Emax to invest Dh 250m to open 35 more stores in UAE
Consumer electronics retailer Emax is investing Dh250 million in the next two-and-a-half years to open around 35 stores across five Gulf countries.
The company has 67 stores in the Gulf, out of which 30 are in the UAE, and on track to achieve 100 stores by 2017.
Despite a slowdown in the UAE economy due to low oil prices and low consumer confidence, Neelesh Bhatnagar, CEO at Emax Electronics, told Gulf News that the consumer electronics industry is not heading for a slowdown and there is no “cause of concern” at all.
"We are here to gain more market share and become a main player in the consumer electronics industry. The slowdown in tourist inflows is going to be in the short term, but we are here for long term. We have seen many ups and downs but overall we believe in the region, especially the UAE," he said.
“We were growing at a consistent rate of 28 per cent year-on-year growth in the last five years but this year the growth has slowed down to 16 per cent,” he said.
Quoting a market statistics company GfK, he said the UAE consumer electronics market is growing around five per cent.
To counter the slow profit margins, the retailer had started a brand distribution network. It now distributes around 18 brands in the region.
"We get better margins by selling our own products. The UAE's consumer electronics market is set for growth with demand for goods and appliances likely to remain robust," he said.
He feels that Dubai Shopping Festival will be a game changer and will attract tourists from other Gulf and European countries, and propel the industry.
Bhatnagar said that much of the growth is to come from Saudi Arabia in the next two years due to its size and population. It has 23 stores in the kingdom. “We have a long way to catch up in Saudi Arabia. There are 45 cities in which the Landmark Group [parent group] is operating. Emax is operating only in 11 cities. There are no power retailers in many of the smaller cities,” he said.
In the UAE, Emax is planning to open 10 new outlets in the next two-and-a-half years.
"We will be opening six new stores in Qatar. We still see lot of potential in the Gulf countries before spreading our wings to other regions as we are still not present in the Kuwait," he said.