Aramex seeking up to two e-commerce acquisitions

E-commerce is growing in the Gulf region, where high GDP per capita and rising mobile penetration rates are fuelling a boom in online shopping.
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Aramex is seeking up to two acquisitions in e-commerce this year as the Dubai-based courier company maintains its forecast to boost profits by at least 10%, says its chief executive Hussein Hachem.

The company is looking at light-asset e-commerce companies, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa, South East Asia and the US, reports The National.

E-commerce is growing in the Gulf region, where high GDP per capita and rising mobile penetration rates are fuelling a boom in online shopping.

A 2013 report released by PayPal and Ipsos predicted the e-commerce market in the Middle East will be worth $15 billion this year. 

Aramex, which generates about 50% of its income from outside the Middle East, forsees e-commerce growth in Sub-Saharan Africa.

“We will focus on introducing e-payment gateways and allowing the African consumer to go online and shop from international commerce websites,” said Hachem.

Regarding Iran and the removal of sanctions, Aramex expects a rebound in logistics growth once the sanctions relief list is released and businesses are allowed to resume normal operations.

Most products heading to Iran are expected to be sourced from UAE’s ports and free zones, Mr Hachem added.

He also said it is too soon to tell what impact the recent cut in diesel prices in the UAE will have on the logistics sector.

For Aramex, most of its lorries cross the UAE borders and often refuel outside the UAE, where prices can be cheaper.

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