What sells most in Dubai? Hint: It’s not gold or phones

Beauty, personal care to lead sector growth with CAGR of 6% until 2020

Illustrative Inage

DUBAI 9 April 2017: It’s not gold or smartphones – Dubai’s apparel and footwear market, valued at $11.5 billion in 2016, accounted for the largest share of the emirate’s retail sector, according to new analysis released by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry during the 11th World Retail Congress.

The three-day Congress, held in Dubai April 4-6th in partnership with the Chamber, brought together 1,500 attendees, including 150 industry leaders and experts, to discuss key trends impacting the global retail sector.

The analysis found that apparel leads the category with 73 per cent market share, followed by footwear (18 per cent), and sportswear (9 per cent). Demand within this segment was supported last year by value and mid-range offerings by retailers, particularly during shopping festivals and sales events. This trend is expected to continue through 2021, leading the category to achieve a projected compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.4 per cent in the medium term.

Smart Watches

Personal accessories was identified as the second-largest product category within Dubai’s retail sector, with an estimated market value of $4.2 billion. Key factors that supported its growth in 2016 included rising demand for smart watches and the growing popularity of online retail in the emirate. The category is projected to grow at a CAGR of 4.4% over the medium term to reach $5 billion by 2020.

Consumer electronics claimed the third-largest share of the local retail market last year, generating sales worth $2.3 billion. The segment is expected to remain stable over the medium term, growing at a forecast CAGR of 0.4% amid a maturing market and an increase in the number of tourists.

The value of Dubai’s home and garden market was estimated at $1.7 billion as of 2016, and the segment is projected to see a steady CAGR of 3.2% over the medium term to reach $1.9 billion by 2020.

Beauty Leads

Dubai’s beauty and personal care market was valued at $1.53 billion, and the category is set to lead retail sector growth with a forecast CAGR of 6% until 2020.

Sales of consumer appliances in Dubai were valued at $622 million last year, and are expected to remain relatively unchanged in the medium term, growing at a forecast CAGR of 1.1% to reach $650 million by 2020.

Hamad Buamim, President and CEO, Dubai Chamber, said the analysis highlights the underlying strength of Dubai’s retail sector, as well as the key trends that will fuel future growth within the market.

“The easing of UAE visa regulations to some countries is expected to drive tourism, which will likely have a positive impact on the Dubai’s retail market going forward as the emirate prepares to attract up to 20 million tourists annually by 2020.”

Dubai Chamber’s President and CEO explained that this trend will likely result in a change to the demographics and characteristics of visitors, and added that retailers in the emirate will need to adjust and expand their offerings to cater to diverse consumer groups.

 – By Rajive Singh