Majid Al Futtaim marks two decades of operations

RetailME Bureau

Dubai-based Majid Al Futtaim (MAF) is celebrating two decades of operations across the MENA, starting with the 20th anniversary of City Centre Deira, its first shopping mall development in Dubai and the first City Centre development in what today is the largest shopping mall network brands in the region.

This year also marks the anniversary of a number of MAF brands that helped transform the face of shopping and entertainment in Dubai including 20th anniversaries of French grocery chain Carrefour and family entertainment centre Magic Planet, 15th anniversary of VOX Cinemas and 10th anniversaries of Mall of the Emirates and Ski Dubai.

In 2014 MAF launched a new corporate brand campaign to reinforce with customers, partners and employees its vision ‘to create great moments for everyone, everyday’. This year the company hopes to build on that campaign through a year-long series of events, promotions, activities and surprises at all its destinations to commemorate its brands’ anniversaries.

“Over the last 20 years MAF developed a portfolio of shopping and entertainment destinations that are true to our ideals and values. We set out to transform the face of shopping by creating innovative new experiences that expand our world and inspire those around us,” says Alain Bejjani, CEO, MAF Holding.

MAF has developed retail and entertainment destinations, hotels and residential communities worth $12.25 billion in asset value. Since the opening of City Centre Deira, more than 1.6 billion people have visited MAF retail and entertainment destinations, including more than 250 million last year.

MAF signature destinations in the region include a 161,000-sqft indoor/outdoor water park in City Centre Bahrain, the largest cinema network in Oman operated by VOX as well as Lebanon’s first LEED Gold certified mall in City Centre Beirut. Most recently MAF announced a five-year, $2.95 billion investment plan in partnership with the Government of Egypt. The flagship project in that development plan is the new Mall of Egypt, a 4.9 million sqft facility that will include the first-ever indoor ski slope in Africa.

“While we are proud of what we’ve accomplished over the past 20 years, we have ambitious plans for the future. Our intention is to double the size of our business in the next five years,” reveals Bejjani. “While we expect the growth to come from both investment in existing brands like Mall of the Emirates as well as in market expansion in countries like  Egypt, everything we do will build on our commitment to innovation and enhancing customer experience. Whether we are looking at new entertainment concepts, refining our current offering or developing a new loyalty programme, the question we always ask is how this will contribute to our ability to create great moments for everyone, everyday.”