Noon’s partnership with eBay will “localise a global experience” by giving customers in the UAE and Saudi Arabia access to products that are currently only available through e-commerce websites based outside of the region, according to CEO Faraz Khalid.
Speaking to Arabian Business on Wednesday, Khalid said that noon powered by eBay – which will be available to customers in the second half of 2018 – hopes to combine the large inventory of eBay with a shopping experience tailored to customers in the UAE and Saudi Arabia.
“Customers across the region have had access to global e-commerce sites for some time now, but the experience is not that great. There is no reliability in terms of experience,” he said. “On the other hand, there are local platforms that provide a more reliable, more controlled experience to customers in the region.”
The new partnership, Khalid added, is “about bridging that gap and making a global catalogue available with a better end-user experience.”
“We also plugged that inventory in what we consider our best-in-class supply chain,” he noted. “Customers can also shop in Arabic. It’s localising a global experience.”
Khalid also added that, at the moment, noon and eBay are working on a number of projects to activate the partnership, which will be available simultaneously in the UAE and Saudi Arabia.
As part of the partnership, noon and eBay will also explore joint opportunities in marketing, know-how and best practices sharing in a bid to help grow online shopping in the region, noon said in a statement.
“We see this as a long-term partnership,” Khalid said. “We can learn from eBay, but we will also give them feedback.”
Additionally, Khalid said he hopes that he hopes that noon powered by eBay can help encourage more local customers to use e-commerce portals for their shopping needs.
“For e-commerce to become a larger part of everyday life, you need to be able to find everything online,” he said. “Underwriting it with a local name and a local brand creates that trust that you can shop online. That’s a very powerful thing and we think that can trigger a new wave of consumer behaviour and consumption. It’s a journey though.”
No plans for IPO
While in 2016 noon founder Mohammed Alabbar said he expected an IPO in five to seven years, when asked Khalid said that it isn’t something that is currently planned.
“There’s a lot of work to do. We don’t think about exits or IPOs at this point,” he said.