Majid Al Futtaim’s financial results revealed that in 2020, the Carrefour business recorded a revenue decrease of 1% standing at AED28 billion, while its EBITDA grew by 14% to AED1.6 billion.
The company’s Retail’s online sales, however, increased by 188% across all markets, contributing 3% of its total revenue in 2020. This boost was driven by a rapid shift to online retailing that resulted from lockdowns and heightened safety measures. At the same time, the company leveraged the opportunity to accelerate its digital offering with the opening of four new fulfilment centres and dark stores across the region.
“The pandemic has not only been a financial crisis, but an even bigger crisis of trust. We have built our organisation to withstand adverse economic conditions, so our primary focus was on acting swiftly to protect our customers and employees, as we worked diligently to restore trust and maintain non-negotiable commitments to our sustainable business practices. The fact that we have experienced growth in some of our businesses during a year of unprecedented disruption is a testament to the importance that should always be placed on people, the planet and our collective progress. For me, this is stakeholder capitalism in action, and it makes me optimistic about our future,” said Alain Bejjani, CEO of of Majid Al Futtaim.
Majid Al Futtaim – Ventures experienced the greatest impact of the pandemic, with a 49% decrease in revenue and a 122% decrease in EBITDA in 2020, standing at AED1.4 billion and -AED92 million, respectively.
This decline was driven by government-mandated closures of Leisure, Entertainment and Cinema assets for a prolonged period, combined with a shortage of movie content globally. As restrictions began to ease in the second half of the year, customers gradually returned to the company’s assets.
In response to the temporary closure of cinemas, Majid Al Futtaim redefined its offering for movie-goers through customer-led innovations, such as the launch of VOX Cinemas Drive-in on the rooftop of Mall of the Emirates.
The innovation continued at Majid Al Futtaim – Ventures, with the recent launch of THAT fashion store in Mall of the Emirates, where a multi-brand homegrown concept is set to revolutionise the future of retail in the UAE and the region by providing a world of immersive experiences.
In 2021, Majid Al Futtaim will continue efforts to support its stakeholders, including governments in markets where it operates, by working towards a full economic recovery and sustainable economic development, underpinned by prudent financial risk management.
Reaffirming the company’s commitment to continue bringing new experiences to its customers,
Majid Al Futtaim – Properties plans to open City Centre Al Zahia and Mall of Oman later this year.
Majid Al Futtaim – Retail will continue its expansion plans, including the establishment of new stores in Kenya, Uganda, and Uzbekistan. The company also has plans to open multiple stores in the next five years in Egypt, grow in Saudi Arabia and scale up its e-commerce capacity to meet growing online demand across the region.
Majid Al Futtaim – Cinemas will continue its expansion in Saudi Arabia, with the opening of 30 new VOX Cinemas screens planned for 2021.