By Daniel Shane
UAE conglomerate finalises deal to launch outlets of US fashion retail brand Abercrombie & Fitch in Dubai from next year
UAE conglomerate Majid Al Futtaim (MAF) has finalised a deal to launch outlets of US fashion retail brand Abercrombie & Fitch in Dubai from next year.
The deal comes on the back of MAF's announcement last month that it would start opening Hollister, another brand in the Abercrombie Fitch Co stable, retail stores from this year.
A statement from MAF did not specify when and where the outlets would be opening, but the company owns several major malls in the UAE, including Mall of the Emirates and Deira City Centre.
"The signing of another joint-venture with leading retailer Abercrombie & Fitch Co, reflects our demonstrated understanding of the region's evolving retail landscape," said Ahmed Galal Ismail, CEO, MAF Ventures.
"The Abercrombie & Fitch brand is an iconic label that will enhance Majid Al Futtaim Fashion's already established portfolio of brands, and cement its reputation as the preferred strategic partner for the world's most desirable brands."
Dubai is enjoying a retail and tourism boom with passenger traffic passing through its airport rising 13.2 percent to 57.6m passengers last year, overtaking Hong Kong International Airport to become the third busiest airport in the world.
The retail market has been boosted by shoppers from Russia, China and the Gulf. Emaar, owner of the world’s biggest shopping mall, said the number of visitors to Dubai Mall in 2012 increased by almost half a million people to 5.2m while the number of brands sold in its stores increased 25 percent.
Retail accounts for around 30 percent of GDP in the emirate, according to Standard Chartered estimates. Dubai is home to about 40 shopping malls.For all the latest retail news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.
My question--one that I'm sure every woman (and some men) would like to know--is whether the Dubai branches will have A&F's signature shirtless models at the store entrance?