DUBAI — Emaar Malls, the shopping malls and retail business division of Emaar Properties, on Wednesday reported a 23 percent increase in net profits for 2014 to $368 million. Fourth quarter profit grew by 5 percent, despite the plunge in equity markets across the Gulf triggered by the fall in crude oil prices.
Strong consumer spending through the year sustained the company’s solid growth numbers. Total tenant sales across Emaar Malls portfolio were over $ 4.9 billion for 2014, an increase of 14 percent from the previous year. The tenant sales in their flagship property, The Dubai Mall, were $4.3 billion, accounting for nearly 5 percent of Dubai’s gross domestic product. Retail continues to be an important part of Dubai’s economy, representing 13 percent of the emirate’s GDP, according to the Dubai Economic Council.
“We will continue to focus on delivering innovative retail and leisure experiences to our visitors, adding consistent value to our shareholders,” said Mohamed Alabbar, chairman of Emaar Malls and Emaar Properties, in revealing the numbers. “In addition to contributing to Dubai’s GDP through retail sales at The Dubai Mall, our shopping mall assets created sustained positive economic impact by attracting international retail investments, creating thousands of new jobs and supporting the city’s hospitality and aviation sectors.”
Alabbar remains confident of future growth for retail, with a planned 1 million square foot expansion of The Dubai Mall’s Fashion Avenue currently underway. The Fashion Avenue section of Dubai Mall currently has 80 luxury flagships, while the mall has another 300 luxury brands, making it the largest selection of international brands under one roof.
Buoyed by the success of Emaar Malls’ initial public offering earlier this year, Emaar Properties is planning to go ahead with a planned IPO for its hotels division, said to be in the second half of the year.