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MENAFN - Khaleej Times - 05/06/2014
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(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) New stores by end of 2015 will increase the group?s retail presence to more than 550 and total retail area to almost eight million square feet.

murray bell and vipen sethi at the news briefing. — supplied photo

landmark group plans to open 50 new stores in the next 18 months in the uae and more than 25 of them will be operational before the end of 2014 group chief executive officer vipen sethi said on wednesday at a news conference.

new stores by end of 2015 will increase the group’s retail presence to more than 550 and total retail area to almost eight million square feet. sethi declined to disclose the total investment on the new stores but emphasised that it’s a significant investment.

“we have more than enough cash for our expansion plan” the group’s chief executive responded to khaleej times.

he ruled out any plan for stock market listing of the company and said: “we want to continue as a private company.” the group’s popular retail concepts include centrepoint babyshop splash shoe mart max lifestyle emax and home centre among others.

he informed that abu dhabi’s yas mall will have 25 new stores. the mall is expected to open in november 2014. rest of 25 new stores will be across the country he added.

the announcement was made ahead of the launch of three new stores at dubai festival city mall. the creek-side mixed-use destination developed by al futtaim group real estate has now opened doors to landmark group’s popular concepts centrepoint max and emax spanning 100000 square feet of retail space across two floors.

the group which already has 50000 employees will hire at least 2500 employees for new stores in the country sethi disclosed.

explaining the reason for the expansion he said the retail sector is booming. “strategically growing our presence in dubai festival city mall is an important step in our expansion plans in the uae. with the nation gearing up to host more than 20 million visitors in 2020 the nation’s leadership has a commitment to strengthen infrastructure and upgrade tourist offerings. as a retailer catering to the masses we also seek to simultaneously growing our presence across destination malls and community centres in strong catchment areas” he explained.

“the dynamics of dubai and the uae is such that it attracts a lot of visitors and people spend money here — both local residents and visitors” he added.

talking about the group’s online shopping portal he said that it would take time to pick-up as unlike europe people still want to go for shopping experience. this trend may come later on to this market. the company is ding a lot of investment on technology and integration he added.

talking about the group’s performance in other countries he said: “we as a group are still doing very well in gulf countries. next step would be africa and then east european countries.”

joining the news conference murray bell managing director retail at al futtaim group real estate said: “we are extremely pleased to add landmark group’s big box store concepts to dubai festival city mall. the landmark group is a key strategic partner as we work closely together across our regional portfolio of malls. the opening of centrepoint max and emax are much anticipated by our shoppers and we welcome these fashion and electronics offering to the mall.”

committed to growing its presence in dubai landmark group currently operates over 270 stores in the emirate where it enjoys the loyalty of over one million active shukran customers. in a bid to offer customers in the uae a truly omni-channel retail experience the group has integrated its loyalty programme shukran with its e-commerce portal landmarkshops.com.

— abdulbasit?khaleejtimes.com


Khaleej Times

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