SOUQ opens third UAE fulfilment centre ahead of Christmas rush
Souq.com has opened a third fulfilment centre in Dubai that will create 600 jobs and expand the e-commerce platforms footprint and sales in the Middle East.
The 23,000 square metre facility enables sellers to have a Souq.com store and ship their products to different customers, the company, which was purchased by Amazon last year, said in a statement.
“The increased fulfilment capacity also benefits our sellers, who comprise of thousands of small- and medium-sized businesses, by enabling them to scale up their businesses on our marketplace,” said Ronaldo Mouchawar, chief executive of Souq.com.
Souq.com is one of a handful of e-com players in the region benefitting most from the rise in online shopping in the UAE and the region as a whole.
The UAE is the fourth most prepared developing economy for e-commerce, according to a new index from the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (Unctad).
The e-commerce sector in the Middle East is growing at the fastest pace globally with online sales expected to double to $48.8bn by 2021, said a report by Fitch Solutions, a unit of Fitch Group.
The UAE is set to be one of the world leaders, with e-commerce spending in the country increasing 170 per cent to $27.1bn in 2022, from $9.7bn in 2017.
“The new Dubai fulfillment centre, along with the existing FCs, will enable Souq to handle the current and future demand in the UAE, where a growing number of customers choose Souq for their purchases,” said the company.
“The new facility will also help Souq meet is objective of growing selection and improving convenience for its customers,” it added.
SOUQ has been one of several e-commerce players in the region impacted by the Christmas rush, with reports on social media of missed delivery dates, late return procedures and incorrect orders being delivered.
The last mile operator fetchr was worst impacted this month when hundreds of customers online orders weren’t delivered in time. Fetchr blamed the problem on its third party logistics partners.
SOUQ and Noon.com have both been accused on social media of missing their guaranteed same-day and next-day delivery promises, likely as a result of increased demand ahead of Christmas. Logistics Middle East has reached out to both for comment.