5 questions with Sharjah’s iMall boss


GulfRetail’s Mujeeb Rahman speaks Monir Lotfi, Director of iMall, situated between the emirates of Sharjah and Dubai. The mall, opened on July 6 this yr, is a serious vacation spot for shopper know-how devices. Developed by Good Residence Actual Property, the mall is unfold over a complete constructed-up space of one hundred twenty five,000 sq. ft.

Lotfi speaks confidently regardless of the declining shopper electronics market and rising e-commerce.


How have been the three months for iMall since its inception in July? What’s the present occupancy fee?

Since our grand opening in July this yr, our buyer’s response to the mall has been very promising, and we’re heading in the right direction in constructing the model. In sq. ft. phrases, the occupancy fee is at eighty five per cent.


Apparently no main electronics retailers have their shops within the mall. Is it as a result of they’re unwilling or that may be a technique?

It’s a technique, as iMall is a worth-based mostly shopping center offering shoppers with a portfolio of style and way of life manufacturers together with an array IT outlets. Almost about the electronics retailers, our key focus has been on SME’s, predominantly as a result of their potential to supply versatile pricing and willingness to barter with shoppers.


Researches earlier this yr confirmed that the UAE at present had extra malls than the precise demand out there and thus have reached the purpose of most. Your feedback?

I consider that there’s area for area of interest malls or malls with a singular tenant combine. The UAE is creating quickly with so many new livable areas and the success of a mall is determined by numerous elements, together with the classification of the shopping center, location, tenant combine, promotion and advertising technique, mall operation and so on.


Monir Lotfi, Director, iMall.

Quick evolving e-commerce is usually cited by retailers as a rising menace to their companies they usually ultimately step into the web market place. Don’t you assume it’s time we had a brand new, revolutionary strategy in retailing?

True, the web market has been rising quickly. Our edge although depends inside our focused phase and the power to hook up with a human and discount with them – you don’t get that on-line. Moreover, they nonetheless need the contact and really feel expertise of the product and never lots of people learn all of the specs when they’re purchasing on-line so for lots of them they might moderately have somebody taking them via the specs of the product.

To reply your query, there’s undoubtedly scope for progressive approaches in retailing, very similar to many retailers globally at the moment are implementing, and I feel it’s solely a matter of time for native retailers to catch on and complement their providers to remain present.


Business figures present that the buyer electronics sector progress has been slowing for a while now. Just lately, a number one group within the sector admitted it whereas speaking to me. How do you place your self out there in these arduous occasions?

I consider that the buyer electronics/ IT sector will all the time have it swings every so often identical to another business. Nevertheless, this sector particularly is a key driver of financial improvement on a worldwide degree, and might be pushed with fixed innovation. We simply need to always sustain-to-date with the newest developments and altering shopper calls for. iMall offers shoppers with worth-based mostly presents, so no matter financial circumstances clients will all the time obtain worth for his or her cash.



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