News Column

Use of digital devices in Saudi Arabia and UAE on the rise

August 20, 2014

Khaldoon Tabaza


The time for online marketplaces in Saudi Arabia and other parts of the Arab world has come, with the number of Internet users reaching more than 135 million, according to Khaldoon Tabaza, founder and managing director of IMENA Holdings.

"The proliferation of smartphone devices in Saudi Arabia and the UAE has also reached 84 percent," added Tabaza, whose company is an investor and online operator of online businesses in the Middle East and North Africa.

He added that during the past two years, several marketplace categories have emerged as mature categories in the Arab world, with undisputed leaders operating efficient marketplaces and growing record rates.

"Marketplaces have been at the core of commerce for a thousand years, and they continue to serve in gathering merchants and people who come together for the purchase and sale of goods and services," he said.

In the automotive sector, traditional car dealership markets have now been replaced by startups that allow users to sell their cars in record time and with a fraction of the hassle of selling through traditional car dealerships.

" is one such startup; it was founded in the UAE and has now expanded into Saudi Arabia and Turkey," he said.

Another is the automotive section of the leading Arabic classifieds website,, which offers more cars for sale and requests to buy cars at any traditional car marketplace in the Arab world, all at a fraction of a at a traditional car dealership and with unsurpassed convenience and market efficiency.

He added that in the transportation sector, startups like EasyTaxi now allow users in Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Kuwait, Qatar and Bahrain to order taxis with a tap of a button on their smartphones, using a free app that automatically matches users with taxi drivers nearby.

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Source: Arab News (Saudi Arabia)

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