|By Arabian Post Staff| Emaar chairman and leading Dubai businessman Mohammed Alabbar followed up the launch of his $1 billion online retailing venture Noon with a joint venture for online luxury sales.
Alabbar announced at a press conference in Dubai that the firm Symphony Investments, owned by him, was taking 40 percent stake in the joint venture with Milan-based online retailer Yoox Net-a-Porter to profit from luxury spending in the Middle East.
The Italian retailer may start selling products into the Middle East in the next 12 months, he said.
Bloomberg adds: Alabbar is leading a $1 billion technology investment company formed with other regional investors, and also raised $1 billion from investors including Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund to create e-commerce firm Noon. He plans to start a social app similar to WhatsApp early next year. Alabbar bought a stake in regional logistics firm Aramex PJSC in July and 4 percent of Yoox Net-a-Porter for 100 million euros in April.
“E-commerce in the Middle East is still fresh and new, it’s 1.5 percent of total retail, it’s a baby,” Alabbar said. “We built Emaar into a sizable real estate company from nothing, and we need to build the next Emaar in e-commerce.”