Emaar Malls, the Dubai-based developer of shopping malls and retail assets, announced on Tuesday a first-half net profit of Dh345 million, down from Dh1.13 billion reported for the corresponding 2019 period.
The developer, majority-owned by Emaar Properties, posted a revenue of Dh1.657 billion in the first six months, against the Dh2.103 billion recorded in the same 2019 period.
The developer of several malls, including the iconic Dubai Mall, said that despite the severe challenges posed by the epidemic, occupancy levels across its assets - The Dubai Mall, Dubai Marina Mall, Gold & Diamond Park, Souk Al Bahar, and the Community Retail Centres - remained stable on 2019 levels.
"The strong 92 per cent occupancy in the face of the crisis demonstrates Emaar Malls' commitment to its partners. A steady return to footfall across the group's mall assets was also noted due to their prioritisation of its visitors', tenants' and employees' wellbeing," Emaar Mall said in a statement.
"I firmly believe that Emaar Malls' results showed strength and resilience in the face of the challenges presented to us by the pandemic," said Mohamed Alabbar of Emaar group.
"Our continuous innovation, diversification of our portfolio and investment in digital to bring our destinations to life in new channels added further strength to our results. By driving The Dubai Mall into new channels at speed to serve our customers rapidly changing needs, and, by using digital immersive experiences to engage the customer and stay connected during these challenging times, we can look ahead to the future with even more confidence," said Alabbar.
"We are continuing to provide our visitors with the safest mall destination experiences in the world, and by also reducing our operational costs and supporting our tenants, we are positive about future market conditions and look forwards to continued progress as tourism is welcomed to the UAE once again," he added.
Emaar Malls said it continued its growth through omnichannel retailing with a significant contribution to its revenue achieved through Namshi, which was fully acquired by Emaar Malls in 2019. The regional e-commerce fashion and lifestyle platform recorded half-yearly revenue at Dh664 million, 57 per cent higher than the same period last year. Its success in the first half of 2020 was attributed to the higher rate of online shopping, coupled with exponential growth in the Saudi market.
As part of Emaar Malls' commitment to extend support to their tenants, the developer also implemented a flexible rent Relief Policy in respect of the lockdown (March 25 - April 27) and post-lockdown (April 28 - August 31) periods.
In line with its strategy to further develop its Community Retail Centres, Emaar Malls is redeveloping the Meadows Village to increase its GLA by approximately 95,000 sq. ft.
Emaar Malls' partnership with Time Out Group will see the opening of the region's first Time Out Market in Souk Al Bahar by Q1 2021, it said.
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