Aramex eyeing expansion of e-commerce business
Aramex CEO has said the Dubai-based firm is pursuing partnerships with logistics and technology companies to expand its e-commerce business after it posted a 3 percent drop in its third-quarter net profit.
The company, which was formed in 1982 as an express wholesaler and now operates across 60 countries, expedited its plans in July to expand business into other sectors after two investor groups, led by Dubai billionaire Mohamed Alabbar, bought a combined 16.45 percent stake in it.
"Looking ahead, we are pursuing partnerships with innovative logistics and technology companies to further transform Aramex into a leading technology enterprise, grow our e-commerce proposition and sustain ably expand the business," said Aramex chief executive Hussein Hachem.
Aramex on October 3 said it had established a joint venture e-commerce company with Australia Post, in a move that could herald a new expansion drive by the company.
Alabbar has previously said he is keen to harness Aramex's footprint in logistics and transport to build an e-commerce platform across the Arab world comparable to Alibaba, in areas such as banking and retail.
The Arab world's young population and improving internet access mean the region is well placed to capture the growing popularity of e-commerce.
The company said its third-quarter profitability was hit by fewer working days due to public holidays and slower economic activity in the Gulf.
Aramex made a net profit of 72.2 million dirhams ($19.7 million) in the three months ended September 30, it said in a statement. This compares with a profit of 74.6 million dirhams in the same period a year earlier.
EFG Hermes and SICO Bahrain forecast that the firm would make a quarterly net profit of 75.8 million dirhams and 77.1 million dirhams respectively.
Third-quarter revenue was 1.05 billion dirhams, compared with 917.0 million dirhams a year ago.
Cross border e-commerce was the key driver of the growth and will continue to drive the company's business strategy and expansion plans in the future, said Hachem.