Marka sees potential for three more Modell’s stores in the UAE – CEO

Marka recently bought Retailcorp, which owns Modell’s, from state-owned conglomerate Dubai World for $60m



Dubai-based retail and hospitality firm Marka sees the potential for more stores under the Modell’s brand in the United Arab Emirates, chief executive officer Nick Peel has said.

“When we invest, we have a clear view of where we want the brand and the number of locations we want the brand to be. Marka sees a potential for at least three more Modell’s stores, four to five more Reem Al Bawadi outlets and two Cheeky Monkeys in the short term.”

Marka recently bought Retailcorp, which owns Modell’s, from state-owned conglomerate Dubai World for $60m.

The deal gave Marka a network of 15 sporting goods outlets across the UAE and the firm said that it was planning a regional expansion for the brand.

The firm also invested in British sports merchandise retailer Icons for Dhs 15.3m and opened the first UEFA Cham- pions League store in Abu Dhabi.

Peel added that the company will inte- grate Icons into Modell’s sporting goods store and the UEFA stores. Sports retail ventures will constitute 35 per cent of the company’s investments in the future, company officials have said.

The Dubai-listed firm is planning to close two to three more deals during the second half of 2015 at a cost of around Dhs 250m. This will be focused mainly in the UAE’s hospitality and retail sectors, executives said.

So far the firm has invested about Dhs 600m in retail and hospitality ventures in the country.

Marka, which was formed by a group of prominent UAE businessmen, registered a net loss of Dhs 8.7m in the first quarter of 2015. The company is aiming to be profitable by 2016, according to executives.