Sheefa Pharmacy has found success with a formula that’s increasingly rare: personal attention from a staff who know and care about their customers. “People want to discuss their health and personal matters with someone they trust,” explains owner Amjad Abukwaik, “and that’s the reputation we’ve developed.”
A thriving South Paterson business since 1992, Sheefa combines the kind of personalized customer care people might have expected from pharmacists a generation ago with the latest technology and facilities. In fact, two years ago Abukwaik constructed a new building for his 20-employee business, expanding from a 1,000-square-foot store into 4,500-square-feet of new space. Located on Main Street, his building, the Medical Plaza, also houses an independent lab and physicians’ offices.
About 40 percent of Sheefa’s customers are of Middle Eastern descent, although Abukwaik points out that any successful business in Paterson attracts people of many backgrounds. “This is a very, very diverse city,” he explains. “It’s also a city friendly to independent mom-and-pop businesses like ours—not just to national chains.”
Sheefa’s success has led to multiple buyout offers, but Abukwaik has declined. “We are a community pharmacy, and we believe in giving something back,” he says. “We love and enjoy what we’re doing, and we’re here to stay.”