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C1ME restructures local operation

Commerce One Middle East (C1ME) is reorganising its operation in Dubai, as it decentralises its sales and marketing operations to other regional geographies.

Commerce One Middle East (C1ME) is reorganising its operation in Dubai, as it decentralises its sales and marketing operations to other regional geographies.

The restructuring will include a reduction in staff headcount. It’s unclear whether these staff will find positions with C1ME other’s offices.

“This does not, in anyway undermine the importance of the UAE market to C1ME, rather it provides a complementary effort for the benefit as a region as a whole,” says Simon McIver, of C1ME.

As part of the restructuring, the marketplace software vendor has shut its office in Dubai’s Emirates Towers, and is reopening in Dubai Internet City.

“We have used the Emirates Towers [office] as an initial hub until DIC offices were finalised and [we’re] ready to move,” says McIver.

“The timing of this is in-line with a restructuring exercise that C1ME is undertaking in order to decentralise its sales and marketing to the relevant geographies to be closer to the market and customers,” he adds.

In C1ME’s bid to get closer to the market it plans to have a “major presence” in Saudi, Egypt and in other countries where “we need to be closer to our customers,” comments McIver.

McIver was similarly vague on C1ME’s strategy for further market consortiums, saying only that there are activities underway. “However, the timing of these are critical and hence we will be releasing information on a timely basis in line with C1ME and our partners’ views.”

Since entering the region in the first half of 2000, C1ME has been campaigning to set up a number of regional online marketplaces through local business consortiums.

However, despite announcing consortiums in Kuwait and Qatar, no marketplace has yet been launched. It is also known CIME is working closely with major investors in Saudi.

McIver denies that C1ME’s opportunities in the UAE have been permanently curtailed by the early success of Tejari.com, the de-facto e-procurement portal of Dubai.

“Plans have been slowed by Tejari's early adoption in the government of Dubai,” says McIver. “However, we believe that the UAE market including Dubai can afford to have a competing marketplace,” he adds.

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