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 <<CityNews Main Send Flowers to India!

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Georgia Retailers Association Organizes Valentine’s Party


Georgia Retailers Association (GRA) organized its first Membership Drive with a glitzy Valentines Party at the Ashiana Banquet Hall Global Mall on Friday, February 13. The gala event was attended by the community’s leading wholesale and retail business owners and service professionals and was graced by the presence of Chief Guest, Mr. Ron Thompson, (Thompson & Singer, P.A).

While the guests were intermingling among each other and enjoying the tasty snacks, Atlanta’s well known accomplished musician, Tanweer Mian (Concerts by Tanweer Mian)) entertained them with popular Bollywood sizzlers like Haule Haule; jabse tere naina; Chand Sifarish, to name a few.
Composed and cheery, Sanah Sayani, in a sparkling light green dress, greeted all and invited Alyzza Ukani, a Parkview High School student on stage, who sang the National Anthem in a crisp and resounding voice.
Introducing the President of GRA, Shaukat Sunny Sayani, Sanah described him as a seasoned entrepreneur with a wealth of business experience accumulated over the years through his wide travels and meetings with many business representatives. Recently, he even launched the hottest and highly popular desi radio station Bollywood Beats 1040 AM in Georgia, she said. Shaukat Sunny Sayani said that he was very happy to see the banquet hall filled with a lively gathering and wished them all a happy Valentine Day. “Majority among you have been our loyal and long-time customers so now the Associates representing the ‘Wholesalers’ have decided to give back to you.” He introduced the GRA Associates as they came on the stage amidst thunderous applause:Vice President Monty Hudda ; Executive Officer Mihir Desai; Executive Officer/Hon. Secretary Zul Issani; Treasurer Hiren Desai; Directors:- Anand Acharya ;Shabir Isani;Mamud Dhanani;Ashish Patel;Balbir Singh; Salim Panjwani;Kanaiyalal Patel ;Rafiq Khoja and Mohamed Sohani.
Finally, Monty Hudda formally introduced The President of GRA, Shaukat Sunny Sayani.

Chief Guest, Ron Thompson from Henderson, N.Carolina has earned an MBA, JD (Hons) and LLM. He is actively volunteering with Habitat for Humanity and Big Brother, Big Sister humanitarian projects. In his brief keynote speech, Thompson said, “It is great to be here and celebrate with you all tonight. I have often wondered what constitutes great things. Van Gogh said,’ Greatness is putting small things together.’ Mother Teresa said, ‘It is taking small things and doing it with love’ Hegel, the philosopher said, ‘Anything you do with enthusiasm is a great thing’ And Ralph Waldo Emerson said, ‘Anything you do with passion’. Well, after 30 years of business and voluntary work, I feel any of us can do great things and be part of it. We need a goal. In GRA Associates, I have seen passion and enthusiasm to achieve their goal. They have faced many challenges but they have persevered and succeeded in forming GRA and I am proud to be a part of GRA".

GRA Vice President Monty Hudda has been an Atlanta resident for over 20 years. Affable and zesty Hudda has been running a wholesale business for 15 years. He has also played a big role in the entertainment industry running a cinema and inviting Bollywood stars like Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan to perform in Atlanta. In his speech, Hudda gave a brief history of GRA, saying,” We thought of repaying the retailers for their gratitude and sincerity over the years. As a token of our appreciation we formed GRA. Our mission is to maximize sales and profitability by negotiating group contracts with manufacturers, suppliers, distributors, and professional service providers. Any retailer in Georgia can join irrespective of race, religion, color or ethnic origin (applause) and reap the benefits of unity under the GRA umbrella. The directors are committed to bring excellent deals. We request members to sign for the deal and comply with vendor requirements for the deal. Though not mandatory, the more deals you participate in, the better rewards you will get. You will be informed of new deals through a copy of GRA News which will be mailed with your welcome package. At present we have over a thousand members. The membership fee is $95 per year and first year membership is free. There is no obligation to renew your membership,” he said. He then went on to read the List of Vendors and potential Vendors which was simultaneously relayed on two giant screens adjoining the stage.

Dr Narendra Gupta is a well known and recognized nephrologist in the medical community. He is also a visiting Asst. Emory Medical University and a community activist. Citing interesting example of a rose and thorn, he stressed the need for living in harmony and unity. “Please remember the adage ‘united we stand divided we fall’” he said and continued, “This is a very big moment for GRA. The economy is in a recession and this is an opportune moment to come together as it will be a win-win situation for all,” he exhorted.

Anand Acharya graduated in Mumbai and earned his MBA from the University of Texas. He informed the gathering about the (i) Membership process; (ii) Rebate process and (iii) Vendor Compliance process.
Mihir Desai hails from Mumbai and brings his vast business expertise through many years in business, to GRA as an Executive Officer. He is actively involved in building solid relationship between convenience store owners and vendors. Mr. Desai thanked all for attending and wished them a happy Valentine Day. He also thanked Chief Guest Ron Thompson for his insightful speech; he further thanked Dr.Narendra Gupta for his laudatory remarks and support to GRA. 

Sanah thanked Moiz Surani, Aziz Panjwani and Vaidehi Joshi and requested all to enjoy the sumptuous dinner and later Valentine Day dance. Tanweer Mian and Kavita entertained the guests with more Bollywood hits.
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