The Largest Arab Tech Exit Since Maktoob: Rocket Internet Acquires Kuwaiti Food Ordering Talabat For $170M
German e-commerce group Rocket Internet agreed to buy Kuwait-based food delivery service Talabat for about $169.6 million according to Reuters as part of efforts to create one of the largest delivery network in the world.
This is the largest Arab tech exit since Maktoob Yahoo deal in 2009.
Talabat, operates in GCC countries including Kuwait,Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, and partners with restaurants such as Burger King, KFC and Pizza Hut.
Rocket also said its 50 percent-owned Foodpanda had struck a deal to buy 24h.ae, which it said was a strong player in the United Arab Emirates with seven cities: Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Al Ain, Sharjah, Ajman, Fujairah and Ras Al Khaima.
The amount of 24h deal was not announced.
foodpanda is already active in Saudi Arabia and Jordan with its hellofood.sa and hellofood.jo brands, respectively.
The move comes only days after Rocket paid hundreds of millions of euros to increase its stakes in grocery service HelloFresh and Delivery Hero and announced the formation of its new Global Online Takeaway Group.
The foodpanda group recently announced a series of acquisitions in Europe, taking over companies in Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, and Montenegro. Last Friday, foodpanda acquired competitors in 7 Southeast Asian and Asian markets, consolidating ist leadership position in the region. Now, the group is active in 40 markets in Asia, Europe, Middle East, Africa and Latin America.
Again, The Talabat acquisition deal represents the largest Internet exit in the Arab world so far. Almost the same the amount of Yahoo Maktoob deal. And it proves that marketplaces are a very lucrative online business in the Arab world.