How did Brands For Less open 11 new stores during the pandemic?

March 25, 2021 | By RetailME Bureau

With the inauguration of 11 new stores in 2020 and 14 more in the pipeline for the coming year, Brands For Less (BFL) is one of the few retailers in the region that turned the crisis into a massive opportunity.

At a time when most businesses were penny-pinching,  BFL invested in a massive fulfilment centre, multiple stores, and of course, technology.

“We had to fast-track our efforts –what would have taken five or six years had to be achieved in 6 months. We invested in online platforms and fulfilment centres,” said Toufic Kreidieh, CEO of BFL.

“In the month of April, when everyone was at home and no one was spending any money, we bought a 27,000sq m fulfilment centre in Jebel Ali and we got it for half the price. The fulfillment centre is set to open on May 15th,” he added.

It’s online DTC operations, on the website, app as well as social media, gained fresh momentum from both existing and new customers in the past year. As a result, the online arm which made up just 8% of the business pre-pandemic, today accounts for 27% of the company’s turnover.

BFL also realised how customer habits and behaviour changed dramatically last year and decided to capitalise on it. First, the fact that people were becoming more cost conscious worked in BFL’s favour, because as the name suggests, its business model revolves around offering off-price branded goods.

Secondly, it worked around the inherent nature of human beings. Kreidieh explains, “By nature, human beings are hunters. So we give them that treasure hunt experience, where they come out victorious having bought something for about 20% of its original price. This is why we were able to grow so fast.”

This model doesn’t just entice customers to enter the store once, but the consistent promise of great prices ensures that they come back again.

Moreover, Kreidieh is optimistic as he believes that one trend that will dominate the immediate future is ‘revenge purchasing’. “We are extremely positive because we know revenge shopping, revenge travelling and revenge spending is going to happen,” he said.

As long as retailers continue to deliver on their promise of personalised shopping experiences, good value, and great quality, with the continued push towards a strategic digital evolution, the industry will thrive.

“At the end of the day digital is the future. If we, as brick-and-mortar players can generate 50% of our revenue from online sources then we are on the right track,” he concluded.




Previous Article Next Article



GMG launches four state-of-the-art food manufacturing factories

UAE-based diversified family business GMG has launched four state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities in 

Continue Reading

March 22, 2023 | By RetailME Bureau
Are grocery retailers Ramadan ready?

The growth opportunity for food and grocery retailers during the Holy Month 

Continue Reading

March 22, 2023 | By Rupkatha B
GMG retail stores enable customers to embrace the spirit of Ramadan

From value, variety and convenience to philanthropy GMG retail stores, including 16 

Continue Reading

March 20, 2023 | By RetailME Bureau
Maggi to launch its first-ever NFTs

MAGGI from the house of the Nestlé is all set to launch 

Continue Reading

March 15, 2023 | By RetailME Bureau
Saudi consumers to increase spending on grocery and household items

What does 2023 look like for consumers in Saudi Arabia? A Nielsen 

Continue Reading

March 7, 2023 | By RetailME Bureau
Union Coop announces mega discounts on 10,000 products ahead of Ramadan

Dubai-based food & grocery retailer Union Coop has launched its discount campaign 

Continue Reading

March 6, 2023 | By RetailME Bureau
This brand’s mission to make every day ‘fruitful’

Around eight years ago in 2015 a brand called Fruitful Day was 

Continue Reading

March 2, 2023 | By Rupkatha B
How Jumia is empowering a new generation in Africa

Technology has the potential to transform everyday life in Africa for the 

Continue Reading

March 1, 2023 | By Rupkatha B
As inflation bites…grocery retail

Looking at the regional food retail landscape, one can’t ignore the fundamental 

Continue Reading

February 28, 2023 | By Rupkatha B
V. Nandakumar, Director – Marketing & Communications, Lulu Group International

In the early 1970s when large-scale oil exploration activities started, the UAE 

Continue Reading

February 17, 2023 | By Rupkatha B
Waitrose unveils revamped Dubai Mall store sporting new features

Waitrose & Partners UAE has renovated its 45,770 sqft Dubai Mall store 

Continue Reading

February 16, 2023 | By RetailME Bureau
MENA online grocery market to touch $25 billion by 2030

The MENA online grocery market stood at $4.5 billion in 2022 and 

Continue Reading

February 15, 2023 | By Rupkatha B

Download Images RetailME Magazine