Dubai-based watch retailer Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons announced on Wednesday it had teamed up with investment firm HAMG to acquire Abu Dhabi’s Al Manara Jewellery.
Established in 1973, Al Manara Jewellery operates a range of renowned brands, including Patek Philippe, Chopard, Audemars Piguet, Harry Winston, Piaget, Christian Dior, Officine Panerai, Baume & Mercier, Hublot, and Tag Heuer.
Family-owned Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons is the largest retailer of Swiss Brand watches in the Middle East and currently has over 50 watch brands across 52 locations in the UAE.
"We are a family-owned and run company which has been built on passion, trust, loyalty, and to be entrusted by Al Manara Jewellery is a testament to their confidence and sharing of the same values and principles. The acquisition was a strategic decision for Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons and the partnership with HAMG in Abu Dhabi was a natural fit given their experience in the luxury sector and the synergies brought to the partnership which will accrue to Al Manara International Jewellery," said Abdul Hamied Seddiqi, vice-chairman of Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons and Chairman of the board of directors at Al Manara International Jewellery.
The UAE has been the Middle East's biggest market for luxury watches in 2011, according to data released by the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry.
The UAE was the world's ninth biggest market for watches, worth US$658m between January and November 2011. This positioned the Gulf state one place higher than the UK.
This represents a near-20 percent increase on 2010 when the UAE market was worth US$550m, the data showed.
Globally, Hong Kong was ranked the largest market for Swiss watches in 2011, worth US$3.9bn, nearly 30 percent more than the previous year.
In the Middle East, Saudi Arabia was ranked second with a market worth US$273m, a 12 percent increase on 2010.
Qatar and Kuwait also featured in the top 30 markets in the world for the first 11 months of 2011 with imports of US$100m and US$71m respectively.