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Dubai Festival City says goodbye to HyperPanda

Staff Reporter/Dubai
Filed on March 29, 2017 | Last updated on March 29, 2017 at 06.55 am
 HyperPanda store at Dubai Festival City, Dubai, UAE.
HyperPanda store at Dubai Festival City, Dubai, UAE.

(Alamy Image)

The closure of the hypermarket comes amid fears of a slowdown in traditional retail as the popularity of online retail in the region rises.

HyperPanda will soon be closing its doors at Dubai Festival City, with plans for a clearance sale expected in the coming days.

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The large hypermarket has been operating in the mall for more than a decade, and employs more than 300 people. The store has been a popular fixture in the neighborhood ever since it opened its doors in 2006.

Saudi Arabia-based Azizia Panda United Co had, in 2014, announced plans to expand its HyperPanda stores in the UAE with investments of around Dh3 billion over the next three years.

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Many shoppers have voiced their concerns about the lack of a hypermarket once the store closes. Many have also pointed out that there are no other hypermarkets nearby, that they can go to.  

The closure of the hypermarket comes amid fears of a slowdown in traditional retail as the popularity of online retail in the region rises. The growth in e-commerce has particularly affected Saudi Arabia, where Savola, one of the largest food and retail groups in the kingdom, reported its first quarterly loss of more than Dh900m in eight years for the fourth quarter of 2016.

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Savola Group is the parent company of HyperPanda, and the group closed 51 smaller Pandati stores last year as the economic slowdown in the kingdom hit consumer demand.

"Due to the rapid deceleration in grocery retail, the performance of these assets fell below forecasts and the inventory purchased in anticipation of these forecasts was high," it said in a filing.

rohma@khaleejtimes.com 


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