MAF in deal to set up retail academy
Dubai, March 5, 2014
Majid Al Futtaim, the leading shopping mall, retail and leisure pioneer in the Mena region, has joined joining forces with the Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT) to establish a retail academy and industry consortium.
It is aimed at boosting educational support for the growing retail sector in the UAE, said a statement from MAF.
The initiative will be undertaken by the Majid Al Futtaim Charity Foundation, a private independent entity specialised in charitable and philanthropic educational and healthcare activities in the UAE, and HCT’s commercial arm, the Centre of Excellence for Applied Research and Training (CERT).
The aim of the retail academy will be to help launch and advance retail careers of Emiratis, while also supporting the country’s fast growing retail sector, which now accounts for 20 per cent of the UAE’s non-oil GDP and employs 20 per cent of the workforce, said Dr Najib Al Khaja, the board member and CEO of Majid Al Futtaim Charity Foundation after signing the MoU with Dr Tayeb Kamali, the vice chancellor of the HCT.
HCT/ CERT and Majid Al Futtaim Charity Foundation will work together to leverage support of leading international academic institutions to help develop the first national level institution providing best in class education and training for the sector, said the company.
To support the retail academy initiative the Foundation and HCT will seek to establish a retail consortium, made-up of leading retailers, education institutions, in addition to chambers of commerce and government representatives, to provide guidance for industry skills training and ensure long term sustainability of the academy.
“Increased consumer confidence and a rise in tourism growth are helping to drive the UAE’s rapid emergence as a global retail destination. We recognise that there is a need to develop formal educational opportunities and provide vocational training in the retail sector and believe these exciting initiatives will help to ensure the UAE has a future pool of well-trained retail talent is able to fill the growing demand from retailers,” stated Dr Al Khaja.
Dr Kamali said the MAF Foundation partnership will result in empowering its graduates with the knowledge, skills and confidence to contribute effectively to the nation and its growing diversified economy and lead them to successful future careers in retail.
"This is an example of the strong links between HCT/CERT and industry partners which result in career-oriented programmes to meet the specific needs of our modern society and also provide the highest quality educational opportunities for young people throughout our nation, so that they can become valuable members of their communities," he added.-TradeArabia News Service