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Delve into Digital Commerce in the Region

ArabNet Team, Dec 03 2017

In the MENA region, e-commerce continues to dominate the digital landscape, with 2/3 of tech investment dollars going into transactional businesses, and marketplaces for services growing exponentially. Beyond pure e-commerce platforms, e-commerce is gaining importance as a channel for all types of traditional businesses, and corporations across industries are investing in and experimenting with new ways of providing on-demand fulfillment of their customer needs.

According to a report by McKinsey & Company, the e-commerce market in the region touched the $40B mark in 2016 and is expected to reach $45B by the end of 2017. Several countries in the region are leading the digital consumer charge, with high smartphone adoption rates and social media use, while other countries with weaker digital penetration are struggling to keep up, noting that these leading GCC countries are among the top users in the world with more than 100% smartphone penetration and more than 70% social media adoption. It’s estimated that eCommerce in Saudi will reach $5.7B in 2017 according to the US Embassy in Saudi, with mobile transactions representing two-thirds of online transactions according to Wamda. 

Digital Commerce

Currently, the MENA region is one of the fastest growing hubs for online businesses and is home to several large ecommerce players.  Acquired by Amazon for $580M, is currently the largest ecommerce player in the Arab World. Souq’s largest rival,, which launched in the UAE in October and will be launching in KSA this month, has more than $1B in pledged investments. The region witnessed has also witnessed quite a few acquisitions this year with Noon acquiring JadoPado and 51% of Namshi.

This year’s Digital Commerce Forum at ArabNet Riyadh will host some of MENA’s latest and leading eCommerce platforms and players. Attendees will delve into digital commerce and learn how it’s gaining ground in MENA, gain insight on travel ecommerce, its models & competition and get up to date on the key acquisitions and investments in the market. To attend the Digital Commerce forum, register for ArabNet Riyadh here



Ronaldo Mouchawar is Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of, the largest e-commerce site in the Arab world, attracting over 45 million visits per month. The online retailer was recently acquired by Amazon for $580 million.


Remo Giovanni Abbondandolo is the General Manager at Travelstart Middle East. Remo was part of the team that founded Africa Internet Accelerator (one of Naspers’ investments), which launched three of the fastest growing e-commerce businesses in South Africa.


Emre Ekmekci is Chief Commercial Officer & Board Member of, Turkey's largest e-commerce player and one of the top 5 fastest growing companies in Europe according to "Internet Retailer”


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