Lebanon’s economic obstacles do not prevent foreign investors from eyeing the country’s opportunities, including Majid Al Futtaim, which is preparing to raise its investments in Lebanon to $2 billion by 2030 according to an integrated plan.
Majid Al Futtaim’s retail investments, which are represented in Carrefour stores, have reached $18 million this year and are expected to rise to $50 million over the next five years.
Majid Al Futtaim Retail market is now part of an expansion plan covering 15 countries in the world, including the Arab markets, four of which have so far launched electronic stores. Lebanon has joined the latest plan that was announced by Majid Al Futtaim Retail CEO Hani Weiss in Beirut last week, in parallel with the opening of the third Carrefour stores in the Zouk Mosbeh area in Mount Lebanon.
Weiss told Asharq Al-Awsat that the volume of investment in the two previous Carrefour stores reached $18 million, with 650 employees, 99 percent of whom were Lebanese. He noted that based on the five-year plan, the group seeks to hire 1,700 employees within the next five years.
“We have the exclusive right to use the name of Carrefour in the Middle East and the plan is to double the size in the next five years,” he said.
According to the CEO, the focus of the investment is the Lebanese market because it is always open to new innovations. He added the Lebanese consumer “is selective and cares about quality.”
Thousands of goods sold by Carrefour are imported directly from France and offered at competitive prices in Lebanon.
In addition to the well-known shopping centers, the group launched the first online service of its kind in Lebanon, through the opening of the "e-store", which offers grocery goods and electronics and delivers them to the consumer within two days, at prices identical to those in store.
“In the next six months, we will reach 7,000 categories that will be available in the electronic service,” Weiss said, pointing out that the new service would increase the operating rate in the Lebanese market.