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David Fox – passionate about Pakistan

David Fox’s successful investments in Pakistan’s vibrant telecom industry have kept him coming to Pakistan on a regular basis. David’s special fondness for Pakistan was developed by his good friend Hussain Haroon, the Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the UN.

He shares his views on doing business in Pakistan from the perspective of an international investor as well as the immense potential within Pakistan’s telecoms industry. Interestingly, he also talks about a miraculous new honey that has been developed with innumerable health benefits.
David had been initially involved in textiles retail which had been running successfully in London. But sensing the untapped potential within telecommunications and IT, David decided to venture into this sector. “I had come from a business that had been extremely supply led. When you are selling very high-end textiles, you are mostly selling to people who don’t need another suit but want it. So I firmly believed that I had the best English textiles retail business in London but the demand was extremely unpredictable and the overheads were very high.”
David was determined to venture into a business which did not involve the same crippling overheads as the textiles business. “That was what appealed to me about telecoms because with a very tiny team can run $20 million or $30 million operation,” explains David. He identified Pakistan as a lucrative market for investment in the telecoms sector. “I felt that telecoms was the right kind of business to go into and Pakistan has always been a very popular market for telecommunications because of the sheer number of Pakistanis in Europe, in Britain in particular and in America,” says David.
But does the volatile political situation perplex him as an investor? “It means as a foreign businessman you have to work together with Pakistani partners rather than putting your own infrastructure in Pakistan. Because if you have billions of dollars invested in infrastructure you have billions of dollars invested and suddenly a PTA decision renders you profitless,” explains David.
His partnership with WorldCall in Pakistan has been hugely successful and the recent acquisition of shares by Omantel has been a further boost to the business, “The recent purchase of the majority of shares in Worldcall by Omantel adds another dimension to our business. This is an excellent opportunity as we have always wanted to be viewed as the European arm for a company like WorldCall. We know the European market very well indeed.”
Despite the number of players in Pakistan’s telecoms market, David believes that there is still tremendous potential particularly within the rural areas. “The telecom sector still has a huge degree of potential, there is still room for rural telephony to be developed and improved,” he says.
David lives in Loudwater near London with his family, “I married my childhood sweetheart who I have known since I was sixteen, and we married at 22, my daughter was born at 23, my son was born at 27, and we have a fantastic Newfoundland., who is a great pleasure and joy to have around the house, even though the two cats we have hate her!”
His role model is his father who migrated to London from Poland in the 1940s. “He arrived at this country with absolutely nothing and he made success of his life, so he was a very fascinating man to go out and watch.” Another person who is very dear to David is the late Rafi Kachelo, “There are people you meet in life that make your life richer. He was an absolutely amazing man. He taught me some very expensive lessons. He taught me a lot about very expensive cigars, very expensive restaurants, and how not to put up with mediocrity.”
Life Mel
‘And thy Lord taught the bee to build its cells in hills, on trees and in (men’s) habitations….. there issues from within their bodies a drink of varying colours, wherein is healing for mankind. Verily in this is a Sign for those who give thought’.
(The Holy Quran 16:68-69)
David is expanding his investments in Pakistan, not through telecommunications or anything remotely related to it, but by bringing a newly developed honey to Pakistan called Life Mel. “We have a new company which we established last year which we think is extremely exciting and there is a great deal of growth potential in Pakistan which is honey,” says David.
Life Mel was developed by Dr. Alexander Goroshit who while studying in Russia, was treating a severe outbreak of cholera. Though the town was in the grip of a rampant epidemic, he noticed that bee keepers and their families were somehow immune to the disease. Fascinated by this unusual finding, after graduating from medical school, he devoted the next 30 years of his life to discovering the healing powers of honey.
Further research indicated that over the centuries beekeepers have discovered that the food consumed by the bees affects the properties of the honey they produce. Dr Alexander’s study of herbs revealed that the key properties are sourced from the leaves, stems and roots rather than the flower. Thus to create a honey product which contained these properties, Dr Alexander with a group of experts, developed a feed for the bees with the desired herb parts to facilitate the development of a honey bee product which contained the beneficial properties of a special blend of key herbs.
Dr Alexander moved to Israel in the 1990s and with the help of state funding, continued his research into the remarkable results of feeding bees different varieties of herbs. In time, he went on to develop different products made by honey bees.
Life Mel has been found to be particularly beneficial for cancer patients, many of whom have made a remarkable recovery after taking the honey. This is because Life Mel has an incredible effect on the blood and is therefore helpful for people suffering from anemia – an unavoidable side effect of chemotherapy.
 In fact, David was staggered by the potent effect of Life Mel on his business partner’s father-in-law who was terminally ill with cancer. His father-in-law had been sent home by the doctors as there was nothing more they could do and Ian went to visit him in America for what he thought were his last days. He took the honey along with him and after giving it to his father-in -law for about 10 days, he started making a miraculous recovery. “This was a man who was so weak that he could only get out of bed to use the bathroom and suddenly he was getting up better, he was walking better, he was coming downstairs, he was eating with his family, he was going for walks around the garden,”  explains David. When he went back to the hospital and had his blood tests again, the doctors were amazed that his blood was rapidly climbing back up to normal and he continued to improve every month.

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