Harvey Nichols to open its doors in Saudi Arabia

Harvey Nichols, the fashion-led department store beloved of Jennifer Saunders and Joanna Lumley in the TV comedy series Absolutely Fabulous, is to open a store in the Saudi Arabian capital of Riyadh – its first outside the UK.

A licensing agreement signed by Harvey Nichols entitles Saudi development group the King Faisal Foundation to use the Harvey Nichols name for an 80,000 sq ft department store at a new retail development in the city.

The new store has already been nicknamed “Arab Fab” after the BBC comedy.

Harvey Nichols has included strict guidelines in the agreement, which guarantee that the new store will stock ranges from a number of famous fashion labels. They are likely to include names such as La Croix and Gucci.

A spokesman for Harvey Nichols says: “We can’t say which names will be there, but Harvey Nichols has a good deal of brand protection in the agreement.”

Harvey Nichols last week appointed Mother to its &£1m advertising account, after a pitch involving Fallon McElligott, Wieden & Kennedy and incumbent Travis Sully Harari.

The retailer, which has stores in London and Leeds, and also owns the Oxo Tower restaurant overlooking the River Thames, has plans to open a store in Edinburgh next year.

A decision on whether its fourth and final UK outlet will open in Manchester or Newcastle is expected to be made by the end of the year.

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