Customer engagement is key focus at World Retail Congress

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Customer engagement is key focus at World Retail Congress
Ian McGarrigle, chairman of the World Retail Congress, speaks at the 10th World Retail Congress in Dubai on Tuesday.

Dubai - Over 1,000 leading retailers discuss disruption and innovation in the retail industry

By Abdul Basit

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Published: Tue 12 Apr 2016, 6:35 PM

Last updated: Tue 12 Apr 2016, 8:40 PM

The 10th World Retail Congress, the world's most exclusive retail event for senior executives, opened in Dubai on Tuesday.
Retail experts discussed disruption and innovation within retail, how to effectively engage with customers and what's next for the sector, both within the region and globally. They also talked about a number of key industry trends as well as challenges and opportunities across the retail industry.
In partnership with Majid Al Futtaim and the Dubai Chamber of Commerce & Industry, the World Retail Congress 2016 is held under the theme 'Attracting and Engaging the Modern Customer'.
Over 1,000 leading retailers and industry experts are confirmed to attend over the next three days, showcasing the region's potential in the sector.
Opening the Congress, Eng Mohammed Ahmed bin Abdulaziz Al Shehhi, Undersecretary of the UAE Ministry for Economic Affairs, said: "The retail sector is one of the UAE's most promising sectors and forms a key part of our economic diversification plan and Vision 2021, that looks to promote sustainable development across the country."
Al Shehhi added: "The retail industry currently contributes 23 per cent of total foreign direct investment inflows to the UAE. We expect to see further growth, thanks to the country's robust infrastructure and advanced environment, which make the UAE an ideal place for doing business."
Ian McGarrigle, chairman, World Retail Congress, said: "We are very excited to be here in Dubai for the 2016 World Retail Congress. When deciding where to host our milestone 10th Congress, Dubai, one of the most important retail capitals of the world, was the clear choice."
The first session to mark the proceedings was titled 'Reinventing the retail experience: What can the industry learn from the Dubai vision'. It was led by Alain Bejjani, CEO of Majid Al Futtaim, and served to position the Congress in the context of the unique position that Dubai holds in the international retail space.
Bejjani said: "The importance of hosting it here for Dubai and the Mena region cannot be overstated. It provides local retailers and mall operators a chance to showcase their innovation and offer to a global audience the retail sector's immense growth potential and the opportunity this presents for international brands. We look forward to continuing discussions tomorrow about the future of retail and reiterating our commitment to contributing towards making Dubai the world's number one retail destination."
- abdulbasit@khaleejtimes.com

Eng Mohammed Ahmed bin Abdulaziz Al Shehhi, Undersecretary of the UAE Ministry for Economic Affairs, opens the 10th World Retail Congress in Dubai on Tuesday.
Eng Mohammed Ahmed bin Abdulaziz Al Shehhi, Undersecretary of the UAE Ministry for Economic Affairs, opens the 10th World Retail Congress in Dubai on Tuesday.
Alain Bejjani, CEO of Majid Al Futtaim, addresses the first session during the 10th World Retail Congress in Dubai on Tuesday.
Alain Bejjani, CEO of Majid Al Futtaim, addresses the first session during the 10th World Retail Congress in Dubai on Tuesday.

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