UAE e-commerce "to triple" in 2012

Dubai shopping site says customers are turning to online
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* Dubai - United Arab Emirates

Feb. 19, 2012 - PRLog -- Estimates of e-commerce doubling in the region by 2016 are “off the mark”, according to the founder of a Dubai-based retail website.

Omar Kassim of estimates online sales in the UAE alone will triple this year, making 2012 a tipping point for e-commerce.

“A recent report by Euromonitor suggested e-commerce in the Middle East would double to US$ 2 billion by 2016,” says Kassim. “However, we think that the figure is off the mark. It does not include services sold over the Internet and popular group buying sites which are huge here in the UAE. Based on our own sales, we expect the market to triple in 2012 compared to 2011.”

“ has passed turnover of US$ 1 million in just ten months operating in the UAE and things have really taken off in the last three months. We added to our delivery destinations by bringing on Al Ain and Ajman last week, and are close to full country coverage within the next four to six weeks.

“Customers are more comfortable about using online experiences and are embracing the convenience and cost savings that e-commerce provides.” is an online retailer, with 70% of its sales attributed to the booming smartphone and tablet markets. Major launches such as the iPad 2 and iPhone 4S have boosted sales and increased demand for what Kassim calls “instant gratification” shopping.

“The beauty of shopping online is the convenience,” says Kassim. “Dubai has a mall culture but we are slowing seeing that being eroded away as savvy shoppers want products to get to them minus the hassle.  We deliver to their door, at a time that suits them, and offer better prices than most physical stores due to their higher cost structures.

“Coupon and discount sites like Living Social and have really paved the way for e-commerce here in the UAE,” adds Kassim. “We have seen some general issues in the e-commerce space with regards to delivery and fulfillment, which is something that has always concerned us at JadoPado. That’s why we are unique in having our own inventory and delivery fleet, which means we have a high degree of control over the customer experience – which is helping us to make the difference.”
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