PARIS — Galeries Lafayette plans to open stores in Istanbul and Kuwait City in 2019, boosting its expansion in the Middle East, the French department store chain said on Monday.
With the two new locations, the group will have eight stores in the region, where it first set up in Dubai in 2009.
The 120-year-old French retailer is in the midst of an expansion drive and has set a goal of having 20 stores outside of France within five years. It already has two stores in Beirut and is preparing to open its first store in Qatar next year.
“The international expansion of our store chain is a key growth driver for Galeries Lafayette now more than ever,” said chief executive officer Nicolas Houzé.
Galeries Lafayette recently opened a new store in the outskirts of Paris with a new, streamlined style featuring fewer items in the store meant to complement an expanded choice online for products like luggage. It also plans to open a new flagship on the Champs-Elysées in Paris next year.
The retailer also recently bolstered its online business with the acquisition of French catalogue retailer La Redoute. The catalogue company had undergone a major overhaul that entailed reorienting its business online.
Galeries Lafayette’s planned Kuwait City location will be in the Assima Mall and operated under a franchise agreement with Ali Bin Ali, a family-owned group that the French retailer paired up with for the Doha store.
The Istanbul store will be in the Vadistanbul shopping center and operated under franchise with the DEMSA group, the Turkish retailer that operates Galeries Lafayette’s other Turkish store.