Majid Al Futtaim eyes Gulf expansion for Abercrombie & Fitch franchise

Published May 11th, 2016 - 11:00 GMT
In 2013, Majid Al Futtaim signed a joint venture agreement with Abercrombie for stores in the UAE and Qatar.  (Abercrombie)
In 2013, Majid Al Futtaim signed a joint venture agreement with Abercrombie for stores in the UAE and Qatar. (Abercrombie)

Majid Al Futtaim, the leading shopping mall and leisure pioneer across Mena, has entered into a franchise agreement with Abercrombie & Fitch to establish a retail store presence in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain and Oman.

This expands upon Majid Al Futtaim’s existing relationship with Abercrombie & Fitch Co. Beginning in 2013, the two parties entered into a joint venture agreement in the UAE and a joint operating agreement in Kuwait for all the company’s brands, including Abercrombie & Fitch and Hollister.

With Majid Al Futtaim’s support, the American retailer that focuses on upscale casual wear for young consumers has opened eight locations to date in the Middle East, including the first ever Abercrombie & Fitch Fragrance Room and one of its most successful opening day sales for Hollister when it launched at Mall of the Emirates.

This franchise agreement encompasses the Abercrombie & Fitch, Abercrombie and Hollister brands. The first stores in the new territories will be in Qatar during the first quarter of 2017 and in Saudi Arabia in the second half of 2017, with Bahrain and Oman to be opened at later dates.

“We are excited to continue extending the company’s presence in the Middle East. We have seen significant demand within the last few years in the UAE and Kuwait and we look forward to helping Abercrombie & Fitch Co. grow in this market,” said Rajiv Suri, chief executive officer at Majid Al Futtaim Fashion.

“We expect there to be strong demand for our brands in these new markets, and we are thrilled to partner with Majid Al Futtaim Fashion to expand our presence in the Middle East,” said Arthur Martinez, executive chairman of Abercrombie & Fitch Co. “This arrangement represents our second major franchise partnership, as we continue to expand our brand reach.” 

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