Uber acquires Middle East competitor Careem for $3.1 billion

Posted: 26 March 2019 | | No comments yet

The Middle East’s largest ride-sharing business Careem will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Uber following a deal worth more than $3 billion.

Uber Careem Middle East acquisition

An agreement has been reached for Uber to acquire Careem in a $3.1 billion deal that constitutes the greater Middle East region’s largest-ever technology industry transaction.

Careem will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Uber, but will preserve its own branding and continue to be led by Careem co-founder and CEO, Mudassir Sheikha.

The deal comes at a time when the greater Middle East region’s digital economy is growing quickly, while the potential of its mobility marketplace remains largely untapped. Uber will acquire all of Careem’s mobility, delivery and payments businesses across the greater Middle East region, which includes Egypt, Jordan, Pakistan, Saudi Arbia and the United Arab Emirates. 

“This is an important moment for Uber as we continue to expand the strength of our platform around the world. With a proven ability to develop innovative local solutions, Careem has played a key role in shaping the future of urban mobility across the Middle East, becoming one of the most successful startups in the region. Working closely with Careem’s founders, I’m confident we will deliver exceptional outcomes for riders, drivers, and cities, in this fast-moving part of the world,” said Uber CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi.

Together, Uber and Careem will be able to improve regional transport infrastructure and speed up the delivery of digital services. The companies will develop an all-in-one app for mobility, delivery and payments, utilising Careem’s existing payment and  last-mile delivery services – Careem Pay and Careem NOW.

“Joining forces with Uber will help us accelerate Careem’s purpose of simplifying and improving the lives of people, and building an awesome organisation that inspires. The mobility and broader internet opportunity in the region is massive and untapped, and has the potential to leapfrog our region into the digital future. We could not have found a better partner than Uber under Dara’s leadership to realise this opportunity. This is a milestone moment for us and the region, and will serve as a catalyst for the region’s technology ecosystem by increasing the availability of resources for budding entrepreneurs from local and global investors,” said Careem CEO and co-founder, Mudassir Sheikha.

The transaction is expected to close in Q1 2020, subject to applicable regulatory approvals.

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