BinHendi Enterprises, one of the biggest and oldest retailers in the Emirates, is embarking on an ambitious expansion plan to become the largest operator of franchise stores in the Gulf.
The company is looking to add as many as 100 stores and restaurants across the GCC over the next five years.
The group, which was founded in 1973 in Dubai, is the local partner, or franchisee, for a number of fashion brands, including Hugo Boss, and a host of food and beverage outlets, such as Second Cup.
Mohi-Din BinHendi, the president and founder of the group, said the company was launching new brands in the UAE and planned to begin sub-franchising its international names across the region.
"Eventually we will be the biggest franchisors in the Gulf," he said.
BinHendi joins a number of other major retailers in adding stores and bringing new brands to their portfolio as the sales tills keep ringing.
Consumer spending has improved and a record number of tourists are visiting the UAE.
Jashanmal Group has added LK Bennett, Bally and Kate Spade to its retail operations in the past year, opening stores throughout the UAE. Landmark Group has signed up to open its brands, such as Centre Point, Babyshop and Splash, in new malls in both Abu Dhabi and Fujairah.
"Retail has been very good for us," said Mr BinHendi.
"The influx of tourists in Dubai and the UAE in general has really made this place a great destination for many tourists and GCC families that come here to spend a long weekend."
He added the group's sales had increased by 12 to 14 per cent so far this year, compared with the same period last year, and that revenues ran into hundreds of millions of dirhams.
Currently, BinHendi manages a number of luxury names, including Billionaire Italian Couture, Paul and Shark, Zilli, Miss Sixty, Nicole Farhi and other fashion brands.
In food and beverage, it runs Japengo cafes and restaurants, Ruby Tuesday, Cafe Havana and Bella Donna in the Dubai International Financial Centre.
Mr BinHendi, who is also chairman of the Retail Business Group, a Dubai trade body, is considering franchising restaurant brands in other countries in the Gulf.
"We are in the process of franchising in Oman, Syria and also Saudi Arabia," he said.
The company recently launched a new food concept called Extreme Shawarma in Ibn Batutta mall and plans to open 50 outlets in the Gulf over the next three years.
It is also set to open an Emirati-themed cafe called Khan Chai, that Mr BinHendi said was named after the term for a place where old communities would meet and drink tea.
"We are adding many more brands that we have not yet finalised," he said.
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