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Dubai-based book stores chain Magrudy's is set to expand by franchising across the Gulf States, after signing a franchise agreement November 14th to open three stores in Qatar. The deal has been signed with Doha-based Falcon Home Entertainment, whose Chairman, HE Sheikh Khalid Bin Ahmed Bin Abdullah Al Thani, says: 'Qatar is in a state of flux right now, much like Dubai was several years ago, and it is a great time to develop the book retail market which has been underserved in the past.'

Magrudy's was established in 1975 and now has five Dubai outlets, with a sixth flagship store opening in Dubai Festival City early next year and its first branch in Abu Dhabi around the same time. In preparation for franchising Magrudy's underwent a professional franchise development programme provided by international consultants Franchise Development Services.

'The Magrudy's franchise proposition provides an exceptional mix of brand, product and operations resources,' says Tracey Furey, Managing Director of Franchise Development Services UAE.

Adds Jonathan MacDonald, Magrudy's chief business development officer: 'Apart from Dubai, most towns and cities in the GCC region are starved of access to a comprehensive range of English and Arabic books. In fact, many GCC residents make special trips to Dubai to stock up their bookshelves.'

Magrudy's owners Abdullah and Isobel Abulhoul add: 'This agreement signals a new era for the company. Falcon is a great choice for a franchise partner, as they have extensive experience of the retail business in Qatar through their music store chains. We are looking forward to working closely with Falcon to bring the quality of product range and customer service that customers have come to expect from Magrudy's outlets in Dubai.'

The company reports that similar franchises are under negotiation in other GCC countries.


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