

Mr Robertson was at the opening of the $60 million Office Complex and Food Processing Plants of Service Foods Limited and the Balar Group of Companies, located at 221 Ihumatao Road, close to the Auckland International Airport in the South Auckland suburb of Mangere on Thursday, November 28, 2019.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson speaking at the inaugural ceremony of Service Foods Limited

Good principles, practices

“When you listen to the story of Service Foods, you learn that there are good principles and business practices behind the success of this Company. I acknowledge that confidence, discipline and teamwork have been instruments of success of this Company and the Balar family,” he said, addressing more than 250 guests at the official inaugural ceremony.

Mr Robertson said that the way in which Service Foods Limited has grown from its humble beginnings in Christchurch is a magnificent example of commitment, dedication, honesty, integrity and sound management practices.

“While Service Foods is very well established throughout New Zealand, the opening of this new office does mark a significant new stage in the development of this company. It is unusual to see a company grow continuously year after year in the way you do and that is a tribute to the Balar family,” he said.

Nikul Balar explaining the operations of Service Foods Limited to (from left) Finance Minister Grant Robertson, Link2 Group Chairman & Managing Director Indra Sirigiri, Labour Government Chief Whip Michael Wood and Labour MP Priyanca Radhakrishnan

Among those who attended the inaugural ceremony were Members of Parliament Michael Wood (Chief Government Whip, Labour), Priyanca Radhakrishnan (Labour), Mark Mitchell, Agnes Loheni (National), prominent businesspersons from New Zealand and overseas.

Significant milestone

Earlier, welcoming Mr Robertson and other guests, Mr Stan Balar said that the opening of the new Complex marked a significant milestone in the history of Service Foods Limited and in the journey of his family for the past more than 40 years in New Zealand.

Service Foods Limited Founder Stan Balar

This state-of-the-art facility comprises a modern office complex from which the Company’s staff will coordinate all activities including purchasing, supply chain management, logistics, marketing, human resources management, finance and general administration.

“Parents raise their children with social, cultural and moral values, provide them with educational opportunities and envision them to be successful in their chosen career and profession. That was also how my wife Vidya and I brought up our two sons Aneil and Nikul. I am proud that they not only acquired the business acumen but also the management skills to grow the company multi-fold in less than nine years to become one of the largest companies in the food sector in the country,” he said.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson unveiling a commemorative plaque, watched by (from left) Nikul, Aneil, Stan and Vidya Balar

Progressive policies

Mr Balar said that Aneil and Nikul were also quick to acquire companies to strengthen Service Foods and put in place progressive policies and programmes for its growing complement of staff, customers.

“Today, Service Foods Limited is a national company with operations in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Napier, Gisborne, Tauranga, Hamilton, Greymouth and Westport.

We are also proud to be 100% New Zealand owned, family company, employing close to 600 staff including our Christchurch operations,” he said.

He said that the Balar family believes that the best means of growth comes from with and the best time to grow is every day.

“Hard work and success matter to this country and the business community is a part of that. We are genuinely value hard work and we have seen the success of that hard work today at Service Foods Limited,” Mr Stan Balar said.

Service Foods Limited Director Aneil Balar speaking

Neil Balar spoke of the challenges, describing them as opportunities to grow.

He also mentioned various stages of learning that he and his brother Nikul experienced in steering the fortunes of the Company over the past nine years.

“Every day, every stage and every decision was a learning curve,” he said.

About Service Foods Limited

Established formally in 1993, Service Foods Limited is one of New Zealand’s largest privately family owned and operated food service distribution businesses. The Company directly imports over 4000 products from over 20 countries and supplement this with 8000 plus locally produced products.

An exterior view of the $60 million office and food processing plants of Service Foods Limited in Mangere, South Auckland

As well employing about 600 staff, the Company operates over 125 trucks and has 11 strategically placed physical branch locations across New Zealand.

Service Foods Limited operates multidivisional foodservice branches, including processing of meat, seafood and vegetables. The Company is a full plate provider to the New Zealand foodservice industry.

Occupying 18,000 Sq meters, the Mangere facility also contains a cold storage of 70,000 sq ft, stated to be one of the largest in the country.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson at the warehouse of Service Foods Limited with (from left) Labour MP Priyanca Radhakrishnan, Labour Government Chief Whip Michael Wood, Link2 Group Chairman & Managing Director Indra Sirigiri and Nikul Balar

While Stan and Vidya Balar established and nurtured Service Foods Limited towards the path of growth and progress, their sons Neil and Nikul, supported by their wives Pinal and Jaya, are today in charge of the Group’s destiny, with a complement of talented, highly motivated and professional staff.

Aneil is a visionary, strategic planner and management expert, while Nikul is a marketing specialist, keen to explore existing and emerging opportunities to grow and diversify.

Both of them see Service Foods Limited and its allied group of companies well positioned to register accelerated growth in the coming decades.


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