US online shopping giant Amazon has reportedly agreed a full acquisition of UAE e-commerce website Souq.com after previously backing away from a deal.
Bloomberg reported earlier this month that Amazon had restarted talks to acquire Souq.com for as much as $650m after discussions stalled in January due to a disagreement over the price.
Other bidders including mall operator Majid Al Futtaim had all pulled out of bidding, the publication said.
Now UAE-based newspaper The National reports that the full acquisition of Souq.com, which generates 78 percent of e-commerce in the Middle East and North Africa, by Amazon has been agreed.
Souq.com was valued at $1bn in its last funding round in which it raised $275m from investors including Standard Chartered.
The company’s existing investors include Tiger Global Management and South Africa’s Naspers Ltd.
Souq.com had been expected to face a tough year following the announcement of noon.com – a $1bn rival platform backed by Emirati billionaire Mohamed Alabbar and the Saudi Public Investment Fund.
However, noon failed to meet its promise of a January launch with 20 million products and there has been no update as to when it will officially come online.
Souq.com currently offers 8.4 million products after recently expanding into books and groceries.
By Robert Anderson
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