House of Fraser Eyes Middle East

Plans first overseas shops
Posted February 24, 2010

House of Fraser (London) is partnering with Retail Arabia Intl. to open stores in the Middle East, marking the first time the department store chain has opened locations outside of the U.K. and Ireland, where it operates 62 stores.

Ceo John King says the plans are part of an effort to grow the department store brand's business, its brands and develop a multi-channel platform, both nationally and internationally. “We believe House of Fraser has significant opportunities in key global markets positioned as a premium department store providing our exclusive brands and concession partners entry into new markets,” says King. “We look forward to a long relationship with Retail Arabia International.”

Store locations under consideration include Cairo, Egypt; Riyadh, Jeddha and Dharan in Saudi Arabia; Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates; Muscat, Oman; and Doha in Qatar.

Retail Arabia, a retail venture of U.A.E.-based group Daud Investment’s subsidiary Daud Arabian and investment bank Gulf General Investment, has retail experience working with toys specialist Hamleys, Oscar de la Renta and jeweler David Morris.

Last week, House of Fraser named Robin Terrell to lead its ecommerce and international division.