‘MALL OF THE METAVERSE’: DUBAI ANNOUNCES FIRST VIRTUAL SHOPPING CENTRE
Khaleej Times – 4 February 2023
Dubai’s first virtual mall has been announced. The Mall of the Metaverse will represent Majid Al Futtaim in Decentraland, one of the most advanced metaverse platforms.
After multiple stages of testing, Mall of the Metaverse will open to visitors “who are seeking increased digital experiences across retail, entertainment and leisure offerings”.
Inside the mall, customers’ avatars will find Carrefour, VOX Cinemas, THAT Concept Store, Ghawali and Samsung Store, “with many more brands and exciting features in the pipeline”.
Announced at the World Government Summit, the mall is in the initial phase of development as the group looks “closely” at customers’ needs and expectations.
Khalifa bin Braik, CEO of Majid Al Futtaim Asset Management, said the Mall of the Metaverse will be a leading retail and entertainment destination — “and surely a huge attraction for customers who crave digital experiences from their most loved brands”.
Fatima Zada, director of Omnichannels and Digital, Majid Al Futtaim Shopping Malls, highlighted how there has been an increased demand for digital experiences in the last few years.
“We work to leverage behavioural science and data to deliver customers what they want and desire. Our swift consumer observations, followed by an action plan and a series of testing stages, has now led to a fully-fledged project that is a step ahead of online shopping — Mall of the Metaverse.”
The UAE has made several advancements in the metaverse, with three healthcare groups foraying into the virtual world. The Dubai Mall had showcased its Etisalat store in the metaverse last year.
Dubai has a metaverse strategy that aims to support 40,000 virtual jobs and add $4 billion to its economy in five years.