Middle East franchise for Gap

US clothing retailer Gap has agreed to a second franchise deal covering give Arab Gulf states. Together with Dubai-based partner Al Tayer the retailer will open up to 35 Gap and Banana Republic stores in the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain and Oman by 2010. The first Gap stores are set to open later this year.

Earlier this year, Gap announced a franchise agreement to open stores in Singapore and Malaysia.

Joshua Schulman, head of the company’s international business alliances, said that the company felt that franchising represents a “significant opportunity” to grow Gap brands on an international level.

Al Tayer operates luxury brand franchises in the UAE, including Harvey Nichols.

International sales at Gap represented 9 percent of the retailers total 2005 sales of $16 billion.

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