DUBAI, 14th March, 2023 (WAM) – H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Dubai Media Council, today attended the opening of The Retail Summit 2023, which features prominent international brands and over 900 participants from around the world.
Day 1 of the summit was attended by Abdul Aziz Abdulla Al Ghurair, the Chairman of Dubai Chambers, Mohammad Ali Rashed Lootah, the President and CEO of Dubai Chambers, as well as Gary Thatcher, the CEO and co-founder of The Retail Summit.
H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed toured the pavilions of young and emerging global brands, organised on the sidelines of the Summit. The event offers an exceptional opportunity for brands to showcase their strengths to a global audience interested in exploring business opportunities in Dubai and the Middle East.
Sheikh Ahmed engaged with top global retailers at the event, underscoring the significance of The Retail Summit as a platform for strategic dialogue and discussion in the retail sector. H.H., along with Al Ghurair and Lootah, met with several senior representatives of leading global brands, including Jo Malone, Founder and Creative Director of UK-based brand Jo Loves; Michael Kliger, CEO of German brand Mytheresa; Chris Davis, Chief Marketing Officer of American brand New Balance; Simone Dominici, CEO of Italian company Kiko Milano; Rodney Lam, CEO of Dutch brand Daily Paper; Tommy Hilfiger, Chief Designer for Tommy Hilfiger, and other senior executives.
Al Ghurair said, “The Retail Summit is an important platform that brings together leaders in the retail sector, economic experts, and analysts to address critical issues, identify opportunities and challenges, and devise plans and strategies to advance the sector. The retail sector plays an important part in strengthening the local and global economies, including the digital economy, while also serving the broader goals of sustainable development.”
He added, “The world is witnessing exponential growth in e-commerce driven by rapid technological advancements and a significant shift in consumer behaviour. It is imperative for decision-makers and professionals in the retail sector to closely monitor these changes and leverage them to benefit their businesses and the end consumer.”
According to Al Ghurair, “Dubai’s economy expanded by 4.6 percent in the first nine months of 2022, reaching AED307.5 billion, with 24.1 percent contributed by the retail sector. In addition, Dubai received more than 14.5 million tourists last year, which further supported the growth of the retail industry. Experts project strong economic performance for the emirate this year, indicating an increase in spending and investment, especially in entertainment, tourism, and real estate, which is set to drive greater growth for the retail sector.”
Al Ghurair expressed confidence that “the retail sector, particularly e-commerce, will play an increasingly significant role in driving economic growth and diversification, supporting the objectives of the Dubai Economic Agenda D33.”
Thatcher expressed his satisfaction, saying, “We are delighted to have successfully opened the third edition of The Retail Summit with the energy, insights, and ideas of our esteemed speakers and attendees. Their contributions have set the tone for an exciting Day 2, and we are thrilled with the level of engagement and participation so far. We look forward to another impactful day tomorrow.”
The Summit, in partnership with Dubai Chambers, serves as an ideal platform for discussing future trends, opportunities, and prospects for the growth of the global retail sector. Held at Atlantis, The Palm, and Atlantis The Royal, The Retail Summit underscores Dubai’s leadership in shaping the overall landscape of this crucial industry through its pioneering technological advancements, unique digital infrastructure, and commitment to keeping up with key global developments.
Additionally, the Summit provides attendees with a unique opportunity to hear from major global retailers and over 75 speakers and international experts across more than 30 sessions covering a diverse range of relevant topics.
The event featured an unparalleled agenda and an impressive line-up of both locally and internationally renowned retailers, with two streams focusing on critical issues within the global retail industry. Industry professionals from top companies such as Tommy Hilfiger, Chalhoub Group, 6thStreet, AWWG, Fred Segal, Magrabi, Apparel Group, Amazon, Sultan Center Group, Alsulaiman Group, Papa John’s, Majid Al Futtaim, AllSaints, Adyen, Vogue Business, MyWardrobeHQ, Copenhagen Cartel, Jo Loves, The Latest, Harvey Nichols, and David Gandy Wellwear were in attendance.
The 2023 programme was centred around three key pillars: sustainability, customer engagement, and new technologies. The event featured 31 sessions and 18 hours of curated content, including keynote presentations on Cultivating Communities, Company Culture, and Customer Centricity. The agenda was customisable and delivered through a mix of TED-style talks, fireside chats, and animated panel discussions, providing attendees with actionable takeaways to add business value.
The Women in Retail reception on 14th March provided an ideal setting for attendees to hear from a panel of inspirational women leaders in the industry, including Halla Al Kassm, Founder & Chairwoman of Carina Wear, Khadija Oubala, CEO of Sultan Center Group, and Jo Malone CBE, Founder & Creative Director of Jo Loves. The event featured a range of thought-provoking experiences, including tailored sessions and focused discussions.