Sustainability in the Islamic Economy

Connecting the dots
visual courtesy:

For those of us involved in the dual industries of Islamic finance & halal, we are aware of the substantial growth in both industries.

In their respective ‘silos’ both industries, individually, keep shattering growth forecasts!

Yet the oft spoken about convergence of the two industries is, tangibly, yet to occur!  Quoting from the ‘state of the Islamic economy’ report–In an analysis of private equity, venture capital deals or mergers and acquisition tracked by Zephyr, a global deals data provider, only 17 completed transactions relating to Halal food-related companies are reported with the seven disclosed deal amounts adding to $22 million only.” And this is only for Halal food!

The Global Islamic Economy summit (organized by Dubai Chamber of Commerce & Thomson Reuters in Nov 2013) was, perhaps, the first and only organized meet of the two industries (in my opinion) where there was researched data and discussion on how the opportunities in the Islamic Economy can actually be utilised for:

  1. Benefiting a country’s national economy
  2. Benefiting both the dual industries (of Islamic Finance & Halal)

Leading to improvement in the global Muslim community, global economy & humanity as a whole.

The report —State of the Global Islamic Economy 2013 was published at this summit. This report, a first of its kind, was jointly undertaken by Thomson Reuters & Dinar Standard.

It’s an absolutely goldmine of information, highlighting specific business opportunity areas! Whilst the report highlights growth segments, emerging trends, business potential and provides a very comprehensive backdrop

Visual Courtesy: State of the Islamic Economy report by Thomson Reuters & Dinar Standard
Visual Courtesy: State of the Islamic Economy report by Thomson Reuters & Dinar Standard

with going-forward strategic solutions, for the dual industries of Islamic Finance & Halal  to go mainstream by using the global Muslim community as a starting base, what appears to be missing is a point-of-view on the sustainability aspect.

Sustainability that enables organisations, in the dual industries, to undertake strategic business growth based on achieving short-term profitability coupled with long-term beneficial impact on the communities their brands are involved with.

In sum, this means approaching the  growth opportunity ground-up.

Approaching sustainability ground-up means having to look at:

  1. Leadership
  2. Processes
  3. People
  4. Communication

Topics that have had very little exposure in terms of  cross-industry discussions & development of concrete action plans. Given the rising consumer demand, for authentic engagement with brands, perhaps, industry leaders would now explore these topics in-depth.

This would aid, not only the organisations currently making up the dual industries but those in the periphery, to come up with measurable, long-term business plans. Plans that deliver both shareholder & community value whilst ensuring the long-term sustainability of the businesses.