A recent survey commissioned by Seamless Middle East 2017, reveals that 48 percent of GCC residents prefer to shop online. The survey also suggested that 33 percent of respondents stating that online shopping is just as safe as offline shopping.
However, despite the willingness of GCC residents to fully embrace e-commerce, 34 percent of survey respondents claimed that a lack of confidence in payment security deters them from shopping online. Also, 29 percent of UAE respondents still feel that offline shopping is more secure, with only 31 percent considering online shopping equally as safe.
“The existing appetite for online shopping in the Middle East poses a promising opportunity for international and regional investors in the e-commerce sector. The Arab Federation of e-commerce will play a central role in supporting and advising the public and private sectors in the Arab states to ensure continuous growth and further development of e-commerce in the region, as we strive to capture a fair share of the global digital industry,” commented His Excellency Dr. Eng. Ali Al Khouri, First Deputy Chairman of the Arab E-commerce Union, and Chairman for the Supreme Committee.
The Arab Federation for e-Commerce (AFEC) revealed last month that the region’s current share of the e-commerce market only represents one percent of the global market; however, the survey results highlight the increasing opportunity for e-commerce in the region.
Amna Lootah, Assistant Director General, Finance and Commercial at Dubai Airport Freezone Authority (DAFZA), said: “At DAFZA, we provide vibrant support to businesses across all sectors operating within the Freezone, including the necessary support system for the e-commerce sector, which is now booming due to the growing popularity of online shopping in Dubai, the UAE, the entire region, and the rest of the world. This also complements the Dubai Plan 2021 to become a leading smart city and to diversify the economy. We will continuously work to contribute to the local sector’s strength to ensure that it keeps pace with the ever-evolving international developments and trends.”
Commenting on the topic of payment security in the region, Eric Claudel, Senior Vice President Banking & Payment Solutions for the CISMEA region at Gemalto, the world leader in digital technology said: “The current and projected growth of e-commerce in the region has facilitated and encouraged accelerated development of digital payment experiences. The demand for optimized payments experience – in terms of speed, convenience and multi-channel accessibility but most importantly in terms of security – is growing at a fast pace. The key to ensuring customer satisfaction is delivering a seamless experience through secure, frictionless and innovative payment solutions.”
Joseph Ridley, General Manager of Seamless Middle East at Terrapinn, concluded: “E-commerce is a hot topic globally and key players in the industry are showing increased interest in the Middle East – the Souq.com acquisition by Amazon is a prime example. Seamless Middle East provides a platform for e-commerce, payments and retail industry professionals to explore the potential of the market through knowledge sharing, as well as showcasing new products and technologies to key stakeholders within the region.”
The survey was conducted by YouGov in March 2017, with over 2,700 participants from across the GCC including the United Arab Emirates, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Oman, Bahrain, Kuwait and Qatar.
Canon Europe Buys Kite.ly
Canon Europe today announced that it has acquired Kite.ly, the London-based mobile ecommerce platform specialising in personalised print. Kite.ly adds an important new focus area into Canon’s digital services portfolio, enabling the company to offer a print ecosystem unrivalled in scope. This acquisition is in line with Canon’s ambition to play a part in every image taken and to make image printing accessible to all via any device.
Alberto Spinelli, Senior Director of Digital Services at Canon Europe, says: “Bringing Kite.ly into the Canon group of companies is our latest move to expand Canon’s digital services offering, by making mobile printing ubiquitous. There is a fast-growing trend of consumers who want to shop for customised products and do it in an easy way from their mobile devices. The combination of Canon’s high quality printing technologies and Kite.ly’s easy-to-use solutions will create an unrivalled portfolio of print products, accessible to customers everywhere through existing and new imaging apps.”
Charlie Carpenter, CEO and co-founder of Kite.ly: “Today is a huge day for the Kite.ly team, reflecting the success of our relentless ambition to deliver a mobile personalised print solution, globally. We are excited to combine our innovative technology platform with Canon’s digital services portfolio to lead a new print era together. We are inspired that Canon shares our vision to become the internet’s print button, embedded into any imaging app or website. Kite.ly hosts hundreds of app clients around the world and together with Canon we will be able to enhance their service, to help them generate new revenue and engage with their users in a much more meaningful way.”
Kite.ly is joining Canon’s group of companies and brands that offer complementary digital services, including Lifecake and irista, helping the company create a complete imaging ecosystem for consumers – from capture, reliving, sharing and printing, via easy to use mobile apps and websites. The acquisition will also allow Canon’s B2B partners and customers to explore new business opportunities, whilst retailers will be able to offer a complete end-to-end online personalised print solution to their customers, both online and in-store. Print service providers will be able to easily plug the Canon-Kite.ly solution into their existing infrastructures and gain access to new revenue streams.
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