Special: The $1bn e-commerce company Noon searches for acquisitions

Twelve noon, the $1 billion e-commerce platform backed by billionaire entrepreneur Mohammed Alabbar, is browsing for acquisitions to strengthen its operations, and brand-new retail collaborations to serve an expanding base of shoppers.The company struck

a partnership in 2015 with Kuwait’s MH Alshaya, which also purchased a concealed stake in the venture.

“We recognise we’ll need to partner with other business to accomplish our objectives,” said Faraz Khalid, president of Midday, told The National. “The team is always taking a look at chances to get, partner and work with business that could help further the company, and we are talking to a lot of people.”

Midday, in which the Saudi sovereign wealth fund holds a stake, launched last year amidst heated competitors amongst e-commerce gamers to capture a burgeoning number of online consumers in a region. Throughout the region per capita income and web penetration are high, specifically amongst mobile owners.Potential acquisitions for Twelve noon might consist of innovation and courier business, with a particular concentrate on start-ups, though Mr Khalid would not be made use of the details.”I think Noon has a function to play in helping start-ups scale in the area, so we’re talking with one-person operations through to large companies that might help us scale. There’s an interesting set of chances facing us,” he said. ____________ Find out more: Emaar to build’tech-embedded shopping mall’at Dh10bn retail complex Kuwait’s Alshaya invests in$1bn e-commerce platform Midday ahead of its launch

Midday launches in the UAE, using regional e-commerce boom

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The business is contending for a piece of the Arabian Gulf’s rapidly broadening e-commerce market, which is anticipated to reach $20bn by 2020, according to consultancy AT Kearney. With e-commerce accounting for less than 3 percent of total Middle East retail sales compared to more than 10 per cent in the US, there is significant room for growth.Amazon’s purchase of e-commerce platform Souq.com for $580 million in 2017, the greatest foreign acquisition in a regional start-up, has directed a spotlight towards the Middle East’s e-commerce industry.Noon notes more

than 10,000 brand names on its platform, and fashion and way of life and customer electronic devices are the most popular categories, according to Mr Khalid. He would not disclose figures on incomes, site users or overall sales, but stated Midday has recorded “hyper-growth” month-on-month throughout several metrics since its launch and he expects this to continue as the business increases operations.It currently has a fleet of delivery vans in 40 cities across the UAE and Saudi Arabia, three distribution storage facilities in Dubai, Riyadh and Jeddah, and plans to develop more in the coming years.” We are developing a lot more facilities– both digital and physical– to service the region.”There are likewise plans to “grow our existing locations”, he included, however declined to specify where. Twelve noon will work to engage newbie buyers, shorten delivery times

and encourage repeat visits through new value-add services including after-sales care and setups, over the coming months, he said.A key plank of the technique to expand Noon’s reach is through collaborations with shopping mall owners and franchise

operators like Alshaya.”We are speaking to [potential partners] and see Midday as a platform to drive retail on -and offline– we don’t take on shopping malls, however complement them,”he stated. In Saudi Arabia, Midday’s partnership with Tadawul-listed retail firm United Electronic devices Company (eXtra )saw the 2 parties introduce

the eXtra Mega Sale this year, through which customers were motivated to purchase brand names at additional’s 40-plus shops and order via Noon. A similar omni-channel technique intends to drive sales at Yellow Friday, the greatest sale Midday will supervise to date, which starts this month.” It’s an important milestone in our discussion with retailers, that they feel safe adequate to partner with a pure-play web business to perform a big part of their distribution work,”Mr Khalid said.Mr Alabbar imagines e-commerce as a large part of business model for Emaar Properties ‘$2.7 bn “tech-embedded”shopping center, Dubai Square, announced in July.

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