The AI-Futtaim Group is a large, tremendously successful conglomerate business. It is headquartered in Dubai, where the culture and warm climate leads citizens to indoor, mall-style shopping to “keep cool” while buying what they need.
But as the Dubai population grew and the distances for people to get to the malls increased, it became clear that AI-Futtaim needed to reach customers in new ways. Brick-and-mortar stores were simply not enough to sustain business growth and support a vision for the future
What’s particularly interesting about AI-Futtaim is that it is a conglomerate company with separate and diverse business divisions for real estate, retail, automotive and services. It needed a powerful online solution that, at its core, was also diverse and flexible in its capabilities.
The goal was to increase customer reach, bring customers more product knowledge, attract site visitors, and encourage repeat site visits. Through the action of reaching more customers, it became clear that customers’ buying behavior was changing as they got more information about products for sale and became more familiar with them before making a purchase. A great example is where the automotive business provides brochure detail about cars for sale but also can arrange to have the car of interest delivered to the buyer’s home to test drive before purchasing. This has resulted in amazing customer satisfaction.
The web team for each business branch also needed the flexibility to set up and maintain a custom digital site that would address the unique needs of each business. The solution needed to be self-sustaining, easy to fix, and have a backup capability that did not require IT to step in to handle. To maximize efficiency, the web teams for each business needed to be able to fix issues and execute backups themselves.
The Path Ahead
Within its current infrastructure, AI-Futtaim has chosen to use a traditional, on-premises DX site for real estate and a DX headless cloud configuration for the automotive business. This proves that these differing environments can work side-by-side, beautifully, providing the power to choose the right setup for any business.
AI-Futtaim speaks highly of the collaboration and support they are getting throughout the digital transformation from both HCL and a local Business Partner, GBM. Both teams were highly responsive and took the time to really understand AI-Futtaim’s fast-moving business so they could deliver knowledgeable guidance and help.
The company’s overall operating expenses have been reduced by 50%, thanks to this transition to a more digitally oriented business.
To make this digital transformation successful, Al-Futtaim learned it needed to:
Stay abreast of each new DX release, to best leverage new capabilities
Assure content is scalable and available on-demand
Keep a keen eye on continuous improvements to increase ROI for the DX platform over time.
Bring business teams, customers and IT along together on the digital journey for checkpoints and course -corrections, as needed.
The HCL DX platform provides us the flexibility and powerful feature set that supports our vision for an excellent buyer’s experience across the differing business types and markets, all through a common framework, look and feel, that makes it easy for our development team to update and maintain.
— AI-Futtaim Group
About the Company
Al-Futtaim Group is a is a large conglomerate company based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The group was founded in the 1930s and expanded rapidly in the 1940s and 1950s to an integrated commercial, industrial, and services organization, with 35K employees, worldwide.
About the Business Partner
Gulf Business Machines (GBM) - With more than 30 years of experience, 7 offices and over 1,500 employees across the region, Gulf Business Machines (GBM) is a leading end-to-end digital solutions provider, offering the region’s broadest portfolio, including industry-leading digital infrastructure, digital business solutions, security and services.