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.
According to a report by the United Nations, the fashion industry accountsFebruary 18, 2021 | By Shruthi Nair
The jewellery making industry has been under tremendous scrutiny over the yearsFebruary 11, 2021 | By Shruthi Nair
UAE-based Carrefour will become the first retailer in the region to offer new levels
The Organic Farmers’ Market is back in Bay Avenue for its 12th
UAE-based Lulu Group recently inaugurated its first-ever all-female staff store in Jeddah,
Jones the Grocer, the gourmet grocer and cheese retailer launches the Jones
UAE-based Al Maya Supermarkets is hosting a two-week food festival at select
Locally-owned supermarket Spinneys has launched its ‘Power of Plants’ initiative in the
Carrefour UAE has launched “Cookit Yourself” — a curated recipe box created
UAE-based Al Islami Foods, one of the largest frozen food companies in
Marks & Spencer’s plant-based range now offers over 25 vegan products including meat-free
World’s largest fully integrated online brand in fresh fish and meat e-commerce
Homegrown, organic and plant milk company, Koita has announced its expansion into
According to a report by the United Nations, the fashion industry accounts
The issue of climate change and the environmental crisis we are in
Unprecedented – that’s probably one of the most common adjectives for the
London based luxury retail and branding experts, House of Luxury (HOL), is celebrating their
Data presented by Fraîcheur Paris indicates that beauty products accounted for 22% of the
Tighter restrictions on hotels, restaurants, shopping malls and entertainment venues on account of
Retail Abu Dhabi, the dedicated retail platform of the Department of Culture
British fast-fashion retailer Primark says it has no plans to sell its
All hotels and restaurants have been directed to temporarily hold entertainment activities
The new Dubai Gold Souk is “very much on track”, according to
H&M has announced its collaboration with American denim brand LEE to push