Tell us a bit about yourself
My name is Kris Fade. I am an Australian-Lebanese radio host. I moved to Dubai eleven years ago from Sydney, Australia to help start a little radio station called Virgin Radio. Now, every single weekday morning, I host the morning show called The Kris Fade Show with Priti Malik and Big Rossi. It is the number one radio show across the country—which we're super happy about.
I have two beautiful daughters named Noushie and Kikki, age 10 and 8. I also run a little snacks business called Fade Fit Kids—my side hustle, which I'm loving, providing the healthiest snack option for kids.
How did you get started in media?
Back in Sydney, I did a bunch of jobs that I wasn't interested in. I used to be a barista, I washed cars, and I even started my own cleaning company. None of these really stuck with me. Somehow, I landed a part-time radio job where I helped in cleaning out the prize cupboard. The next thing I know, I realised I love this radio thing. I watched the presenters do it and started to understand what radio was all about. That's how I really got into the whole radio business. It is amazing how I went from that to running my own show - The Kris Fade Show.
How has your life changed since being in Dubai?
Since I moved to Dubai, my life has changed dramatically. I gained a hell of a lot of experience. I've had two babies, and becoming a father meant carrying huge responsibilities. When I first moved to Dubai, I only had around AED 10,000 in my pocket, and I knew absolutely no one. Thankfully, eleven years later, I have a lot more money now, and I came to meet amazing and diverse people. Now, I've got a fairly high profile here in this country, so wherever go, I'm always getting stopped—which I absolutely love. Life's fantastic.
What motivates you?
Oh man, I motivate myself, yes, but this might sound weird: I don't really like to push myself that hard. I feel like, as humans, we're really hard on ourselves—we are our own worst critics. But I like to make sure that I give myself an appreciative pat on the back when I accomplish something good. When I finish a gym routine for the day, I tell myself, 'Good job, Kris', 'Great job, you did it.' And I think that's really important. If you can motivate yourself, guess what? You motivate others.
What would you tell your 20-year-old self?
I'm only 21—so I'm not sure! [laughing] Patience is really important. I’ve got the word 'patience' tattooed across my left shoulder, and I believe in doing things with patience. Things will bear fruit in time, and for a reason. Focus on "yourself" and not on "you". Something that I live by as well: focus on yourself, and then they'll focus on you. Put yourself first, trust the process, and it will happen. But you've got to work hard. I would tell my 20-year-old self: just keep going.
Tell us about your ventures outside of media.
I have a few ventures going on. The biggest one is Fade Fit Kids, which is the healthiest snack option for kids. We're in over 400 stores and locations across the UAE. We're expanding globally, which is fantastic. We have three amazing flavours, solely made from dates. I started the business with my daughters Noushie and Kikki. One is the financial controller, and the other one is the general manager [laughs]. We're having a lot of fun doing it. Fade Fit Kids is located in some of the big names like Carrefour, Zoom and Amazon—and there's more to come. Fade Fit Kids will also launch more snacks—including the first sugar-free gummy multivitamins for kids, and this one's dropping very, very soon!
What do you want to do, or do differently for your daughters to what your parents did for you?
My upbringing was amazing because my parents are fantastic. In raising my kids, I do it differently in some ways. For example, I want to make sure that the girls can make their own decisions. Most of the time, I don't tell them what they can and cannot do. I let them know what's probably right and wrong, and then I'll let them make that decision. Growing up, my parents—especially my father—told us that if we get tattoos, we're not staying in the house. Interestingly enough, guess what we did? As soon as my siblings and I moved out, we all got tattoos. It's like telling someone what food to eat or not to—you can't have this, you can't have that. What do people do when they're out of sight? Well, they eat all the food they're told not to eat. So what I do with raising my girls is making sure that I give them the choice. I think giving them the power to make decisions is really important.
What advice would you give to someone who wants to give up their 9-5 to follow a passion?
Listen—if you're stuck in the 9 to 5 and you hate it, get a side hustle. Start an online business: what you can do right now on the Internet and with the power of your phone is fantastic—you can start earning on your own. I've done it numerous times, and it worked. You can start small, making small amounts of money at first, but your online business can expand very quickly. So after you're finished with your 9 to 5, you're coming home to work on your own business. You may also do your side hustle on your lunch break—but don't tell the boss you're doing it while working, of course [smiles]. Start something that you love. Once you start doing something that you love, believe me—you'll begin to enjoy life a lot more.
What’s that one quote that you live by?
They tried to bury me. They didn't know I was a seed.
I have this quote tattooed on the right side of my chest. This quote reminds me that you can be pushed deep down into the ground. People will tell you things that you don't want to hear: they can make you feel horrible and ashamed of yourself. But guess what—if you're a seed, what you'll eventually do under that darkness is to take roots and find a way to the sunlight above. Growth is inevitable. And that's something that I always commit to memory, an ideal I've always lived by.
And for those who live under a rock, where do we find Kris Fade?
You’ll find me, Kris Fade, every weekday morning from 6 to 10 on 104.4 Virgin Radio—or if you're in Australia, you can catch me on the weekends on Kiss FM. You’ll also likely to find me in a gym somewhere around the city, and make you grab our snacks, Fade Fit Kids. Order them now at fadefit.com, Amazon, Carrefour, Zoom, Tim Hortons and a bunch of other amazing locations. Make sure to check out KidZania at the Dubai Mall and Yas Mall because guess what? We’ve got them there!