Amazon-owned regional e-commerce giant Souq.com has announced that it has acquired Wing.ae, a marketplace for merchants and couriers based in the UAE.
This is the online retailer’s first purchase after its own acquisition by global e-commerce giant Amazon and follows up on its previous investment in Wing.ae back in 2016.
It will now be acquiring 100% of Wing.ae, a statement said.
The statement said that the acquisition would let Wing.ae invest in growing its same and next day delivery service in the region for its customers, which includes Souq as well.
Offering the reasoning behind the purchase, Ronaldo Mouchawar, Souq.com CEO & co-founder, said that delivery is key to the e-commerce business and Wing.ae provides customers with more convenience for their same and next day delivery.
Muzaffar Karabev, CEO and co-founder of WING.ae, said that while UAE is a leading e-commerce hub in the region, there are logistics supply gaps in the e-commerce arena and this is what Wing.ae can plug.
Last-mile delivery has always been a headache for e-commerce players in the region and a key business target for Souq.com.
In an interview last year with Inc. Arabia, Mouchawar highlighted these problems.
“The Arab world is 200 million people strong, but they sit in 22 countries. It’s great that we have one culture and one language, and so it’s quite easy to communicate with the customer. But the actual act of shipping someone his purchase is not so easy, to understate it of course,” Mouchawar said then.
“What differentiates [our logistics arm] is our use of technology in the way the network was made. Mobile phones…geo-locations…communications…they make last-mile fulfillment easier. We want to further integrate mobile phone technology to a point where the cost of shipping comes down…and it’s cost effective for a shopper to buy from us,” he says.
Souq.com currently features more than 8.4 million products across 31 categories online and attracts over 45 million visits per month, with localized operations in Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Egypt.