Souq.com, the leading e-commerce site in Arab world, has raised a second round of investment worth $75 million from South African multinational Naspers Limited. Though the amount of stakes changing hands has not been disclosed, the overall valuation of the company after the new round is estimated to reach as high as $400 million.
Naspers and Tiger Global of the US have previously invested in the e-commerce platform a total of $40 million. After the new deal, souq.com, which is often dubbed as ‘the Amazon of the Middle East’ has now become the highest funded internet business in the region.
Founded in 2005, Souq.com has rapidly grown to be a major player in Arab e-commerce market, currently with more than 62. million registered users and 23 million visits per month. It offers over 400,000 products ranging from cosmetics and personal care to gadgets and movies. Its main rivals include Namshi and MarkaVIP.
Ronaldo Mouchawar, co-founder and CEO of Souq.com said that the new funding will be spent in mobile technologies and innovation. According to a recent PayPal study, the e-commerce volume in MENA region will reach $15 billion by 2015, 10% of which is expected to come from mobile.
Wissam Daoud, the CTO of the company, predicts that the mobile sales will constitute 60% of their sales by 2015. The figure is around 40% as of today.