By Angela Sutherland
Tejari, the Middle East’s business-to-business (B2B) electronic marketplace, has announced a partnership with Saudi Arabia’s Technology Investments Company, a joint stock company specialising in IT, telecoms and other knowledge-based industries.
Tejari, the Middle East’s business-to-business (B2B) electronic marketplace, has announced a partnership with Saudi Arabia’s Technology Investments Company, a joint stock company specialising in IT, telecoms and other knowledge-based industries. The partnership will serve the online procurement needs of the private and government sectors in the Kingdom, aiming for rapid expansion in its first year of operation.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), a market that represents 60% of regional spending in all key economic sectors, is a crucial part of the organisation’s regional expansion strategy. “The Saudi market for e-business and e-government services remains the largest in the Middle East. Business development opportunities are unmatched anywhere in the region,” says Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, Tejari board member and UAE Minister of Economy and Planning.
The deal comes at a time when KSA is witnessing major growth in internet usage, with 300,000 new users per year. In addition, the Saudi e-commerce market segment is expected to reach $15 billion by 2008, primarily dominated by B2B transactions. With a reputation for quality and service throughout the Middle East, Tejari is realising significant achievement with its regional expansion goal.
“Since we launched our first venture outside the UAE, in Jordan in 2002, hundreds of organisations in seven countries have realised the efficiencies that online procurement delivers,” says Omar Hijazi, CEO of Tejari. Greater involvement in the Gulf States has long been at the heart of the company’s strategy for widening its reach in the region. “The Saudi launch was a fundamental priority for us,” he adds.
“Tejari Saudi Arabia is being created specifically to enable both the private and government sectors in the country to realise the business benefits facilitated by online procurement, including dramatic cost savings, greater efficiencies and enhanced market reach,” explains Abdulrahman Mazi, managing director of Technology Investments Company.
“Saudi Arabia is one of the most advanced countries in the region in terms of e-commerce infrastructure. Most of the necessary components are in place including e-commerce law, PKI infrastructure and the electronic banking settlement system,” says Mazi. The partners in Tejari Saudi Arabia will be led by the recently established Saudi Joint Stock Company, Technology Investments Company, and will include National Information Systems (NIS), the developer of Tejari Saudi Arabia.