Alshaya partners with Princess Nora Bint AbdulRahman University to expand training and employment opportunities for Saudi women in retail
Kuwait, 22 February 2015: M.H. Alshaya Co., the leading international retail franchise operator, and the Princess Nora Bint Abdul Rahman University in Riyadh have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to build a strategic partnership and further develop Alshaya’s successful Retail Academy, with the aim of ensuring that more Saudi women are trained in retail skills and employed in the retail sector.
Mr Mohammed Abdulaziz Alshaya, the Executive Chairman of M.H. Alshaya Co., and H.E. Dr Huda Al-Ameel, Rector of the Princess Nora Bint AbdulRahman University, signed the agreement last week at a ceremony at the university campus in Riyadh.
The new partnership covers three main areas – training, recruitment, and investment – to enhance the skills of Saudi women and improve their career prospects in the Saudi retail sector. The agreement will see Alshaya relocate its successful Retail Academy from its current location in Riyadh to the campus of Princess Nora Bint AbdulRahman University.
The partnership will allow the Alshaya Retail Academy to expand the scope of its operations, both increasing the number of trainees it can accept and giving students of the University access to additional modules in practical retail skills, such as customer service, communication and sales. The relocation will not affect the Academy’s existing eligibility requirements, which require that prospective trainees simply have a high school certificate.
“It’s a great opportunity for our female students to receive specialised retail training from Alshaya, which is a leading retail company,” said Dr Al-Ameel. “We are delighted that we will create better access to training and recruitment in the retail sector, right here from our campus in Riyadh. This is just the first step in our partnership, and we hope we will build on it the near future.”
Alshaya will also operate a recruitment office on campus to help female students have better access to employment opportunities at Alshaya. With over 600 stores and 40 international brands in KSA, Alshaya can offer Saudi women a range of career opportunities in retail, which is one of the fastest-growing industries in the Kingdom.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, Mr Alshaya said Alshaya was committed to training Saudi women and developing their skills. “Princess Nora Bint AbdulRahman University shares our vision of helping women contribute to the growth of the economy in KSA. This partnership will help us support more Saudi women, to provide them with much-needed retail skills, and offer them access to careers that will fulfill their future ambitions,” he said.
The Alshaya Retail Academy was established in Riyadh in December 2012 in partnership with the Ministry of Labour’s Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF). It provides Saudi women with specialised training on retail skills, prepares them to join the retail market, and offers them guaranteed jobs when they graduate. From a zero base in 2012, Alshaya has made great progress in creating roles for women and now employs more than 1,600 women across its business in KSA.
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About M.H. Alshaya Co.
M.H. Alshaya Co. is a leading international franchise operator for over 70 of the world’s most recognised retail brands including Starbucks, H&M, Mothercare, Debenhams, American Eagle Outfitters, P.F. Chang’s, The Cheesecake Factory, Victoria’s Secret, Boots, Pottery Barn and KidZania. The company operates over 2,600 stores across diverse customer sectors: Fashion & Footwear, Health & Beauty, Food, Optics, Pharmacy, Home Furnishings and Leisure & Entertainment.
Alshaya’s stores can be found in markets across the Middle East and North Africa, Russia, Turkey and Europe and the company employs more than 40,000 people from over 110 nationalities.
The company has established itself as the industry leader across these territories through a combination of local market understanding and a comprehensive commitment to customer service. Growth in each of its operating divisions and brands is supported by continuous investment in talent and infrastructure. It applies best practices in retail operations, merchandising, marketing, information technology, logistics, real estate, human resources and financial controls.
M.H. Alshaya Co. is the retail business of the Alshaya Group, which was founded in Kuwait in 1890 and today represents one of the most dynamic companies in the Middle East. In addition to its retail operations, the Alshaya Group is active in a number of other sectors including real estate, automotive, hotels, trading and investments. Learn more about the company at http://www.alshaya.com or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/Alshaya.