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Boohoo to grow Debenhams’ Middle East presence through Alshaya Group partnership

By Huw Hughes

14 Jul 2021


Image: Debenhams

Boohoo is looking to build on the presence of Debenhams in the Middle East region through a new partnership with Kuwait-based Alshaya Group.

Alshaya, which already runs Debenhams stores in shopping malls, will have exclusive rights to operate the stores as well as a local e-commerce platform in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain, Egypt, Oman and Qatar.

Boohoo, which bought the brand and website of Debenhams for 55 million pounds late last year after the iconic department store chain went into liquidation, said the new partnership “marks a further step as the group accelerates progress integrating and scaling the Debenhams brand”.

Boohoo eyes a growing market

The partnership will see Boohoo Group brands in Debenhams stores from the fourth quarter of the year, as well as on a new local online platform across the Middle East from early 2022.

Boohoo CEO John Lyttle said the Debenhams brand has been popular in the region for a number of years, and so the partnership offers “a great opportunity to build on the existing brand awareness, while expanding the product ranges and brands available to customers”.

“This is a great step as we progress the integration of Debenhams and look at wholesale partnership opportunities to continue to scale the group,” he said.

Alshaya Group CEO John Hadden said: “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 e-commerce experts.”