Dubai’s leading jeweller and watch retailer, Damas, has launched its first production facility in Nad Al Hamar area, Dubai. This move is a part of Damas’ plan to open a large number of jewellery outlets in the UAE and Saudi Arabia. The 20,000 square feet factory is equipped with machines worth Dh15 million and employs 200 experts. It is now capable of producing 40 percent of its needs and is expecting to ramp up to 80 percent by the year 2020. The facility handles 3 tonnes of gold and 180,000 pieces of non-gold jewellery a year. Currently, Damas outsources about half of its production to near 200 facilities in Hong Kong, India and China. It also has a workshop in Jumeirah Lakes Towers, where its design hub is based, beside Deira Gold Souq.
Damas was originally founded in 1907 with a small facility in Syria and set up its first retail shop in 1959 at Deira Gold Souq. The company now has a total of 144 retail stores in the UAE, excluding its franchise outlets. Damas has over 100 stores in the Arabian Gulf region. It plans to open about five more in the UAE by the end of 2016.
The gold jewellery sector in the UAE is getting crowded. Recently India’s Kalyan Jewellers has opened two production plants in the UAE since its inception in 2014. Malabar Gold and Diamonds also has two factories in the UAE through its division Al Nazha Gold Jewellery Factory.