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Amazon to acquire Middle East online retailer Souq

RBR Staff Writer Published 30 March 2017

Online retail giant Amazon has agreed to acquire Middle East e-commerce firm Souq.com for an undisclosed price.

Amazon’s agreement comes just a day after UAE-based Emaar Malls had confirmed bidding $800m to acquire Souq. However, it was not approved by the stakeholders in Souq.

Souq will work in tandem with the American online retailer to expand product inventory for customers all around the world.

Founded 12 years ago, Souq is said to be the biggest online retail and marketplace platform in the Middle East. Its inventory has over 8.4 million products falling in 31 different categories.

Souq has regional operations in Saudi Arabia, Egypt and UAE.

Amazon International Consumer senior vice president Russ Grandinetti said the two companies have a common DNA wherein they are both driven by customers, invention along with long-term thinking.

Grandinetti said: “SOUQ.com pioneered e-commerce in the Middle East, creating a great shopping experience for their customers. We're looking forward to both learning from and supporting them with Amazon technology and global resources.

“And together, we’ll work hard to provide the best possible service for millions of customers in the Middle East.”

Souq.com CEO and co-founder Ronaldo Mouchawar said that the Middle East firm is guided by many of the same principles as the Amazon. He also called the acquisition as a crucial step forward in expanding its e-commerce footprint on behalf of customers in the region.

Mouchawar added: “By becoming part of the Amazon family, we'll be able to vastly expand our delivery capabilities and customer selection much faster, as well as continue Amazon's great track record of empowering sellers.”

The acquisition is expected to be closed this year after meeting all the necessary closing conditions.

Image: Amazon has reached an agreement to acquire Souq. Photo: courtesy of SOUQ.com.