H&M establishes franchise partner for Middle Eastern expansion

Hennes & Mauritz (H&M) has entered into a franchise agreement with Kuwaiti company M.H. Alshaya to open four stores in the Middle East this Autumn. Three will be in Dubai (two located in the Mall of the Emirates) and the fourth will open in Ibn Battuta. A sixth is also planned to open in the Marina Mall in Kuwait.

H&M has an international network of over 1,200 stores in 22 countries. "We are very proud to open our first stores in this fast-growing region with high fashion awareness and spending power," says H&M CEO Rolf Eriksen. "We are convinced that we can offer our customers added value through fashion and quality at the best price. Considering M.H. Alshaya's strategic retail presence in the region, we are confident that this partnership will provide a much-needed impetus to our growth plans in the Middle East."

M.H. Alshaya holds franchises for more than 42 international retail brands including Debenhams, The Body Shop, MAC and Starbucks Coffee. The group operates over 1,000 stores across 11 countries in the Middle Eastern region. "This is a much-awaited time for the fashion and retail industry in the Middle East," says M.H. Alshaya CEO Mohamed Alshaya.

"There is a huge market potential for H&M and M.H. Alshaya enjoys regional knowledge and retailing expertise. The wide assortment on offer coupled with the introduction of new garments into the store every day makes it quite a unique offering within the Middle East."