Tejari targets KSA

Tejari announced the launch of its Saudi operation at Gitex yesterday, which it will carry out in partnership with the Al-Ghabban Group.

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By  Matthew Southwell Published  October 4, 2004

Tejari announced the launch of its Saudi operation at Gitex yesterday. The Dubai-based online marketplace’s entry into the Kingdom is being carried out in partnership with the Al-Ghabban Group. Tejari Saudi Arabia is the third project on which the duo have collaborated, as Tejari and Al-Ghabban Group announced franchise agreements for Tejari Iraq and Tejari Kuwait in November 2003 and January 2004 respectively. “Tejari now has reached the operational maturity and critical mass of trading partners necessary to enter the Saudi Arabian market, the largest in the Middle East for e-business and e-government services, as well as related internet hardware and software... The Saudi government has already undertaken significant steps to incorporate e-government into its services. It is now Tejari’s job to communicate effectively to both the public and private sectors in the Kingdom the numerous advantages of e-procurement, including the reduction in paper-based tasks, faster time to market, enhanced customer awareness, and increased profitability,” says His Excellency Sultan Bin Sulayem, chairman of Tejari. “Tejari has been at the forefront of e-business and online procurement in the region for the past four years and entering Saudi Arabia has been among our top priorities. Our objectives in the Kingdom will focus on delivering more key information and trading opportunities for local businesses while creating new services and areas of market reach to serve their interests,” adds Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, CEO of Tejari. Prior to finalising their franchise agreement, Tejari and the Al-Ghabban Group conducted intensive feasibility studies on the potential for online procurement in the Saudi market. The duo believes the industry sectors in the Kingdom most likely to adopt the online procurement model are construction, banking, government, and technology. “Middle East businesses are proving increasingly receptive to the online procurement model and Tejari itself — especially once they take into consideration the cost-savings and improved efficiency that this business process delivers. As we have seen recently in Kuwait and Iraq, the combination of Tejari’s e-procurement model and the expertise and experience of the Ghabban Group is set to significantly change the way the Saudi business community buys its goods and services,” says Mohammad Al-Ghabban, chairman of the Ghabban Group. Slightly closer to home, Tejari has also used Gitex to announce that yet more businesses have joined its online marketplace. Foremost among these is Etisalat, which will use Tejari to procure goods for its more than 40 offices and service centres throughout the UAE. According to Tejari, Etisalat’s management estimates that migrating from its existing procurement systems to an internet-based model could increase the efficiency of its procurement operations and significantly decrease its trading costs. “In order to ensure a consistently high level of service to our growing subscriber base, we’re constantly looking for suppliers that can provide and implement a diverse range of technologies in the landline, GSM, and internet provision sectors. Tejari membership will immediately introduce Etisalat to a pre-qualified community of leading vendors, considerably reducing the time we spend sourcing equipment,” says Mohammad Omran, acting president & CEO of Etisalat. “As a world-class service provider, Etisalat ensures the fairness and transparency of its procurement practices. Our partnership with Tejari will also help us ensure that we’re offering opportunities to a range of trading partners in the UAE, regionally and globally,” he adds. In addition to securing a contract for Etisalat, Tejari has also signed a new agreement with Emirates Group that will see the airline and travel group link its internal Oracle-based procurement system with Tejari. In addition, Emirates has issued a request stating that its international suppliers, including companies in the Middle East, Europe, the US and Asia Pacific regions, trade through the marketplace.

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