Muscat: Oman’s first Ikea store, which will bring the famed Swedish furniture brand to the country, is expected to open in the first quarter of 2022.
The global brand will open its store at Oman Avenues Mall, following a partnership signed between Al Taher Group and Al Futtaim Group.
Construction of the two-floor store is already underway, as part of the new expansion of the mall, and is expected to be one of the largest Ikea outlets in the region. It will not only serve the city of Muscat and the vicinity, but also attract shoppers from across Oman.
Commenting on the announcement, Mohammed bin Saud Al Khalili, board member of Al Taher Group, said, “We are pleased to collaborate with Al Futtaim Group, to bring the globally renowned Ikea brand to Oman Avenues Mall. At Al Taher, we are well equipped to confidently approach new market opportunities on a global scale, while continuing to build winning relationships.
“This move is in line with the vision to provide the necessary impetus to promote the Sultanate as a premiere investment destination across the region and beyond,” he added.
“We believe that Ikea Oman will not only strengthen the position of Oman Avenues Mall as a premier shopping destination, but also position the mall firmly as the shopping mall for the whole of Oman”
The strategic partnership between the two conglomerates promises to boost the diverse retail offering of Oman Avenues Mall, as it re-energises the country’s thriving trade landscape.
Talking about the brand’s strong expansion roadmap, Vinod Jayan, Managing Director of Ikea – Al Futtaim Group, said, “We are very excited to announce the entry of IKEA into Oman, which wouldn’t have been possible without an expert partner like Al Taher Group and a shopping mall platform like Oman Avenues mall.
“Choosing the right partner, right location, and developing the right infrastructure for an Ikea store is critical to the brand’s expansion in a new market,” he added. “These decisions were indeed instrumental in our choice of being associated with a strong mall partner like Oman Avenues Mall that will now enable the new destination Ikea to be placed in the heart of Muscat.
Jayan said: “The presence of leading global brands with a flavour of local shopping at Oman Avenues Mall is in perfect synergies with Ikea’s local-global philosophy. We look forward to a mutually rewarding association.”
Along with enhancing the road and flyover infrastructure around the mall to handle the increased volume of traffic with the expansion, Al Taher Group is also developing additional parking facilities which would connect horizontal and vertical parking to the store as well as a new link to the second floor of the existing mall which also houses the food court, cinemas and the entertainment centre.
Expressing gratitude to Al Taher and Al Futtaim Group, Mr. Ananth AV, Director, Lulu Group International, which operates Oman Avenues Mall, said, “We are pleased and proud to be hosting Ikea at the Oman Avenues Mall. It is our constant endeavour to provide unmatched shopping experience to our customers all under one roof, one that is hassle-free, and safe.
“The opening of one of the largest IKEA stores in the Middle-East at Oman Avenues Mall, is a testament to this and is in line with our commitment to sustained growth, in light of the changing retail environment,” he went on to say. “We are committed to building Oman Avenues Mall as the most trusted and dominant mall brand in Oman that would stand the test of time for the future of retail trade in Oman.”
It is anticipated that the opening of Ikea would bring with it a renewed thrust to the local economy, with creation of job opportunities, as well as local sustainable development of infrastructure and a robust domestic supply chain.