Marks & Spencer has opened its largest flagship store in Kuwait as part of ongoing efforts to expand its presence in the Middle East.

The 72,000 sq ft store at The View in Salmiya will be operated by franchise partner Al Futtaim Group, which operates the company's stores in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Jordan, Oman, Bahrain, Qatar, Lebanon and Egypt.

"The Middle East is a priority market for M&S and through our successful partnership with Al Futtaim we are continuing to build our presence here," said CEO Marc Bolland.

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MARKS & SPENCER OFFICIALLY UNVEILS ITS LARGEST INTERNATIONAL STORE AT THE VIEW IN KUWAIT

Mr. Omar Al Futtaim, Chairman of Al Futtaim Group, today joined Mr. Marc Bolland, Marks & Spencer Chief Executive, to officially open Marks & Spencer’s largest international store at The View in Salmiya.

The new 72,000 square foot flagship store, operated by Marks & Spencer’s long term franchise partner Al Futtaim Group, is in line with the retailer’s international strategy to build a strong presence in the Middle East, as one of its priority international markets. Al Futtaim now operates 25 Marks & Spencer stores across eight territories in the region.

The new store located in Kuwait’s latest shopping destination responds to the growing needs of our Kuwaiti customers. The store brings the largest offering of clothing, food, beauty and home products in the region, including a renowned in-store Café that serves up delicious breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea meals. It ensures a bigger and better shopping environment and unparalleled customer service.

Speaking from Kuwait, Marc Bolland said: “We’re delighted to officially open our largest international store in Kuwait today. The Middle East is a priority market for Marks & Spencer and through our successful partnership with Al Futtaim we are continuing to build our presence here. As one of the world’s leading shopping mall owners and retail operators, Al Futtaim offers us invaluable retail expertise and access to

prime shopping locations like The View. This, together with Marks & Spencer’s exceptional quality fashions and food, offers something truly special for our customers in Kuwait.”

“We are proud to be part of a Kuwaiti society that is fashion forward and enjoys our truly international shopping experience and exceptional quality, innovative product offer. Through the introduction of Marks & Spencer’s largest store outside of the UK and Ireland, customers in Kuwait can now shop our most extensive fashion collections whilst also sampling the best of authentic English cuisine that our M&S Café has to offer,” said John Cooper, Managing Director of Marks & Spencer Al-Futtaim Group MENA.

The View is a new iconic standalone building featuring state-of-the-art design that flaunts the latest Marks & Spencer Spring Collection and showcases the very best of Marks & Spencer products over four floors. The new location has great visibility both from the Gulf Road and Salmiya High Street. It also accommodates easy accessibility and car parking facilities for our customers.

Exceptional quality fashions

Exceptional quality and confident style are at the heart of the M&S clothing offer. At the new store, customers will be able to choose from quality, timeless wardrobe staples such as spring macs and trench coats, lightweight knitwear and impeccably cut suits, as well as trend-led wearable fashion pieces.

The store’s clothing collections will also feature a host of clever product innovations including Stormwear™ finish denim and coats, a revolutionary fabric treatment which repels water, Waist Sculpt™ lingerie which flatters and shapes the silhouette and Insolia™ technology in its footwear ranges which improves comfort and stability in flat and high heeled shoes.

To help customers shop the extensive product offer, M&S has a range of exclusive clothing brands, each with its own distinct look and identity, which allows customers to see which brand best meets their personal style preferences. For example, in womenswear, Autograph emulates affordable designer quality with exquisite, understated elegance and luxury fabrics, while Indigo is the retailer’s authentic fashion denim and casualwear range. In menswear, Collezione is inspired by all things Italian with attention to detail in every suave, stylish piece, whilst Blue Harbour is inspired by classic British style and includes preppy polo shirts and chinos in a bold primary palette.

Each clothing brand will be highlighted for customers through unique branding, visual merchandising kit and propping – with more outfit suggestions displayed throughout the store to inspire and delight customers.

Unrivalled quality food offer & M&S Cafe

At the store, customers are also able to choose from Marks & Spencer’s delicious food and drink products. Marks & Spencer food is synonymous with quality and known for using the best ingredients. For example,

all tea and coffee is Fairtrade, all eggs are free range and all hydrogenated fats and artificial colours have been removed. The new range includes:

? Best of British – traditional British favourites such as shortbread, jams, marmalade and Earl Grey tea;

? Luxury and everyday biscuits – a wide selection of cookies, Viennese and extra chocolaty biscuits, ginger snaps and blueberry puffs;

? Confectionery and celebration gifts – the sweet treats include Belgium chocolates, mints, caramels and toffees;

? Groceries – these innovative kitchen cupboard staples make it even easier to impress your guests, including: marinades and sauces, canned goods, soups, cereals, cake mixes and dessert toppings;

? Savoury snacks – tasty snacks that are ideal for sharing such as crisps, tortillas, nuts and dried fruit;

? Flavours of the World – taking inspiration from the world’s finest recipes, the range includes authentic Indian, Oriental and Italian sauces to make the best international cuisine, as well as pasta, rice and noodles.

With seating for 60 and delicious, freshly-made dishes using the finest in-house ingredients, the new M&S Café is the retailer’s second hospitality offer to launch in the region outside of the UAE. Customers can enjoy hot snacks and traditional cream teas and English pastries as well as a wide range of Fairtrade teas and coffees served by specially trained baristas.

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Original source: Marks & Spencer