The new World Trade Center Mall opened in Abu Dhabi this week, with more than 20 restaurants and 160 stores including the first House of Fraser department store outside the UK. The mall, the third new one to open in Abu Dhabi in three months, features several other new-to-the-market brands including Karen Millen, Missoni, PF Chang’s and Nando’s.
UK discount apparel chain Primark plans to fight to close a recently opened copycat store in Dubai, which bears its name and purports to sell its branded goods, the company said. "Primark does not operate any stores there and this is not, therefore, a legitimate Primark store."
Dubai Holding Group, the company behind Gerard Darel, Promod and Zara in Abu Dhabi, is planning to open 11 stores in the Yas Mall in Abu Dhabi when it opens in a couple of years. "We are not one of the big machines. We are a small retailer but we have part of the market and we like to compete. You don't necessarily have to be a big fish to compete," according to Jean-Michel Bolly, the group retail manager.
Nishat Linen, a clothing manufacturer and retailer based in Pakistan, is dipping its toe in the international marketplace by opening shop in Dubai Festival City. Nishat Linen is planning to open six outlets in the Emirates by the end of 2011 and 25 stores in the region by the end of 2012. "This is our first move outside Pakistan and we want to build a business here to launch to the rest of the world," said Ahmed Jahangir, executive director of Nishat.
A Euromonitor report says sales of candy and chocolates in the Gulf region could increase 16% by 2014 as economic recovery continues in the region and as a wider range of premium confectionery becomes available.