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Plug-Ins plans regional push

Dubai-based IT retail giant Plug-Ins will spread its wings in 2005 and expand across the Middle East. Plug-Ins is negotiating with several prospective partners with a view to setting up both airport operations and high-street franchises in the Gulf and beyond.

Dubai-based IT retail giant Plug-Ins will spread its wings in 2005 and expand across the Middle East. Plug-Ins is negotiating with several prospective partners with a view to setting up both airport operations and high-street franchises in the Gulf and beyond.

“Expansion is a natural next step in the strategy. There is a gap in the region’s market which Plug-Ins can fill,” said Miran Ellahee, marketing manager at Plug-Ins. “We are looking to go overseas, and by the end of 2005 you will see Plug-Ins established in the wider Gulf market.”

Plug-Ins participated in last year’s Middle East Exclusive retail show. After receiving a positive response from airport operators, Plug-Ins is now moving forward with the idea of setting up shop in transit lounges across the region.

“We have got two options. Either we can go to the duty free operators and we take over the electronics retail business, or we can go in there as a franchise. We have had expressions of interest from a number of regional operators,” Ellahee added.

Ellahee also revealed that away from the airport retail environment, the company was also exploring franchising operations in several countries across the region. With Plug-Ins now representing some 300 brands, the company claims that it can offer fantastic pricing, merchandising assistance and even staff training to franchisees. Longer-term, Plug-Ins has even wider ambition in terms of geographic expansion.

“The Plug-Ins name is registered in 36 countries worldwide. We didn’t do it just for the sake of it. We did it with a view to becoming not just a regional electronics retailer, but also a global player. This region is the first step,” concluded Ellahee.

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