While most consumer electronics retailers are reeling under pressure due to the global slowdown, Sharjah-based Al Batha Group is optimistic on sales picking up in the second half of 2009.
Anticipating the potential recovery in the market, the group has forayed into retail electronics business by launching E-City, a newly floated company for the segment, outlet in Dubai. The company is upbeat on the UAE potential in the consumer electronics business.
"We are planning to have 20 outlets in the UAE, including eight in Dubai, over the next five years. I expect that the market will stage a recovery from the second half onwards. I don't see any adverse impact on the consumer electronics business as the country will weather the global economic crisis," John Willimott, Managing Director of E-City, told Emirates Business.
Al Batha Group has launched its first E-City outlet at Wafi Mall and the centre offers multi-brands in consumer electronics, home appliances, computer and telecommunications products.
When asked about the location priority over Dubai Mall and Mall of the Emirates, Willimott said: "We offer several global brands across different products and we need huge space of 20,000 square feet. It's difficult to find such a spacious slot in Dubai Mall or Mall of the Emirates. This is our strategic location as we can cater to the requirements of regular buyers and visitors here."
Agreeing that there was some dip in sales volume in the market, he said: "We are targeting to achieve at least 90 per cent of previous year's sales volume and this would be fair enough for us in the first year of operations."