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Emaar Malls Buys Namshi

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Emaar Malls has fully acquired Namshi, the leading regional fashion e-commerce retailer. This follows acquiring the remaining stake of Global Fashion Group (GFG) in Namshi, in an all-cash transaction of AED 475.5 million (Euro 114.3 million; US$ 129.5 million).

GFG and Emaar Malls entered into a strategic partnership in 2017 when Emaar Malls acquired a 51% stake in Namshi. Over the past two years GFG has worked together with Emaar Malls and the Namshi team to strengthen the company’s offering by bringing global expertise in e-commerce and shared resources such as global brand acquisitions and technology innovations to the platform.

Emaar Malls’ full acquisition of Namshi is a natural evolution of the company’s digitally-driven strategy to leverage the growing e-commerce market in the Middle East and North Africa region. The full acquisition reinforces the position of Emaar Malls in the rapidly growing online market in the Middle East, complementing its physical retail assets portfolio. 

Namshi has a 1.2 million and growing active customer base, and recorded impressive growth in the past two years, having recorded sales across UAE and the KSA of AED 849 million (US$ 231.3 million) in 2018, an increase of 16 per cent compared to the previous year.

The deal will further cement Namshi as among the region’s fastest growing e-commerce fashion destinations with Emaar Malls to power its growth through the addition of more brands, enhancing its logistics infrastructure and strengthening its geographic outreach.

Mohamed Alabbar, Chairman of Emaar Properties, and Board Member of Emaar Malls, said: “The remarkable growth achieved by Namshi underlines the potential for fashion e-commerce in the region, where, every day, a larger number of people shop online to meet their fashion aspirations. With the consolidation of our stake in Namshi, we are highlighting our commitment to position Emaar Malls for growth over the next decade and to create outstanding value for all our shareholders through our omnichannel strategy.” 

Patrick Bousquet-Chavanne, Chief Executive Officer of Emaar Malls, added: “Namshi is a remarkable success story that reflects the changing shopping habits of young fashion-conscious customers in the region. The majority acquisition of the company in 2017 had heralded a new era for Emaar Malls in building its online presence. Today’s acquisition underlines the acceleration of our ‘Digital Forward’ strategy to leverage the growing e-commerce market in the Middle East and North Africa region. This will enable us to further accelerate the talents and operational synergies between the two businesses, as well as drive the growth of Namshi by drawing on the superb retail infrastructure of Emaar Malls. We thank the GFG team for their valuable support in driving the growth of Namshi in recent years.”

Founded in 2011, Namshi was the first to provide an online lifestyle destination for fashion and beauty to the MENA region, introducing a world of possibilities for millions of people, at the click of a button. Now, Namshi showcases a selection of 700 brands includes leading global names, exclusive in-house labels, the latest sports collaborations, the best from beauty, activewear, kidswear and more, all carefully curated to meet the aspirations of the customers.

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WhatsApp Now Transcribes Voice Messages on Android

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Calling all Android users who dread lengthy voice messages: rejoice! WhatsApp is rolling out voice message transcription to its beta app.

This feature, already available for iOS users since May 2024, is now part of the WhatsApp Beta version 2.24.15.5 for Android. It automatically converts voice messages into text, making it easier and faster to understand conversations.

Currently, transcriptions are supported in five languages: English, Spanish, Portuguese (Brazil), Russian, and Hindi, with more languages promised in the future. Users opting in will need to download an additional data package to ensure all transcripts are generated directly on their devices, maintaining message privacy.

This update brings Android users closer to iOS users in terms of features and highlights WhatsApp’s commitment to improving the overall user experience.

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WhatsApp Trials AI Image Generator

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Calling all creative minds! WhatsApp is testing a new feature that uses AI to generate personalized avatars. Imagine yourself as a superhero, chilling on a beach, or even exploring space – the possibilities are endless! WABetaInfo discovered this feature in the latest Android beta update.

Here’s the tech behind the magic: a combo of user images, text descriptions, and Meta’s powerful AI, Llama. “Take photos of yourself once, then imagine yourself in any setting from the forest to outer space,” reads the screenshot on WhatsApp. The way it works is in the Meta AI Chat: users can type “Imagine in…” or “@Meta AI imagine me…” as a text prompt. A user’s likeness will then be used to generate the personalized image.

While there’s no official release date yet, this exciting feature is entirely optional. It joins the recently launched in-app custom sticker maker, showcasing WhatsApp’s commitment to fostering creativity within the app. This, alongside their ongoing development of AI chat functionalities, highlights Meta’s focus on making WhatsApp a platform that embraces both technological innovation and user expression.

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YouTube’s New Eraser Tool Now Removes Songs Without Ruining Your Videos

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Good news for creators! YouTube has rolled out a major update to its eraser tool, allowing them to effortlessly remove copyrighted music from their videos without sacrificing other audio elements like dialogue or sound effects.

In a recent video, YouTube acknowledged that the previous version of the tool needed improvement in terms of accuracy. This new iteration addresses that concern by utilizing an AI-powered algorithm that precisely detects and removes unwanted songs while leaving the rest of the audio intact.

However, YouTube’s support page advises creators that the algorithm might not always achieve perfect separation. As an alternative, creators can opt to “Mute all sound in the claimed segments,” effectively silencing any portions potentially containing copyrighted material.

Once the edit is finalized, YouTube automatically removes the content ID claim, a system designed to identify the use of copyrighted material within videos on the platform. This allows creators to proceed with their uploads without copyright concerns.

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