World Footwear


JD Sports expands to the Middle East with new franchising deal

Jul 19, 2023 United Kingdom
JD Sports expands to the Middle East with new franchising deal
The UK-based sportswear retailer has signed a 10-year franchise agreement with the Dubai-based brand management company GMG that will allow it to expand into the Middle East
Under the terms of the deal, GMG will open around 50 stores under the JD banner by 2028, with locations in the United Arab Emirates, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Egypt. This expansion is seen as a “meaningful contributor” to JD's plans of opening between 200 and 300 new stores each year over the next five years, and a “pivotal move” in the continued expansion into under-penetrated markets. It is also the British retailer's first-ever franchise agreement.

“We are very pleased to be delivering this historic deal, the first franchise agreement JD has entered, in partnership with GMG. Through my own career, I have seen firsthand the massive untapped potential for retailers in the Middle East, and I am certain that GMG – with its expansive retail expertise and a local understanding of the customer – is the best partner for us in the region”, commented Régis Schultz, CEO of JD Sports.

GMG manages a portfolio of more than 500 GMG Sports stores across seven concepts, including its global flagship brand, Sun and Sand Sports.  According to JD, it has an “unparalleled understanding of the consumer in the Middle East”, which makes it a “perfectly positioned” partner to introduce the brand in the region.  

“By leveraging our respective strengths and expertise, we aim to revolutionise the sports retail sector, offering a diverse range of high-quality products, exceptional customer service, and innovative shopping experiences. This alliance is a testament to our commitment to enhancing the lives of consumers in the region, as we embark on a journey to provide them with unmatched choices and empower their active lifestyles”, added Mohammad A. Baker, Deputy Chairman and CEO of GMG.

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