Bordering Denver on the east is a city considered the most ethnically-diverse in Colorado due to its growing immigrant population. With this influx has come increased demand for authentic Middle Eastern and African products, halal meats and hookah products.
Brothers Mohamed and Yasir Elradi, and their cousin Saleh Musaid, all of whom emigrated from northern Africa, saw an opportunity and purchased the empty Aladdin Market in 2008. Since then, they have successfully stocked their shelves with food, staples, spices and hard-to-find ingredients from Morocco, Iraq, Sudan, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and beyond. Aladdin Market also serves the religious needs of their customers by providing select produce and fresh Halal meat which is humanely slaughtered according to Islamic law.
Colorado Enterprise Fund involvement
To upgrade and stock their international grocery store, Mohamed Elradi first sought funding from local banks, as well as community organizations supporting Colorado’s refugee community. Being new to the area and business, he and his partners didn’t have the track record banks desired for business loans. Mohamed was referred to Colorado Enterprise Fund (CEF) which provided financing to expand store inventory and equipment. He also tapped into CEF's Business Advisory Services (BAS) team of consultants for assistance with his marketing efforts.
Today, Aladdin Market offers the largest selection of food and household products in the Denver area to meet the needs of its Middle Eastern and African customers. Mohamed and his cousin Saleh, who is in charge of day-to-day operations, dream of selling their unique collection of foods and staples online as well.
"We are known for our extensive products from all over the Middle East and for our great customer service,” added Mohamed. “We would like to expand our business to better serve these different cultures."