MSN Unveils Maghreb Portal

Published April 29th, 2008 - 07:54 GMT

MSN Unveils Maghreb Portal
Online news, entertainment and local content services will be tailored for
one of world’s highest youth markets

Steve Ballmer, CEO, Microsoft Corporation and Khaled Bichara, Board Member of Orascom Telecom Holding, recently launched a new MSN Maghreb portal at a press conference in Skhirat.  The new MSN Maghreb portal, a joint venture between Microsoft and LINKdotNET (managing operators of MSN Arabia and wholly owned subsidiary of Orascom), will provide the best of international and local news and entertainment content and will deliver access to the world’s most popular online services, all in one place.  MSN Maghreb will feature all localized content and services in French for users in the Maghreb region (Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria). 

The MSN Maghreb audience will be able to instantly access up-to-the-minute local and global news including entertainment, gossip, information about local events, communities and local business services.  Furthermore MSN Maghreb will give consumers access to the already popular Windows Live services, like Windows Live Messenger, Windows Live Hotmail, and Windows Live Spaces. 

Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft Corporation commented: “With a large population of young people who are making the online world a bigger and bigger part of their daily lives for everything from communicating and sharing experiences with friends and family to accessing entertainment and information, the Maghreb region is a very attractive market for Microsoft. By integrating MSN and Windows Live, MSN Maghreb will provide seamless access to compelling content and services and deliver a large and engaged audience for local advertisers”
The market is primed for rich, interactive services

Naguib Sawiris, Orascom Telecom Holding Chairman and CEO added: “The rapid growth of the Internet has created an extremely sophisticated market in the Maghreb region, one which expects new, creative and interactive online services.  The market is primed for the kind of rich, interactive services that the MSN Maghreb portal offers and will became a daily part of how online users work, live and play.”

MSN is working with LINKdotNET, the largest Internet Solutions Provider in the region on the provision of MSN Maghreb. The joint venture brings the local media expertise of LINKdotNET together with Microsoft’s global expertise, content relationships and international services. Microsoft and LINKdotNET have already had great success with their first regional Portal (MSN Arabia), currently attracting 2million page views a day to the site’s news pages.

“Hot off the success of MSN Arabia, the leading portal in the Middle East, MSN Maghreb has great potential within the online advertising market in the Maghreb region and with MSN’s global presence, there is a real opportunity to provide a successful and popular service addressing the region’s need.” added Karim Beshara, CEO of LINKdotNET.

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