Noon.com may go for IPO in '5 to 7 years', says Alabbar

New e-commerce platform aims to become a “dominant” online retail portal in the Middle East
Noon.com may go for IPO in '5 to 7 years', says Alabbar
Mohamed Alabbar, chairman of Emaar Properties, confirmed that Aramex will be integral part of the project.
By Parag Deulgaonkar
Sun 13 Nov 2016 04:01 PM

Noon.com, the Gulf's new $1-billion e-commerce platform, may list in the coming years, according to UAE businessman Mohamed Alabbar.

“You have to look at five to seven years unless the environment changes,” he said after unveiling plans for the website on Sunday, which aims to become a “dominant” online retail portal in the Middle East.

“My shareholders are fully committed to the business plan, committed to the industry and committed to the region. So there is full support as long as the management performs achieves their KPIs.”

The online shopping website will not include a food category to start when it goes live in January 2017 in the UAE and Saudi Arabia. The 20 million products will be spread over various categories such as home furnishing, electronics, books and fashion.

Two warehouse facilities are under construction at Dubai South and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, each of which will each be the size of 60 football pitches.

Alabbar, chairman of Emaar Properties, confirmed that Aramex will be an integral part of the project. “It will be the main back up for our operations,” he said.

This year, he led two investor groups to buy a combined 16.45 percent stake in the Dubai-bourse listed logistics firm.

Fodhil Benturquia, CEO of Noon.com, said while product prices will be competitive, the primary focus will be on customer service.

“Customers do look at price but that is not the only thing. They want a great experience, they want to trust you, they want to make sure that the products that you are selling are authentic, are delivered on time, and these are all the things we are doing for our customers.”

Riyadh-headquartered Noon.com will also allow small vendors who are currently selling products on Instagram to sell products on the portal.

Benturquia declined to reveal details of the sales/revenues target set for 2017, insisting that the plan is to build numbers using the portal during its first year.

“We have our targets but we will first build capacity and then we will capture more customers,” he said.

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