The Middle east Unicorn, Careem to become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Uber, operating as an independent company under the Careem brand and led by Careem founders.
According to Careem CEO and co-founder, Mudassir Sheikha, “Joining forces with Uber will help us accelerate Careem’s purpose of simplifying and improving the lives of people, and building an awesome organisation that inspires. The mobility and broader internet opportunity in the region is massive and untapped, and has the potential to leapfrog our region into the digital future. We could not have found a better partner than Uber under Dara’s leadership to realise this opportunity. This is a milestone moment for us and the region, and will serve as a catalyst for the region’s technology ecosystem by increasing the availability of resources for budding entrepreneurs from local and global
Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said, “This is an important moment for Uber as we continue to expand the strength of our platform around the world. With a proven ability to develop innovative local solutions, Careem has played a key role in shaping the future of urban mobility across the Middle East, becoming one of the most successful startups in the region. Working closely with Careem’s founders, I’m confident we will deliver exceptional outcomes for riders, drivers, and cities, in this fast-moving part of the world,”.
This game-changer deal is conducted right before Uber’s much-anticipated initial public offering that reports have said could value the company at as much as $120 billion.
Is It Global Recognition or the Lifespan of Middle-Eastern Startups?
Airbnb Acqui-hire Egyptian startup Tilt:
In 2017, Airbnb acqui-hire the social payment Egyptian startup Tilt. The final price landed at around $12 million, according to TechCrunch, not including retention packages for a half-dozen engineers.
Amazon Acquires Middle-Eastern Souq.com:
Amazon the retail giant acquired middle eastern e-commerce firm Souq.com back in 2017.
Amazon paid $580 million in cash for Souq, according to filings. Bloomberg previously reported that Amazon was in discussions over an investment at a valuation in excess of $1 billion but, amid rivalry from Emaar’s ambitious Noon.com project and others, an acquisition agreement was reached.
Acquisition on a Global Level:
Amazon to buy Whole Foods Market:
Parallel to Souq.com acquisition, Amazon expands to the brick-and-mortar retail by acquiring organic food chain Whole Foods Market spending $13.7bn (£10.7bn).
Apple Acquired Shazam:
Apple announced Shazam acquisition last years, at $400 million — a figure confirmed to Financial Times by several sources.
According to Oliver Schusser, Apple’s vice president of Apple Music,“Apple and Shazam have a long history together. Shazam was one of the first apps available when we launched the App Store and has become a favorite app for music fans everywhere,” He continued,“With a shared love of music and innovation, we are thrilled to bring our teams together to provide users even more great ways to discover, experience and enjoy music.”
Coca-Cola Company Acquired the Costa Brand:
Last year, Coca-Cola Company acquired the British coffee brand Costa Limited. The U.K. coffee-shop leader Costa acquired by Coca-Cola Company for £3.9Bn ($5.1 billion) in its biggest acquisition yet, pushing the soda pioneer into the fiercely competitive java market.
Arla acquires Mondeléz’s Kraft cheese business in the Middle East:
In 2018, European dairy giant Arla Foods has reached a deal with American brand Mondeléz to acquire its processed cheese business in the Middle East and North Africa, licensed under the Kraft brand.
Arla, which owns the Puck, Lurpak and UHT Milk brands, said it had more than doubled its MENA sales since 2010, making the region its largest market outside Europe.
The transfer gives Arla full ownership of a 66,000-tonne-a-year cheese production plant in Bahrain and the opportunity to further expand in the region, according to the announcement.
The deal is expected to close by the end of May 2019.
Anghami Partners with ACRCloud:
At the end of 2018, Anghami announced its partnership with ACRCloud; the Beijing-based automatic content recognition platform, already works on Alibaba, Baidu, Cartoon Network, DTS, and Xiaomi, among others.
The platform has indexed over 68 million tracks around the world.
Anghami’s strategic partnership is conducted ahead of Apple fully integrating Shazam into its music streaming service following the $400m acquisition.
What do you foresee in Startups like Swvl’s future other MENA Startups? Are you with the global mega companies’ acquisitions? Let us know in the comments.