Gifts Today magazine

Middle East ecommerce platform to launch

Ecommerce platform will launch operations in Saudi Arabia and the UAE in January with 20 millions products online from day one

Dubai business magnate Mohamed Alabbar (pictured) has announced the launch of a $1bn regional ecommerce site in a joint venture with the Saudi sovereign wealth fund - Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund (PIF) and other Gulf investors.

At the media launch at Dubai Opera, Alabbar described the new ecommerce venture - - as “game changing".

"We're turning the ecommerce environment in Middle East upside down," he said, "and then we're going to turn it upside down again in another six months."

Alabbar revealed that will have 20 million products on the platform on day one when it launches next January. The average shopping mall in Dubai has 1.5 million goods, he said.

The warehouse facility in Dubai is the size of 60 football pitches, he added.

Investors are initially contributing $1 billion to the project, which will be 50 percent owned by the Saudi sovereign wealth fund, Alabbar said. The other 50 percent will be owned by Alabbar and other regional investors. will launch operations in Saudi Arabia and the UAE, with launches planned for other Arab countries at a later date.

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