Photo taken pre-COVID: Omar Al Futtaim (right) with Dominic Lai (left)
UAE-based retail conglomerate Al -Futtaim signs franchise agreement with A.S. Watson Group, a global health and beauty retailer. Both companies have reached an exclusive franchise agreement to launch the flagship health and beauty brand Watsons in the GCC.
This is the first franchise agreement of A.S. Watson Group in its almost 180 years of history, and its first venture in the Middle East, adding to its established leadership in Asia and Europe.
With plans to open 100 stores in the region by the end of 2025, the first Watsons flagship will officially open in The Dubai Mall, on October 1; along with an e-commerce portal (Watsons.ae), and a mobile app called Watsons UAE, in addition to a Watsons loyalty programme.
As Al-Futtaim signs franchise agreement with A.S. Watson Group, Omar Al Futtaim, vice chairman at Al-Futtaim Group said, “As a local business operating across the globe, it is our duty to support and contribute to the economic growth of the region we belong while bringing quality and customer-oriented brands to our retail network. Our partnership with A.S. Watson Group is another milestone in our journey to further enhance both the UAE and the Middle East’s position in the world’s top retail destinations map, and we look forward to making this brand available across further locations in the region.”
The expansion plan of Watsons in the Middle East will see the opening of two outlets in Dubai Festival City Mall and Mall of the Emirates in the fourth quarter of 2020, followed by entry into the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 2021.
“We are delighted to bring Watsons to the beauty-savvy customers in the Middle East which is one of the world’s fastest-growing markets for beauty products. Al-Futtaim has impressed us with their proven experience and track record in quality management of retail brands. We are excited to partner with them to bring new offline and online beauty experience as well as numerous trendy brands to customers in the region,” added Dominic Lai, managing director, A.S. Watson Group.
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