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Souqextra! Chain Of Supercentres Adds Al Ain To Its Network

Number of SouqExtra outlets in UAE will cross 20 by 2010

SouqExtra! The UAE’s first chain of community supercentres, has added Al Ain to its network. The new outlet spreading over an area of 15,000 sq. ft. is coming up in Al Batheen area of Al Ain. The Al Ain outlet of SouqExtra!, involving an investment of AED 40 million, will be ready for commercial operations in September 2009, announced Saleh Lootah, Founding and Managing Director of SouqExtra. "Our foray into Al Ain is in tune with our strategy of opening countrywide outlets in the UAE," said Lootah. "Our plan is to cover all the emirates, and then expand into other Gulf countries, where a number of potential partners are negotiating with us." "Al Ain, with its large concentration of Emiratis, will have facilities and amenities customized to this segment, because SouqExtra is all about family bonds and community interaction," added Lootah. "We have selected the location after great thought and we want to give Al Ain residents a totally different shopping and leisure experience." The Al Ain branch of SouqExtra is located close to the Al Ain International airport, fuel station and schools. There will be 25 major services on offer, including laundry, pharmacy, coffee shops and gymnasium. The outlet will have parking spaces for 125 cars, and daily footfall is estimated to cross 8,800. "We anticipate an annual growth of 15 per cent by 2012, as Al Ain is a booming city with distinctive features," said Lootah. "Our team is working on creating community features that will appeal to the residents of the area. We will encourage community interaction through a host of cultural and social activities within the premises." SouqExtra! Promoters have revised their original target, in response to heightened interest from developers and service operators. SouqExtra will now open 20 outlets by 2010, against the original plan of ten. SouqExtra generated a lot of interest in the recently concluded Retail City exhibition, attracting inquiries from retail service partners interested in leasing and rental of units for operating laundries, pharmacies, money exchanges, kids play area, day care centers, walk-in clinics, gyms, banks, snacks, kiosks, etc., with complete specifications of each location. The first SouqExtra! Outlet is due to open at Ewan Residences in October 2008, followed by three more in Al Barsha, Al Quoz and Al Muhaisnah in the first quarter of 2009. Subsequently, the Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah outlets will be opened in the second quarter of 2009. The Al Ain, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi outlets are scheduled to be commissioned by the end of 2009. SouqExtra! is a pioneering branded lifestyle supercenter model, representing an innovative retail concept, shaped by extensive research into outlet positioning. It focuses on providing access to amenities and services that connect consumers’ professional and family life to the larger community, giving life more meaning and Extra! Several reputed investors have put in their investments in this pioneering concept including the Lootah Group, Emirates Post Group, National Bonds Corporation, Bonyan Holding, Abbasi Group and a group of high net worth individuals.

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