Souqs to Malls
The future of global retail growth in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) looks promising as it is among the fastest growing regions for retail. The retail sectors in these countries are evolving at differing rates, with a very well developed and two-tier retail landscape in the Gulf countries, in relation to other regional countries. The 2012 Euromonitor report forecasts that the UAE will almost double its retail growth to record the best performance in 2013 – with Dubai retaining its lead as the most mature market. The UAE will continue to attract foreign investment and interest because of a strong economy, stable political environment and reputation as a trade and financial hub in the Arab world. Saudi Arabia and Algeria are also expected to show encouraging performance due to high oil prices and consistent consumer demand. Tunisia, Morocco, Syria and Egypt are likely to struggle because of an uncertain political future and weak tourism demand.
The economic challenges of the past few years have changed the landscape of the retail market in the MENA region, with a positive outlook on its future: underperforming centres are being turned around by tapping into new trends and the older malls are being given a facelift in order to appeal to the target audience. All in all, the MENA countries will continue to drive the retail landscape due to strong demand from high net worth individuals (HNWI), an increase in disposable incomes, organic growth and continued modernization of the retail landscape. The Middle East is following much the same development as the retail sector has experienced in Europe since the mid-1970s. Organized retailers and large retail formats at the one end and discounters at the other end of the spectrum are increasing their market share at the expense of smaller independent retailers and family businesses.
Souks to Malls: Retail evolution in the MENA region offers a historical overview of the tremendous transformation of the retail market across the MENA region in the last few decades. Offering an insight into the retailing industry, the book highlights the diversified development of the retail landscape across the region based on consumer shopping patterns and emerging trends. The evolution line is traced through a pictorial tour of the development from traditional souks and small, independent stores through to ultramodern shopping centres and malls. The leading companies and brands are identified, illustrating how the market is set to change, the criteria for success, the future growth opportunities, the evolving market trends and consumer needs, as well as the strategies used in all countries of Middle East and North Africa.