Retail City Puts US$ 100 Billion Retail Sector in Shop Window
International retail real estate investment & development event opens today with over 6,000 visitors expected over three days
Following the successful launch of Retail City last year, IIR Middle East, the organiser of Cityscape, the premier international property investment and development show, has today (Sunday, June 3) opened the doors to Retail City 2007, which takes place at the Dubai International Exhibition Centre (DIEC) until Tuesday, June 5. The event has been organised in direct response to the exponential growth of the regional retail industry which is set to more than double over the next ten years.
Naomi Koningen, Project Manager, Retail City 2007, commented, “According to a survey report released earlier this year by Retail International, 5.3 million square metres of retail floor space is already available and the retail sector is estimated to be worth US$ 100 billion annually. If the Bawadi retail development in Dubai is added to those figures, plus the 4.6 million square metres already under construction, around another 8.6 million square metres of gross leasable area (GLA) will be added by 2017.”
Retail City 2007 comprises an exhibition with a parallel three-day networking conference. The exhibition aims to bring together international retail property professionals to develop new joint ventures, exchange views, identify new investment opportunities and encourage retailers and franchises to set up shop in the Middle East. Visitors to the show will no doubt be eager to view the latest phase of the Dubai Sports City retail offering.
Running in tandem with the exhibition, the Retail City Conference will examine key insights into successful retail developments, reveal the untapped potential for retail real estate development and investment in the Middle East, determine how to remain successful in a relentlessly competitive retail industry and explore the latest retail trends. Delivering the opening keynote session will be Dr. Joseph Michelli, the acclaimed author of ‘The Starbuck’s Experience’ who will share insight into the success of the largest chain of coffee shops in the world.
Currently the four main drivers behind the GCC retail phenomenon are the cities of Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Riyadh and Jeddah, with Dubai leading the development with 1.3 million square metres. GCC retail space is set to double in just a few short years with a further 4.6 million square metres of GLA currently under construction.
However the Dubai figures do not include the recently announced Bawadi project. Just in its first phase, which is due for completion within 5 years, Bawadi will add 400,000 square metres of GLA to Dubai’s retail landscape and once fully built it will accommodate 4 million square metres of retail space.
Retail City will also feature the prestigious Retail City Awards, which recognise excellence and innovation throughout the industry, acknowledging outstanding achievements. The awards will be presented during a glittering gala dinner on Monday 4 June at the Fairmont Hotel Dubai.
This year’s event is being supported by Dubai Properties, Dheeraj & East Coast LLC, Saraya Aqaba and Mohammed Al-Habib Real Estate Co. as platinum sponsors. Grand Optics and Serafi Mega Mall, have been confirmed as silver sponsors.