Retailer Dune London focuses on Middle East expansion

Footwear brand plans to open an additional 17 stores in the Middle East in 2017

Danni Slater, Dune London’s international brand manager, says the company is looking to bring its Head over Heels label here. Courtesy: Sarah Algethami/Gulf News

Gulf News

Dubai: British footwear brand Dune London is expanding aggressively in the Middle East to cash in on growing demand.

The company is rolling out five additional stores in the UAE in the coming five months, bringing the total number of stores in the country to 19. These will be located in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Ras Al Khaimah, Fujairah and Al Ain.

By the end of 2017, Dune aims to have around 50 stores in the Middle East, with 17 new locations set to open in Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait, Danni Slater, International Brand Manager at Dune, told Gulf News in an interview on Tuesday.

“We see the most growth in the Middle East. This market is our focus. We see so many opportunities here. The customers’ response to Dune London has been positive so far,” she said, adding that the company’s stores in the region are performing well, but declined to disclose financial details.

The UAE is Dune’s largest market in the Middle East, accounting for 65 per cent of the company’s sales in the region.

Dune sells everything from sandals and stilettos to boots and accessories, with prices starting from Dh244 and going up to Dh1,200. It designs products specifically for the Middle East. Embellished heels, for instance, are popular here, Slater said.

Asked what kind of shoes Middle Eastern women like to buy, Slater said: “They love all the detailing-any embellishment does really well for us — and bags that match the shoes.”

Given the demand the company sees in the Middle East, it looks to bring Head over Heels by Dune here. It is a more affordable footwear brand compared to Dune, with prices starting from Dh149.

“We feel that the product will do extremely well,” Slater said.

Meanwhile, Dune is gearing up to make its debut in New Zealand, with two stores scheduled to open in Auckland in September, she said.