Dubai, UAE, February 7, 2017: Majid Al Futtaim, the leading shopping mall, communities, retail and leisure pioneer across the Middle East, Africa and Asia, today announced it will be the key partner of the World Retail Congress for a second consecutive year. The 11th edition of the Congress, which is the world’s largest retail event, will be held in Dubai from 4 to 6 April 2017 under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, and Ruler of Dubai.
Alain Bejjani, Chief Executive Officer, Majid Al Futtaim – Holding said: “The World Retail Congress is the leading platform for networking and discussing critical factors shaping the future of our exciting, dynamic and important industry, while showcasing the best of our business and region to the world. We are therefore delighted to renew our partnership alongside Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry in 2017 and look forward to once again welcoming international retail leaders to Dubai in April.”
World Retail Congress 2017 will take place at Madinat Jumeirah and carry the theme of ‘reimagining the customer experience’. Across the three days of the Congress, more than 1,500 attendees will gather to hear from industry legends and thought-leaders including Chairman of Macy’s, Terry Lundgren and Former CEO of Richemont Fashion and Accessories, Marty Wikstrom as well as emerging retail disruptors from Soko, Lesara and Myntra. As part of the programme, Alain Bejjani, Chief Executive Officer at Majid Al Futtaim – Holding, will join other world renowned industry experts on a panel to discuss the ‘new era of experiential retailing’.
Majid Al Futtaim is part of the fabric of Dubai’s retail landscape, having transformed the face of the industry in the region just over two decades ago by introducing the model for integrated retail and entertainment. Dubai’s retail sector has since witnessed remarkable growth and, according to real estate consultancy firm CBRE, the emirate is now the second most important international shopping destination in the world after London – an accolade it has held for the last two years. According to independent research commissioned by Majid Al Futtaim, total retail spend in Dubai stood at USD 21.8 billion in 2016 and is set grow by a further 9.5% per annum (CAGR) up to 2021.
Since the World Retail Congress was held in Dubai last year, Majid Al Futtaim has continued to register significant growth of its own driven by the addition of several new hypermarkets, supermarkets and family entertainment centres across its geographic footprint. The company ended FY 2016 with a revenue of AED 29.9 billion, up 9% on FY 2015. Majid Al Futtaim has also made significant progress with its expansion plans across Saudi Arabia, Oman, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt, and will open Mall of Egypt in March this year. The mall will be home to the first indoor ski slope on the continent of Africa and the country’s first VOX Cinemas.
Ian McGarrigle, World Retail Congress chairman said: “We are excited to renew our partnership with Majid Al Futtaim and the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry for the 11th World Retail Congress. With this year’s event focused on re-imagining the customer experience and increased demand for retailtainment globally, we can’t think of a more fitting setting than Dubai and a more suitable partner than Majid Al Futtaim. We look forward to working together to make World Retail Congress 2017 the most successful edition yet.”
The World Retail Congress was founded in 2007 in response to retailers seeking a platform for senior leaders to come together to discuss the major issues and trends affecting the industry. Held annually, the Congress attracts leading industry stakeholders from retail, global economics, politics, finance and NGOs to discuss the challenges and opportunities in the global retail market.