b8ta introduces retail-as-a-service to the UAE

March 15, 2020 | By Rupkatha B

Launched in partnership with luxury retailer Chalhoub Group, b8ta has brought its retail-as-a-service concept to the Middle East market, its first location outside of the US – where it has a 30-store network. Its first stop is in the UAE at The Dubai Mall, located across the Apple store on the first floor.  Specialising in creating engaging experiences within the brick-and-mortar environment, b8ta is all about delighting customers with a wide choice under one roof.

For the first round, b8ta in the UAE introduced over 50% of brands and products from its US stores. “The business model itself – retail-as-a-service – is new in this region. There was need for an incubation period to introduce the concept and gauge resonance,” observed Patrick Chalhoub, CEO, Chalhoub Group. “And what we have seen is very encouraging; since b8ta opened in December 2019, we started seeing considerable interest on part of retailers as well as customers to be part of this unique model.”

The b8ta store in The Dubai Mall currently has over 80 products on display – the maximum capacity is 100. From chic wedding band lookalike fitness rings from Motiv to fascinating digital frame. There are eco-friendly Nanopresso and self-cleaning LARQ water bottle and purification system. What’s heartening to see is the presence of Dubai-born start-ups like Ryokō Bags rubbing shoulders with TUMI. The Beauty Nation corner and the Whirl Trio Curling Iron are impressive. There is also a corner to design your own fragrance.

Beauty, travel and technology are among the highlight categories in the store. “We have seen significant consumer engagement around the Whirl Trio Curling Iron. Beauty Nation’s curation is also working quite well,” Chalhoub shared.

b8ta’s dynamic model enables newness frequently. Leasing ranges from a week to a month and even a year. But the important criterion is to have an engaging story. “It could be Google testing a new product or a start-up showcasing its range. It could also be any brand from our Greenhouse incubator programme, if they offer the discovery, experience and engagement propositions,” Chalhoub observed.

A few words on b8ta’s fee structure; the brands pay a certain fee for space they occupy in the store. In this context, b8ta president, Phillip Raub emphasised on following a holistic approach, going beyond charging the brands a specified fee only for space. “Our ultimate goal is for the brands at b8ta to be successful in the long-term, to grow and expand. That’s why we create marketing programmes and organise in-store initiatives, all integrated within that fee.”

Quite easily qualifying as a ‘store of tomorrow’, b8ta is elevating the UAE retail market and has clear triggers for expansion. Commenting on what’s next, Raub said, “We are looking to expand across the entire region. The plan is to open more stores in 2020 in high footfall locations, within the UAE and the GCC.”

“Through b8ta, we have introduced something unique to the regional market. So far, our partners, brands as well as customers are happy with the level of engagement. They are looking for more stores. That doesn’t mean there will be hundreds of b8ta stores, but the regional market has an appetite for a few more,” Chalhoub confirmed.

Read the full article in the March edition of RetailME



Previous Article Next Article



Lulu Group partners with Amazon expanding grocery offerings to online customers in the UAE

Abu Dhabi based grocery retail chain Lulu Group has partnered with Amazon 

Continue Reading

November 24, 2022 | By RetailME Bureau
Food Tech Valley partners with Tradeling to boost UAE’s food ecosystem

UAE-government-led initiative Food Tech Valley – announced in 2021 by His Highness 

Continue Reading

November 17, 2022 | By RetailME Bureau
Lulu Hypermarket to open in The Dubai Mall in 2023

Abu Dhabi-based supermarket chain Lulu Hypermarket is all set to open in 

Continue Reading

November 10, 2022 | By Rupkatha B
Beyond Meat’s Q3 2022 results “disappointing”

Plant-based meat brand Beyond Meat’s financial results for the third quarter of 

Continue Reading

November 10, 2022 | By RetailME Bureau
Barakat unveils new biodegradable packaging

UAE’s fresh produce brand Barakat has launched bio-degradable packaging across its entire 

Continue Reading

October 27, 2022 | By RetailME Bureau
Pure Harvest CEO Sky Kurtz

UAE-based agritech start-up Pure Harvest Smart Farms has signed a Memorandum of 

Continue Reading

October 27, 2022 | By RetailME Bureau
Carrefour signed up as anchor tenant for Midtown Project

Carrefour, owned and operated by Majid Al Futtaim – Retail in the 

Continue Reading

October 27, 2022 | By RetailME Bureau
Grandiose Supermarket announces country-wide expansion plans

Grandiose Supermarket, part of Ghassan Aboud Group, has announced expansion plan in 

Continue Reading

October 26, 2022 | By Rupkatha B
100 years of Valrhona

The Valrhona journey began 100 years ago with a cocoa bean. Since 

Continue Reading

October 24, 2022 | By Justina Eitzinger
On-demand grocery delivery in 15 mins

Deliveroo UAE has announced the expansion of its rapid grocery delivery service 

Continue Reading

October 24, 2022 | By RetailME Bureau
Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri, Minister of Climate Change and Environment

The Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE) revealed that the UAE 

Continue Reading

October 17, 2022 | By RetailME Bureau

Abu Dhabi-based leading supermarket chain Lulu Group has appointed investment bankers Moelis 

Continue Reading

October 13, 2022 | By RetailME Bureau

Download Images RetailME Magazine