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Brief Published: 21 Jun 2021

MENA Sports Store Openings: Spring/Summer 2021

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Adidas, The Dubai Mall

New Adidas, Puma and Under Armour flagships in the MENA region are providing shoppers with hyperlocal, gamified and digitally amplified shopping experiences courtesy of cutting-edge phygital tech and sustainable store design. Such approaches will speak to the region’s tech-loving ‘youth bulge’ – the median age of the UAE population is 32.6 (WPR, 2020).

Adidas’ Contextual Tech Seduces Consumers

In The Dubai Mall, Adidas’ flagship store (the first MENA store with a dedicated Outdoor section, signifying the outdoor boom we charted in Harnessing the Outdoor Opportunity) features fitting room smart mirrors for contextualising potential purchases. An iPad lets people select an ‘environment’ to be displayed on-screen behind them – options include a Dubai cityscape and a football stadium.

Also in the fitting rooms, scanners recognise products’ RFID labels and display corresponding information on touchscreen mirrors, allowing shoppers to request alternate styles and sizes.

Designed by British agency Checkland Kindleysides, the DXB Shop area of the store sells Dubai-themed Adidas products, such as t-shirts with custom Dubai x Adidas logos that feature traditional Emirati patterns. For more on how to cater to consumers’ newly local mindsets, see Leaning into Local, part of our Community + Commerce Spotlight. 

Appealing to the 65% of people aged 18-29 in the UAE keen to protect the environment, the LEED-certified flagship store uses fittings made from responsibly sourced plastics and textiles.

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Adidas, The Dubai Mall
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Adidas, The Dubai Mall

Puma’s Gamified Football Experience

When consumers at Puma’s Tel Aviv store pick up football boots within the store’s Skill Cube, on-floor projections display product information and stand-out stats on Puma’s brand ambassadors, such as Brazilian football icon Neymar, adding a sense of theatre to the retail experience.

Also within the Skill Cube – which includes dugout-style seats – they can then trial the boots, while motion and depth sensors allow Puma to track participants as they move. Data captured during sessions is saved for future CRM use and charts the visitor’s position on a digital leaderboard in the waiting area. 

The space was created by global retail design consultancy Green Room.

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Puma, Tel Aviv

Under Armour’s Phygital App Integration

Bidding to position Under Armour as the absolute authority on sports footwear, its store in The Dubai Mall (another Green Room project) demonstrates its technical prowess via an AI-powered 3D scanner, which creates a 360° image of a consumer’s foot to determine which model shoe is the best fit. 

Forging phygital connections, the space also integrates Under Armour’s MapMyRun app, projecting running routes on an on-screen 3D interactive map of Dubai. Visitors can also connect via the app to download training programmes directly onto their devices.

For more, see Global Store Openings: Summer 2021 Trends and Innovative US Athletic Flagships.

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Under Armour, The Dubai Mall
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