Abco to open 30 stores in Mena

Abco is one of the main suppliers for Carrefour, Geant and Hyperpanda operating across the GCC and Mena region.

The Dubai-based Abughazaleh Abco Group, a wholesale distributor and manufacturer of clothes, shoes and fashion accessories, said yesterday that it would invest Dh100 million to open 30 stores in the region over the next five years.

Abco is one of the main suppliers for Carrefour, Geant and Hyperpanda operating across the GCC and Mena region.

The company also operates in South Africa, South East Asia, eastern Europe and Russia.

“Starting from 2015 the group aims to increase the total number of stores to 35 by 2020, ahead of Expo 2020,” said Midhat Abu Ghazaleh, the chief executive of Abco. “We opened four stores in the past two years. The new plan is to launch six stores per year on an average.”

The company also plans to venture online.

“Online sales are the future of the retail fashion segment, due to convenience and competitive pricing,” Mr Abu Ghazaleh added.

E-commerce across the UAE made a big leap this year, with online retail sales from mobile devices jumping 170 per cent compared with last year, according to Euromonitor International.

The research agency puts the increase down to a need for convenience and UAE consumers realising the purchasing power of their phones.

Retail sales through mobile devices reached Dh400m as more international brands are focused on the UAE, offering easier checkout and shipping options.

Abco said it had witnessed higher demand for apparel, resulting in a 24 per cent rise in sales this year.

“We increased staff by 35 per cent in 2014,” said Mr Abu Ghazaleh.

“Our operations span a large geographic territory, including the Middle East where the trading sector is witnessing a boom. We have ambitious plans for the coming period, with a focus on the UAE as a gateway to the entire region.”

ascott@thenational.ae

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Published: December 23, 2014 04:00 AM

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