Alshaya Group announces new partnership to evolve and expand Debenhams in the Middle East


Alshaya Group (‘Alshaya’), one of the world’s leading international franchise operators, is thrilled to announce a new partnership with boohoo group plc, the worldwide owners of the Debenhams brand since January 2021, and a leading global fashion eCommerce platform.

The deal maintains Alshaya’s exclusive rights to operate Debenhams stores and gives exclusive rights to launch a brand new Debenhams eCommerce platform in the region.

Alshaya opened the first Debenhams store in Bahrain in 1997, introducing the region to the concept of a department store focused on the needs of all the family. Today Alshaya operates 23 Debenhams stores in leading malls across Kuwait, KSA, UAE, Bahrain, Egypt, Oman and Qatar. The brand is unique in MENA for the breadth and scale of its offer, its premium store environment, and its constantly evolving product range across fashion, beauty and home. The new partnership will provide the region with a fresh, young, exciting family department store offer.

The new partnership represents an exciting evolution for Debenhams in the Middle East region. For the first time, customers in the Middle East will find the boohoo, boohooMAN, Nasty Gal and MissPap fashion brands in store. They will also be able to welcome back Burton, Coast, Dorothy Perkins, Karen Millen, Oasis, Wallis and Warehouse – brands that have all been progressively acquired and refreshed by boohoo group plc in recent years.

Alshaya will also offer customers the Debenhams experience online in the Middle East for the first time. This supports Alshaya’s broader strategy of bringing customers their favourite brands where they want to shop – in-store, online or a mixture of both.

Alshaya Group announces new partnership to evolve and expand Debenhams in the Middle East

John Lyttle, CEO of boohoo group plc said:
“We are delighted to announce a new strategic partnership for Debenhams, working with Alshaya in the Middle East. Debenhams has been an incredibly popular brand in the region for over 25 years so this is a great opportunity to build on the existing brand awareness, introducing exciting new brands and extended product ranges to customers. Alshaya has a great understanding of retailing in the region, are well placed to successfully drive the growth and popularity of Debenhams in the Middle East, and can leverage boohoo’s digital pure play expertise.”

John Hadden, CEO of Alshaya Group said:
“Debenhams is a highly successful and well-loved brand in the Middle East, thanks to sustained store and product innovation over 25 years across fashion, beauty and home. Today we are delighted to step-change that innovation through our new partnership with boohoo group plc, one of the UK’s leading digital retailers. In a new chapter for Debenhams, we look forward to enhancing customer choice by bringing exciting new fashion brands to the region and by expanding the Debenhams brand online. Alshaya already has the region’s largest digital footprint but I know the team are looking forward to learning from such acknowledged global eCommerce experts.”

Alshaya Group will progressively introduce boohoo fashion brands into Debenhams Middle East stores from October this year. The launch of in the region is planned for early 2022.

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