Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund is one of several previous investors and backers set to help elevate Noon into a serious Amazon rival.
MENA e-commerce platform Noon.com is going to be receiving $2 billion in financing over the next three to four years from investors, which include Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund.
The MENA region has been slow to adapt to e-commerce in comparison to other regions. Although the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns last year were able to push consumers to shift to online shopping and food delivery. Currently, e-commerce accounts for 2 to 2.5 percent of total retail in the region, compared with 20 percent to 22 per cent in the West.
In 2016, chairman of Emaar Properties Mohamed Alabbar was able to raise $1 billion from investors including Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF) to create Noon.com. Almost six years later, it has about 4 million daily users and operates in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt and is looking to expand to other countries in the MENA region. “Traffic is growing on a monthly basis,” Alabbar said. “We’re easily doubling every year and the volume of package delivery is up almost 2.5 times.”
The investment will help the company upgrade its infrastructure and speed up deliveries, as it pushes into grocery delivery