By Barnaby Chesterman
The Al-Futtaim Group of Companies-owned electronics superstore, Plug-ins, is set to further expand its successful retail operations throughout the UAE
Having enjoyed great success at its inaugural store in the Deira City Centre since 1998, Plug-ins, the multi-brand electronics superstore, has moved to expand its retail operations throughout all the UAE.The multi-brand superstore is a rarity in the electronics market in the UAE, but the Al-Futtaim Trading Group of Companies recognised early that retailers could no longer rely on brand loyalty from customers. It decided to introduce a store in the image of such giants as Dixons or Comet in the UK.The idea has proved very popular and the one-stop electronics shop now offers a wide range of the world’s leading audio, video, computer, photographic and software brands. Bob Thomson, managing director of the retail division of the Al-Futtaim Trading Group of Companies, believes the concept is customer-oriented. “At Plug-ins, everything is designed to maximise customer convenience,” he said.The success of the Deira City Centre store has resulted in an expansion throughout the UAE with six new locations opening. Alison Drewell, retail operations manager for Plug-ins, feels that the store’s very concept is its competitive advantage. “The Plug-ins concept has really taken the retailing of consumer electronics [in the UAE] to a whole new level,” she said.The latest store, opening in March, will be in the Marina Mall in Abu Dhabi. This will take the total number of stores to seven throughout six emirates. As well as offering a wide range of electronics brands, Plug-ins also claims to have knowledgeable staff that can help customers find the most suitable product to suit their needs.