From telecoms to groceries might seem out-of-the-blue, but apparently not to Etisalat. The UAE-based telecommunications and mobile network company recently acquired Dubai-based e-commerce grocery platform, elGrocer for an undisclosed amount.
Although Etisalat’s core offering is its mobile network, over the past few years the company has grown to accumulate a diversified portfolio of subsidiaries. This mimics what most other tech companies, such as WeChat and Careem, are doing in the ‘super-app’ space — becoming end-to-end e-commerce and communications platforms. elGrocer adds to Etisalat’s diversify strategy, joining previous investments in AI-services provider, G42, and Morocco-based Maroc Telecom Group. The company provides access to over 120k products and 500 stores through partnerships with major UAE retailers — a welcome addition alongside Etisalat’s ‘Smile’ app (a loyalty points platform where users get access to retail promotions).
why it matters
Etisalat’s recent acquisitions - elGrocer included - are a shift towards the digital, which makes sense given that e-commerce revenues across the GCC grew from $18b in 2019 to $24b in 2020.