Brands Alshaya is bringing to Kuwait

Posted by Mark

Around a year ago I posted that I had heard Alshaya was bringing Tesco to Kuwait and since then things have gone pretty mute. At one point I was even told Tesco and Sultan had also formed a partnership where Sultan would carry Tesco products but nothing has come out of that as well.

But according to a different source of mine, Alshaya are still bringing Tesco to Kuwait. I couldn’t get any more information but the previous rumor I heard was that Tesco would replace Carrefour at The Avenues. We’ll have to wait and see.

Below is a list of brands I am aware of that Alshaya are bringing to Kuwait:

- IHOP (International House of Pancakes)
- The Hummingbird Bakery
- Pei Wei Asian Diner
- The Cheesecake Factory
- Texas Roadhouse
- Dolce & Gabbana
- Jo Malone
- Teavana
- Harvey Nichols
- Williams Sonoma
- West Elm
- Tesco

Oddly the one I’m looking forward to the most is Williams Sonoma since it’s really difficult finding high end kitchenware in Kuwait.

Thanks Paul


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83 comments, add your own...


  1. Randy says:

    100% agree on the Williams-Sonoma … I usually have to ship kitchen tools in from W-S and Crate & Barrel !!

  2. Marcopolo says:

    Dolce & Gabbana? That’s weird.

    • Mark says:

      You would think but it looks like they’re expanding into the luxury arena. Makes sense since they’ve taken over all the low end and are starting to cannibalize sales from their own brands.

      • Marcopolo says:

        I agree, they would expand into the luxury arena as you say, but never seen Alshaya outside US/UK. Plus, D&G usually handle their own shops.

        • Mark says:

          You can’t own stores in Kuwait without a Kuwaiti business partner. They used to be with Villa Moda previously but that relationship ended.

          Alshaya own Starbucks in Russia and Eastern Europe along with other brands. This is taken from their website:

          Stores in Russia
          American Eagle
          Claire’s
          Justice
          La Senza
          M.A.C
          mothercare
          Next
          Payless
          Pinkberry
          Starbucks Coffee
          The Body Shop

          Stores in United Kingdom
          La Senza
          Pinkberry

          Stores in United Arab Emirates
          Al Forno
          American Eagle
          Asha’s
          Bath & Body Works
          Boots
          Claire’s
          Coast
          Dean & Deluca
          Debenhams
          Dorothy Perkins
          Evans
          Express
          Foot Locker
          H&M
          Jo Malone
          Justice
          La Senza
          Le Pain Quotidien
          M.A.C
          Milano
          Miss Selfridge
          mothercare
          Next
          Noodle Factory
          Oasis
          Office Depot
          P.F. Chang’s
          Payless
          Peacocks
          Pinkberry
          Potbelly
          Pottery Barn
          Pottery Barn Kids
          River Island
          Sarai
          Shake Shack
          Solaris
          Starbucks Coffee
          Texas Roadhouse
          Topman
          Topshop
          VaVaVoom
          Victoria’s Secret
          Vision Express
          Wallis
          Warehouse

          • Marcopolo says:

            Exactly my point, which is most if not all of the brands you mentioned above are US/UK.
            I’m not talking about their area of operation.
            Italian High-end brand like D&G by Alshaya seems very unlikely to me, last time I checked they were among the announced shops which will be featured in 360 and obviousely this didn’t happen.

            • Mark says:

              Prada is going to 360, D&G heading to Phase III Avenues. Of course this isn’t confirmed just what I’ve picked up but my rumors usually end up being right.

  3. Honestly ?
    The only thing I’m looking forward too is the Keylime & Mango cheese cake from the Cheesecake Factore :O

  4. Jasim says:

    Alshaya = Monopoly

    Too obvious to explain..

    • Mark says:

      Not really. Monopoly would mean you don’t have a choice except for Alshaya brands and that isn’t the case right now.

      • Jasim says:

        “That isnt the case right now”

        Give it a few years and it WILL be the case. And like other companies, they have top government officials in their pocket.

        Not to mention they use business tactics which would otherwise be considered ilegal in the west. Keep that in mind.

        • Mark says:

          So you’re predicting only alshaya stores will be open in the future? Cuz that’s the only way they’ll end up with a monopoly and i really don’t think that’s going to ever happen.

          • Jasim says:

            Dude, the company does not necessarily have to have a monopoly to screw everyone over. Its bad enough if a company already has a large majority of the market with little compitition against it.

            In a free market, there are many competitors which lowers prices for consumors and increaces quality.

            This is basic economics…

        • Ahmed says:

          @Jasim – Having government officials in your pocket and paying bribes is expected and commonplace in Kuwait when you do business.

          • Jasim says:

            Ok, but wheres the law that stops someone from totally taking over something?

            Where is the law that keeps things fair?

            Why do people buy from Alshaya when they know Alshaya is taking advatage and is greedy?

            • Ahmed says:

              @Jassim – There is a growing trend in Dubai for people not buying from the UK stores – many AlShaya. They are ordering on-line or buying when they go home. The return policies have been a major contention with Dubai purchasers who do have access to a consumer rights laws which you don’t have in Kuwait. People don’t fear him in Dubai- he’s just a guy on the block. He can clean Al-Tayer’s toilet.

              • aaa says:

                I just got back from Canada and NONE of the stores let me return stuff for cash, despite very strong consumer rights laws. They even put signs up stating all sales are exchange only.

        • Dr. Bas says:

          I agree with everything Jasim said. I’ve discussed this with Mark before but he refused to believe me.

          Technically, Al-shaya doesn’t have a monopoly over the market, but their business practices are not exactly ethical (and would be illegal in the west).

          • Mark says:

            it has nothing to do with believing you or not. It has to do with facts and right now you’re just stating accusations without providing any factual evidence. So it’s just “hearsay”.

            • Dr. Bas says:

              Actually, I’ve talked to people that have had to deal with them, and let’s just say they weren’t too thrilled.

              Anyway, try to open up a frozen yogurt shop (or anything that can be viewed as competition) in the avenues then come and tell me how nice they are. Outside of the avenues they have less power, but would certainly try their best to get in your way. That is a fact, and not ‘hearsay’.

              • Mark says:

                Yeah talking to people and hearing what they say is called “hearsay” not facts.

                The example you also provided doesn’t help your argument because Alshaya own Avenues and they have two frozen yogurt places already open there and they’ll probably open a third in phase III. So why would they want to allow another frozen yogurt place to open considering both IKEA and Napket also serve frozen yogurt?

                Other than the fact Alshaya don’t want a frozen yogurt place to compete with their own inside their own mall, I’m sure they want some kind of variety and “originality” and another frozen yogurt place is just so “ZZZzzzzzz…”

                But since we are talking about monopolies and you brought up frozen yogurt. How many different frozen yogurt brands/companies/places are there in Kuwait? Does that look like a monopoly to you?

      • meh says:

        It’s more for a fungus infestation

  5. Jasim says:

    Not going to happen? Why not?

    Not like they really have any competiters. And they will buyout anyone every chance they get. And there will be no government laws to stop them.

    Its a slow process. But when you think about it, they’re atleast 75% of the way there.

  6. Khalid Khan says:

    Alshaya are a Rolls Royce outfit. They have very high ethical standards. That’s why top Western brands like Starbucks, H&M and Body Shop that guard their reputation jealously entrust their brands to Alshaya.

    They don’t have the retail market to themselves. Nor do they operate only in Kuwait. The assertion that they are successful because they have top government officials in their pocket is absurd. They succeed for the same reason Apple succeeds, because they are shrewd, savvy operators, they offer things that people want to buy and are always trying to improve the way they do things.

    • S says:

      WELL DONE!! I second you!

    • Jasim says:

      They are successful because they are taking over the retail market in Kuwait, not just because they bribe government officals.

      There are laws in the US and Europe that prevent companies from taking over a certain market.

      Tell me. Whats stopping this company from growing too big?

      • Mark says:

        Jasim why would anyone stop any company from growing too big? You want Kuwaiti companies to remain small? What you just want American and European companies to be successful but Kuwaiti companies must suck ass and only sell cupcakes?

        You’re talking as if Alshaya have a monopoly when they’re far far from having any kind of monopoly. Just check out the frozen yogurt field, does Alshaya look like they have a monopoly in that?

        What about the clothing stores? Are you saying 90% of the clothing stores in Kuwait are owned by Alshaya?

        You’re being ridiculous.

      • aaa says:

        Kuwait is not their largest or most profitable market btw

  7. Chris says:

    Texas Roadhouse ?! I love that place.. would be nice if they do get it in Kuwait :D

  8. P2BK~ says:

    Can we have a Chipotle Mr. Alshaya? Pretty please.

  9. ibnturab says:

    The Al-Shaya family/corp have been growing their business in kuwait for almost 150 years — You have to respect that at least

  10. T says:

    “it’s really difficult finding high end kitchenware in Kuwait.”

    BUT YOU DON’T EVEN COOK.

  11. AG says:

    Having a Williams Sonoma here would be AMAZING but so would having an IHOP :) I’ve been hearing the IHOP rumor for almost 2 years now. Any rumors on an opening date or location?

  12. Naif says:

    Are they opening them in Saudi Arabia as well ?

  13. Stranger says:

    all clothes and food

    nothing for brain

    /nothing to do here

  14. Edgar says:

    I really hope that they open up IHOP and not just one branch, too many breakfast places but not enough quality. They could also bring in Denny’s, IN n OUT burgers and top it off with Red Lobster and we are all set…

  15. zaydoun says:

    Yes they are a large player but so what? They’re simply good at what they do. And if the Avenues looks like one big Al Shaya outlet, it’s because it really is.. It’s their mall and they’re free to do what they want with it. 7 Starbucks (and counting) in one mall? Why the hell not? Go for it!

    My only gripe against them is their haphazard import of random and mediocre franchises. But I guess that’s just me, because random mediocre franchises seem to have a huge fan club here

    • flufflyomelette says:

      +1
      Random, mediocre, mainstream. Not all brands they import, but most of them.

      • aaa says:

        The real reason is because having a large selection of brands with good name recognition makes it easier to get newer brands on board

  16. zaydoun says:

    I woulda preferred Crate & Barrel over Pottery Barn

  17. Ralph says:

    Where can i find trekking/camping shoes in Kuwait? Brands like Merell, Salomon, North Face, etc…thks

    • cajie says:

      Explorer Base in Tilal Complex – Shuwaikh.
      I picked up most of my trekking stuff from there.

    • Mark says:

      Check explorers base in tilals complex.

      Where can I find ski clothes?

      • cajie says:

        Not sure if they are still there – but the last time I went to Brands for Less, they had ski clothes – and they were really cheap.
        I picked up some really good jackets for extreme cold weather. I thought of buying the Ski clothes just because they looked so cool – but was not planning on any skiing anytime soon.

  18. Ralph says:

    :) you can’t, only if you need it for a trip outside Kuwait, like me :)
    Thanks for the address

  19. aaa says:

    everyone knows that because Alshaya have paid off the government in Kuwait they were abel to open stores in Russia, Cyprus, Turkey, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, UK, plus the rest of the GCC and north africa.

    It has nothing to do with good business practices.

    Like Jasim says “Too obvious to explain…”

    • sven says:

      No, it is not too obvious to explain – your comment is flawed and illogical, even if it were true, which I doubt, how would paying off the Kuwait authorities assist Alshaya in opening stores in the UK, (for example)?

      • aaa says:

        Sorry sven, i might have been too subtle?

        the post was supposed to be sarcastic, i think you just got caught up in the rhetoric.

        Its supposed to sound ridiculous, of course its not true.

        lets clear things up, Alshaya do not pay off the govt. they have a high sense of ethical and moral standards.

        They are successful because they are good at what they do.

  20. bbb says:

    Dedicated to Jasim

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dD9A8x_xn5g&feature=player_embedded#!

    hope I don’t violate some IP rules by posting this, I just thought Jasim and those of his ilk might enjoy it.

  21. A reader says:

    AAA every one knows your Jasim . get real .

  22. tintin says:

    Why doesn’t Tesco replace Geant> Geant is just another government co-op.

  23. AAA says:

    I still want Al-Shaya Airways. This country needs another discount carrier that is civil like Wataniya was, I am sick of Jazeera Airways.

    • Mark says:

      Wataniya Airways wasn’t a discount carrier. But yeah I would like to see Alshaya buy Wataniya Airways and run it.

      • AAA says:

        Disagree. I paid 5KD to fly to Dubai on many occasions – that is a discount carrier. I never paid more than 40 KD to fly to Dubai on Wataniya. Maybe that was one of their problems, they didn’t know who they were – dysfunctional – their marketing was off. I miss Wataniya IMMENSELY and would fly anyone to Dubai as long as I could go through sheikh saad terminal and NOT out of KIA which is a nightmare for me.

        • Mark says:

          You might have gotten the 5kd during one of their sales but they weren’t competing with Jazeera, they were competing with emirates, gulf air, kuwait airways etc..

          • MMM says:

            With the airline industry as important as it is in Kuwait, you would think that they would want to build a new airport (don’t send me a link with a rendering) and have a decent carrier to fly all the desperate passengers that want out of here due.

          • athnab says:

            They cannot even compete with the non discount carriers that you have mentioned. Their fleet size, the planes that they use, and their prices are all indicators that they are nothing but a discount carrier.

            even their marketing campaign. The only reason that they failed is because they were unable (unfortunately) to locate themseleves within the airliness business, they were lost between both worlds. even the JF (business) class on kuwait airways simply outpreforms that of wataniya, i’ve been on both, and you cant even say that wataniya is not a discount carrier :)

            • Mark says:

              If they could compete or not is a different issue. My response was to a previous comment above who called WA a discount airline when WA was a “Premium Airline”.

  24. purpleram says:

    Now all they need to do is create the ‘stickiness’ quotient since they have managed to do a decent job in creating ‘barriers to entry’ for the others… ….yay ! I always wanted to use that line from my management classes.

  25. WhatsEva says:

    im in alshaya and Pottery Barn Teens on the way also


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