UAE businessman Majid Al Futtaim passes away UAE businessman Majid Al Futtaim passes away
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UAE businessman Majid Al Futtaim passes away

UAE businessman Majid Al Futtaim passes away

Having founded the Majid Al Futtaim group in 1992, the businessman oversaw its growth into a massive retail conglomerate across the region

Zubina Ahmed

The retail industry lost one of it’s most iconic leaders – Majid Al Futtaim, who passed away on Friday, December 17. Majid Al Futtaim was born in Dubai in 1930s in a business-oriented family.

The Emirati billionaire businessman was born into a family of traders in Dubai. He started off as a bank clerk before founding the Majid Al Futtaim Group in 1992, one of the largest retail and real estate conglomerates in the region, with projects in Asia and Africa. The rich legacy he leaves goes beyond the shopping malls and retail empire he buil

Taking to Twitter, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, paid tribute to him, calling Al Futtaim “one of the most important merchants and senior men” in Dubai.

Having founded the Majid Al Futtaim group in 1992, the businessman oversaw its growth into a massive retail conglomerate across the region.

The group owns and operates 29 shopping malls in the GCC including Mall of the Emirates, City Centre malls, My City Centre neighbourhood centres, and five community malls which are in joint venture with the Sharjah government.

The company is also the exclusive franchisee for Carrefour in over 30 markets across the Middle East, Africa and Asia, operating a portfolio of more than 375 outlets and an online store.

In his message, Sheikh Mohammed also hailed Majid Al Futtaim’s “last decision to hire 3,000 citizens” – which was announced in September.

Dubai Crown Prince Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed also paid tribute saying: “we bid farewell to… a man who spent his life serving his country and his family.

Mr Majid was a visionary entrepreneur and a truly exceptional man who transformed the retailing experience both here in the UAE and more widely across the region. His extraordinary foresight and clarity of purpose not only set the company on the path to success, but also contributed towards the UAE’s global reputation for innovation and excellence.

Alain Bejjani, CEO, MAF Holding, said Majid Al Futtaim’s extraordinary foresight and clarity of purpose not only set the group on the path to success, but also greatly contributed to the UAE’s global reputation for innovation and excellence. His passing is a tragic loss to the company and the Middle East retail region. Our deepest condolences to the entire family and the Majid Al Futtaim team.

“Mr Majid  believed wholeheartedly in robust, world-class private sector institutions and the role they should play in driving sustainable economic growth and human development. He worked tirelessly on turning this purpose and vision into a reality that acts as a role model for others. His legacy lives on in Majid Al Futtaim’s business and culture, which shall continue to create outstanding businesses, innovative brands, and exceptional destinations and spaces that incubate happiness for our people and our customers,” he added.

The Majid Al Futtaim Group now has a portfolio of the leading shopping malls, communities, retail and leisure centres across the Middle East, Africa and Central Asia. He has been credited to changing the face of retail, leisure and entertainment across the Middle East, starting with City Centre Deira in 1995.  The mall was also home to the first branch of French hypermarket chain Carrefour and family entertainment centre Magic Planet in the UAE. Under his vision and guidance, the Group operates 350 Carrefour stores in 17 countries, 500 VOX Cinemas, Ski Dubai, Ski Egypt, Dreamscape, Magic Planet amongst many more under the Group’s portfolio. He was on the world’s top 10 richest Arabs’ list in 2021 by Forbes with a net worth of $3.6 billion.

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