Arriverderci! Prada bids the UAE goodbye
It was first heard from the grapevine, and we thought only lunatics would believe something like it would ever happen. Not here. Not in the fashion capital of the Gulf. We’d be kidding ourselves if we said we would have expected Dubai to witness such a horrific moment.
BREAKING NEWS: PRADA HAS PULLED OUT OF THE UAE MARKET.
UPDATE (04-27-2011): Prada and Miu Miu will be back in the UAE through a joint venture between UAE-based luxury conglomerate Al Tayer Insignia and the Prada Group.
What is the UAE’s fashion elite going to do without Prada?
Prada has closed its stores in the UAE, and the party will be over when stocks run out at Saks and Villa Moda. It’s crazy, isn’t it? But it’s true. La Moda has confirmed this news with a management official at luxury fashion retailer Saks Fifth Avenue’s UAE operations. We wanted to ask Saks more questions, but we were advised to go direct to the source and subject the Prada Press Office itself to brutal interrogation.
And so we have. La Moda has sent an inquiry to our favorite guys in Milan and we are awaiting them to respond. And they should respond, no? The amount of the heaps of dirhams that we all have collectively spent on Prada merchandise over the years is no joke, and they owe us Dubai fashionistas an explanation. We’re not protesting the move because it’s surely a business decision and we have no idea what state Prada UAE’s books are in. But the Italian fashion house draws a loyal following in the Emirates and us customers would like to know a few things.
What does this all mean? Where are the customers going to source their favorite products now? Why did they decide to close up shop? Is this a temporary thing? Is Prada ever coming back? Wasn’t the UAE consumer rich enough to keep them afloat? These are just a few of the questions to which we would like some answers.
We’re waiting, Prada. Don’t disappoint us (even further).
UPDATE: Prada has issued a statement on their pull out from the UAE market.
Ufficio Stampa, a staff member at Prada’s press office, Prada’s Ufficio Stampa (Press Office) sent this to La Moda:
We very much appreciated your interest and nice comments about our brand.
In answer to your questions, whilst we confirm that we have terminated our business relationship with Saks Fifth Avenue in the UAE, we also would like to stress that this is a result of a global retail strategy and reorganization.
We can also confirm that Dubai remains one of our priorities, although we are still examining different options and opportunities for a comeback.
So there you go. We know Prada loves us, just not enough to keep their stores here open to serve us. We’ll be waiting for your comeback!
Burj Khalifa graphics courtesy of the The Korea Times