- Investment will support expansion of Careem’s Super App after proven success in the UAE
- Uber retains 100% ownership of the Careem ride-hailing business which it acquired in 2020 and will be a significant shareholder of the Careem Super App business
Abu Dhabi: e& today announced the signing of a binding agreement with Uber Technologies, Inc. (“Uber”) and its subsidiary Careem to acquire a majority stake in Careem’s Super App spinout. Careem’s ride hailing business will remain fully owned by Uber and continue to be available with all other Careem services on the existing app for customers.
e& is investing $400m to become a majority shareholder in Careem's Super App alongside Uber and all three of Careem's co-founders. The Careem Super App offers over a dozen services including food and grocery delivery, micro-mobility, a digital wallet and suite of fintech services, and additional third-party services such as home cleaning, car rental and laundry. Careem serves customers in 10 countries across the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.
With this new investment, Careem plans to accelerate the realisation of its ambitious vision to create the first “everything app” serving customers across the Middle East. This will include expanding its core food, grocery, and fintech services and the Careem Plus subscription programme across the region while adding even more partner services to the app. Careem expects significant synergies with e& and anticipates benefiting from e&’s large customer base and extensive experience scaling complex tech enabled businesses across a largely shared geographic footprint.
This investment is in line with e&’s strategic ambition of scaling up consumer digital offerings and accelerating its transformation to a global technology and investments group. It provides e& with access to multiple digital verticals, new innovative digital services, strong talent, and new geographies. e& will leverage the Careem Super App to boost the growth of its consumer digital services, including the expansion of e& life’s fintech vertical, e& money, which will play an important role in the super app vision by providing e& money’s powerful financial service offerings.
In recent years e& has transformed into a global technology and investment group. The company is integrating emerging technologies into its expanding business verticals. e& has 163 million subscribers across 16 countries in the Middle East, Asia and Africa.
Hatem Dowidar, Group CEO, e& commented, “Super Apps have catalysed the economic, social and cultural growth of emerging markets today. The popularity of super apps has come from the need to provide a unique and seamless customer experience. The mobile first population have given rise to an ecosystem that has encouraged the use and also expanded the scope for super apps with user expectations turned towards performing their daily activities on digital platforms.
“The Careem Super App, is a digital native that has built a rapidly growing payments, food and grocery delivery network, and a platform for other digital businesses to scale from. The shared vision between e& and Careem is exciting, we believe that together we’ll be able to enhance our impact across different markets in the region while pushing the boundaries of customer experience.”
Dara Khosrowshahi, CEO, Uber said, “Over the last decade, Careem helped revolutionize mobility across the greater Middle East while building an incredible brand. I am thrilled to partner with Careem, and welcome e&, as we grow the Careem super app to deliver more services to millions of people in this fast-moving part of the world. All of us at Uber are excited about the impact the Careem platform will have on this region over the next decade and beyond.”
Khalifa Al Shamsi CEO, e& life said: “We are thrilled to welcome Careem into the e& family with this exciting and ground-breaking deal. There are several growth opportunities between Careem and e& life as the “consumer digital” arm of e&. Our current strengths, primarily in fintech and multimedia, coupled with Careem’s services and regional footprint, will accelerate our joint vision towards a regional super app. With this partnership between e&, Careem and Uber we will set new standards of product innovation and customer experience throughout the region.”
Careem CEO and co-founder Mudassir Sheikha said, “The opportunity to use technology to leapfrog the lives of people in the region is enormous. Uber has been an incredible partner over the last three years as we expanded our mission to simplify the lives of people with everyday services beyond ride-hailing. We are excited to bring e& into the family. Their passion for uplifting the region and the synergies across their portfolio are extremely valuable. With two strong partners in e& and Uber, I have no doubt that we will build the preeminent technology platform of the region."
Since Uber’s acquisition in 2020, Careem has evolved to become a multiservice app offering users over a dozen services. In 2022 in the UAE, Quik, the grocery delivery service, grew 46X, and food orders grew by 86 percent. Over the course of the year Careem Pay launched as a true fintech in the UAE with a digital wallet and payments products including bill payments, international remittances, domestic peer-to-peer payments, and one-click checkout. Careem Bike doubled its network of pedal assist bikes and grew by 61%. Careem launched its popular subscription service Careem Plus, saw its first partner service (home cleaning) grow 4.9x while it also onboarded new third-party partners offering rental cars, spa and laundry services.
Completion of the transaction remains subject to regulatory approvals, customary closing conditions, and administrative procedures.
e& is one of the world’s leading technology and investment groups. With consolidated net revenue of AED 52.4 billion and consolidated net profit of AED 10.0 billion for 2022, its high credit ratings reflect the company’s strong balance sheet and proven long-term performance. Founded in Abu Dhabi more than four decades ago as the UAE’s first telecommunications company, the Group now operates in 16 countries across the Middle East, Asia and Africa. e& provides innovative digital solutions, smart connectivity and next-generation technologies to a variety of customer segments through its business pillars: etisalat by e&, e& international, e& life, e& enterprise and e& capital.
Uber’s mission is to create opportunity through movement. We started in 2010 to solve a simple problem: how do you get access to a ride at the touch of a button? More than 37 billion trips later, we’re building products to get people closer to where they want to be. By changing how people, food, and things move through cities, Uber is a platform that opens up the world to new possibilities.
Careem is building ‘the everything app’ for the greater Middle East, making it easier than ever to move around, order food and groceries, manage payments, and more. Careem is led by a powerful purpose to simplify and improve the lives of people and build an awesome organisation that inspires. Since 2012, Careem has created earning opportunities for over 2.5 million Captains, simplified the lives of over 50 million customers, and built a platform for the region’s best talent to thrive and for entrepreneurs to scale their businesses. Careem operates in over 70 cities across 10 countries, from Lahore to Marrakech.