CEO Talks: Egyptian retail market driven by strong fundamentals

January 8, 2020 | By Rupkatha B

With a population of over 100 million, Egypt is a sizable market holding growth prospects for retailers, despite challenges of inflation and reduced disposable incomes.

According to real estate consultancy JLL, the retail gross leasable area (GLA) in Cairo stood at 20.45 million sqft by the third quarter of 2018. The projected addition of 2.7 million sqft before the end of 2018 and an additional 3.1 million sqft during 2019 will increase the city’s retail space to more than 25.85 million sqft by 2020. Add to this, the Shopping Centres Act passed by the government in May 2018, which eased legislation for the establishment of more new malls, further expanding the retail space.

Over the past 40 years since its inception in 1979, Egypt-based Baraka Retail Group has not only seen the significant transformation of the retail landscape in Egypt but kept pace with this evolution.

The Egyptian market is unique, observed Ahmed Ragab, group CEO of Baraka Retail Group. “In a massive market like Egypt, taking a single view of the retail market is difficult. The retail market has many segments, and the retailers must meet the needs of every customer segment. To do so, we – like any retail business – have had to overcome many hurdles around legislations, regulations and entry barriers.”

“From the time we started our family business, the retail dynamics in Egypt have changed dramatically. All along, our business has kept pace with the retail developments in the country, evolving constantly. Back in the 1970s, our family business started with a few successful retail brands; today, we operate six divisions – including fashion, jewellery, optics, make-up, furniture and concept stores. Currently, we have more than 22 brands in our portfolio with a 100-plus store network, occupying around 215,280 sqft of retail space,” he added.

The Egyptian market is indeed unique and dynamic. Ever since the shopping mall industry in Egypt started developing steadily towards the early 2000s – 2004 to be specific – substantial transformation was witnessed. Today Egypt has shopping malls of different sizes – from the mega mall to community centres – which are comparable to retail destinations in the GCC.

“As a retail group, therefore, we too had to think ahead of time to be able to add value to this kind of a market, to be able to create the right level of excitement in our business,” Ragab observed. “Hence, growth and diversification were central focus areas for us in 2019. We added four brands to our portfolio and opened 30-40 new retail outlets. What’s more, we have now added a new F&B division to our group.”

Transformation has been the central theme of Baraka Retail Group, especially over the past five years. “And transformation has been supported numerically. In our case, the business grew from 5 to 22 brands over the past five years, from 30+ to over 100 stores and the turnover almost increased four times, alongside maintaining profitability. These also indicate the strong fundamentals of the Egyptian market and the ability to absorb challenges – economic and political,” Ragan concluded.

To read the full article, subscribe to RetailME January edition





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