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Wed 26 Nov 2008 10:56 AM

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Alshaya celebrates family victory

Franchise operator behind big brands including Mothercare, Debenhams, River Island and Boots honoured.

Kuwaiti retail franchisee M.H. Alshaya Co. has clinched the Best Family Business of the Year title at the Middle East Business Achievement Awards.

M.H. Alshaya Co., the franchise operator of more than forty international retail brands, received the award in recognition of its successful long term growth, the way it has managed the relationship between family and business, its dynamic contributions to the community and industry, as well as for its innovative practices and strategy.

The award was received on behalf of M.H. Alshaya Co. by Ayman Alshaya. Founded nearly 120 years ago, the Alshaya group is now being steered by the fourth generation to be involved in the family business. The company has built a significant portfolio managing retail franchises since opening its first Mothercare store in 1983 in Kuwait, and it currently operates brands including Starbucks, The Body Shop, Foot Locker, Mothercare, Debenhams, River Island and Boots.

This year marks the 25th anniversary of the establishment of its retail division, which now has 1500 stores, more than 15,000 employees and operates in 16 markets throughout the Middle East, Central Europe, Turkey and Russia.

“To be nominated for the Middle East Business Achievements Awards is a prestigious accolade for any business but we are especially pleased to win the family business category as it recognizes the role we play in providing jobs and livelihoods for so many, while also serving the community’s retail needs,” said Mohammed Alshaya, executive chairman of M.H. Alshaya Co.

“While we are a company with truly international ambitions, we are a family business at heart, with our success lying in strong family values and traditions. Awards like this bring recognition to the importance of family businesses in the region; they are an encouragement to strive harder and to continue our contribution to this region’s economy,” he added.

Alshaya said the company considered itself to be innovative in its approach to developing businesses while generating successful partnerships.

“We have a team of professionals drawn from a multi-cultural background who understand our traditional values, our innovative outlook and desire to expand internationally. We also take our social responsibilities seriously and encourage nationals in GCC countries to explore careers in retail through our internship and entry level programmes," said Mr. Alshaya.

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