Abu Dhabi-based LuLu Group said it will open six hypermarkets in Malaysia in a collaboration with state-owned Felda. The first LuLu Hypermarket will debut in Kuala Lumpur in 2014, followed by five others in the coming years, said Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin during a trip to the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The LuLu Group has agreed to invest US$200 million (RM647 million) in its Malaysian hypermarkets.
The choice of Jalan Masjid India for the first outlet of the Middle Eastern-origin LuLu is significant because the location is where the the target consumers – Malay Muslim consumers are located. Muslims account for 60.4% of Malaysia’s population. At the moment, there is a Mydin Wholesale Emporium in the area catering to the predominately Malay and Bangladeshi foreign worker clienteles. For LuLu, Mydin will be its closest competitor in Malaysia. The homegrown retailer has a corporate vision of becoming the “world’s leading distributor of competitive “Halal” goods and services.”
LuLu certainly will be a subject of curiosity for Chinese consumers. In Cantonese, “你当我Lulu?” means “Do you think I am stupid/can be cheated easily?”Once the retailer has attracted curious consumers into the store, the price, the ambiance, the location and the product mix will determine if shoppers will shop at LuLu again.