BNPL Boom in UAE & KSA 

In today’s fast-paced world, flexibility and convenience in payment options have become increasingly important. In the years following the pandemic, consumers have become more price-sensitive than ever, whilst their aspirations to purchase goods and services are constantly growing. Enter Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) Services – transforming the way consumers shop and manage their finances. […]

Private Labels: Driving Power Shift from Brands to Retailers

In UAE’s grocery sector, while legacy brands in UAE’s grocery sector continue to enjoy healthy profit margins, retailers are facing a set of challenges. Amidst intensifying competition and shifting consumer preferences, the challenges for retailers are rising. Yet, within these challenges lie growth opportunities. A notable trend emerging is the strategic focus on private labels […]

Shifting Sands: 3 Anticipated Shifts in MENA’s booming IPO market 

There was a time when Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region were a rarity. From only a handful of IPOs taking place annually a few years ago, we currently see around 50 IPOs in the region on an annual basis looking at the data from the previous 2 […]

In-app advertising – Next frontier in digital marketing? 

Advertising budgets tend to mirror shifts in consumer behavior. Our readers would be aware of how the digital ad spend is already higher than traditional channels in the UAE. And as consumers increasingly turn to digital channels, it’s only natural that advertising dollars would follow suit.   However, Digital ad spending needs to adapt to match […]

UAE & KSA Markets: Same Same or Different?

At Redseer, we delve deep into various Consumer Internet sectors across the GCC region, drawing on over 10+ years of experience. While the pandemic drove rapid adoption of the digital economy, purchase decision criteria have evolved significantly in recent years. Through our brand and industry trackers, we closely examine the factors influencing decisions in the […]

MENA e-commerce: A unique ecosystem, in a period of transition

Amidst the turbulence of the pandemic, the digital economy surged globally, but nowhere more profoundly than in the MENA region. This is because we were still in the period of customer acquisition where the marketing spending was extremely high. The pandemic helped leapfrog these days, placing our region on a pedestal of growth. Now, as […]

KSA food aggregators to deliver a million smiles

The food service sector in Saudi Arabia is currently a massive SAR 100 Bn market that has displayed resilience and rebounded swiftly. The market witnessed a COVID-led decline because of reduced mobility/ operational hours and restaurant closures. During this time, an emerging trend of in-home consumption emerged which created a unique opportunity for food delivery […]

KSA Digital Economy

KSA’s economy has witnessed the fastest GDP growth rate during the 2021-22 period, driven by pro-business reforms and rising oil prices. Continuous improvement in ease of doing business, social and economic liberalization, and initiatives to attract talent and global businesses will pave the way for future growth. KSA has a thriving tech enabler ecosystem with […]

Saudi Arabia’s Rise to Global Entertainment Dominance


In the aftermath of the global pandemic, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) is experiencing a remarkable transformation across various facets of society. Swift advancements in social, economic, and cultural realms underscore Saudi Arabia’s aspiration to become the hub of the region and the world. This transformative phase is driven by a growing acceptance of […]

Ramadan: Homebound in UAE, Outbound in KSA 

The holy month of Ramadan is around the corner, and we did a recent study to understand consumer needs, motivations, and preferences during the period. Some interesting trends have emerged, and stark differences exist between the expected behavior in the UAE and KSA.  1. Ramadan at Home in UAE, Out and About in KSA  Celebrations […]

Resilience or Dry Spell in MENA’s Startup Funding Ecosystem? 

As we step into 2024, we’re excited to share insights into the trends that defined the past year and the signals shaping the landscape ahead. In our latest article, we delve into the resilience of the MENA startup ecosystem amidst global funding challenges.  1.Globally, startup funding has been difficult, however MENA has been impacted lesser… […]

Massive USD 31 Bn Food Services Market in KSA to get an L&E uplift

The Food Services Landscape in KSA is witnessing significant growth powered by a thriving food delivery segment. This comes at a time when the kingdom is investing significantly into leisure and entertainment infrastructure to attract tourism, both international and domestic.   The intersection of food services and L&E offers attractive opportunities for brands catering to these […]

Is Singles Day the New-Black Friday? 

Its that time of the year! Black Friday has had a significant impact on the buying behaviour of consumers and now has become integrated in the retail calendar in UAE.  This year Black Friday’s market growth is anticipated to stabilize as compared to last year, however it has now evolved into a festive last quarter […]

Navigating the UAE’s Super-App Market Landscape 

The e-commerce landscape in UAE is witnessing a decline in the number of shopping apps used by consumers due to their increasing preference for streamlined app usage. Super-apps have emerged as a response to this trend, as major brands like Careem, Talabat, Noon Food, and Amazon expand to become comprehensive one-stop solutions for diverse consumer […]

Decoding UAE’s eGrocery Market Landscape


Over the past years, UAE eGrocery market been evolving. It has now matured and has a level of penetration comparable to developed markets. At the same time, the market has experienced a shift, moving from marketplace-driven to a balanced mix of omnichannel and hyperlocal players. Going forward, the eGrocery market is expected to double, attaining […]

Charting the Course: Jahez CFO Heni Jallouli Unravels the Dynamics of Saudi Arabia’s Food Delivery Landscape

In the bustling landscape of the Middle East’s food delivery market, one name stands out for its remarkable strides and unwavering commitment to convenience, taste, and technological innovation – Jahez. As a leading local digital champion, Jahez has become synonymous with hassle-free culinary experiences, redefining how people savor their favorite dishes in the region. Founded […]

MENA Black Friday a $74 Bn retail opportunity 

1. MENA Black Friday will represent a sizable $74 Bn retail opportunity in 2023; However, its significance within the online retail calendar is moderating er ecosystem Black Friday Sales stabilizing but still significant. While the World Cup influenced sales last year, it is anticipated that the MENA retail calendar will return to its usual patterns. The […]

Saudi Arabia Real Estate: A Growth Story Grounded in Stability

1. KSA real estate sector set to grow at a 10% CAGR over next 5 years – almost at par with UAE The growth narrative in KSA is unfolding, and the real estate sector is directly benefiting from it. KSA’s real estate sector is set to grow at a steady 10% CAGR annually for the […]

Food Delivery: A Taste of Saudi Arabia’s Thriving Market

1. Food aggregators have already generated value for the broader ecosystem Currently, food aggregator market accounts for ~16% of the total food service market and has created roughly 150,000 jobs, equivalent to 1% of the total workforce in KSA. Furthermore, recent relaxation in labor regulations has made it easier to acquire delivery riders. Given the […]

Decoding MENA BNPL Market

1. Credit card adoption has been limited in MENA due to Shariah non-compliance, despite high banking penetration. Despite having a well-established banking sector, KSA faces hurdles when it comes to credit card adoption, with adoption ~20%. This is significantly lower than that of its global counterparts. The primary reason for this low adoption rate is […]

UAE: Gateway to $1.5Tn MENA Consumer Spending

UAE is the gateway to the $1.5 Tn MENA consumer spending market. UAE contributes 15% of GDP and over 15% of regional tourist influx, its strategic location and robust infrastructure have solidified its position as global trade hub status. Pro-business policies of the government coupled with strong consumer confidence in the country; position it as […]

UAE employees: A >$100Bn opportunity

In the ever-changing world of employee benefits, several interesting trends have come to the forefront. The UAE region, known for its appeal to expats, continues to attract individuals looking for new opportunities. However, a competitive market has led to a fierce talent war, making it challenging for employers to retain their employees. In this dynamic […]

KSA Omnichannels & Hyperlocals: Competition or Harmony?

eGrocery market in KSA has been undergoing continuous evolution over the past few years. During the pandemic, omnichannels managed to secure a significant market share by leveraging their offline resources. However, in the post-pandemic era, they are struggling to compete with digital natives due to their inferior technology and lack of resources for fast delivery. […]

Digital Disruption: UAE is shaping the future of business

UAE has transformed into a powerful economic force. Today, while accounting for ~15% of GDP, and >15% of tourist inflow to the region. Its strategic location and strong infrastructure have made it a global trade hub over the years. More recently, the pro-business policies of the government have turned the spotlight on investors into the […]

Shopping Goes Social – $10Bn Opportunity for MENA Retailers​

The fusion of shopping and social media is reshaping consumer behavior and advertising strategies, offering a potential windfall of over $10 billion for those who seize the moment. Social media’s ascendancy from a communication tool to an overpowering advertising force cannot be ignored. With users now spending more than double the time on these platforms, […]

Disruption of the digital disrupters

There are some interesting trends playing out in the dynamic realm of digital entertainment. OTT video & audio streaming services are thriving in developed MENA nations. These industries are shifting to ad-based models to create mass appeal and drive penetration beyond the urban elite consumers. Thus, the Digital advertising space is set to be disrupted, […]

The Future is Customer Engagement

Customer engagement platforms are empowering organizations in the region to adapt to the fast-evolving consumer landscape, providing customizable and full-stack solutions to meet the varying, cross-industry needs, of customer engagement. As the focus in the digital economy shifts from customer acquisition to retention, these solutions become increasingly important in fostering lasting relationships and driving business […]

Unveiling Redseer’s Ecommerce Confidence Index in Middle East

We are delighted to unveil the inaugural Ecommerce Consumer Confidence Index (ECCI) in MENA. This index aims to capture the sentiment of consumers towards ecommerce. 1. Redseer has created ECCI to assess the consumer sentiment and confidence around eCommerce Ecommerce Confidence Index is designed to assess consumer sentiment and confidence in the eCommerce landscape by […]

Shopping Goes Social

Social media channels, with their large userbase and increasing time spent, continue to be the influential channels for retail purchase decisions. Social commerce along with live streaming has already taken up significant market share in some of the leading markets like China and Vietnam. This trend is expected to be followed in the MENA region […]

MENAT Powers Ahead with EVs

We are excited to share with you some remarkable insights into the automotive landscape in the MENAT region. In this article, we focus on the growing preference for electric vehicles (EVs) and the potential for significant market growth in the coming years. 1. Turkey’s consumers are embracing EVs as their car of choice with 40% […]

Decoding the UAE Real Estate Market

The UAE real estate market is booming, thanks to Russian expats and local buyers. In the short term, Russian expats are fuelling the market, while in the long term, local buyers will drive growth. In this newsletter, we’ll explore the top trends and factors that are contributing to this growth, including the influx of Russian […]

How to acquire new customers this Black Friday?

Last quarter of the year has traditionally been an important period for sales in UAE contributing more than 30% of overall retail sales. While, last year, the Football world cup overlapped resulting in a significant increase in sales. This year, we expect the growth to taper down as consumers increasingly start living in the moment, […]

Will MENA tune in to music streaming?

Despite the significant growth of digital technology and the high adoption of smart devices in the MENA region, music streaming has yet to reach the same level of popularity as other parts of the world. However, this presents an opportunity for the music industry to tap into the untapped potential of the region’s market. With […]

Ramadan Across Borders

As we reach the mid of the holy month of Ramadan, we would like to extend our warmest greetings to you and your loved ones. This is a significant time when Muslims from all over the world come together to engage in spiritual reflection, fasting, and devotion through prayer. Here, we will take a closer […]

Ramadan 2023~ Changing habits, evolving patterns!

Ramadan is a significant time of the year for Muslims, with many observing the month-long period of fasting, prayer, and spiritual reflection. For retailers in the Middle East and Southeast Asia regions with significant Muslim populations, this period can be a lucrative time, with an expected $150 billion in retail sales. While Ramadan remains the […]

Ramadan Retail Renewal

As the sacred month of Ramadan draws near, we would like to send our heartfelt greetings to you and your dear ones. Ramadan is an extraordinary time when Muslims across the globe unite to observe a month of spiritual reflection, fasting, and prayer. Here we will provide a deeper insight into the shifting trends for […]

GCC Conglomerates

GCC online retail sector has witnessed a rampant expansion, leapfrogging from 10 Bn USD in 2019 to 30 Bn USD in 2022. A strong digital enabler ecosystem, proactive policymaking coupled with a digital-ready population of 54 Mn, GCC ecommerce boom is unravelling. 1. GCC Online retail is sizable: ~$30bn in GMV and has been growing […]

Tech to Drive MENA IPO Boom

The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region has seen a surge in IPO activity in recent years, with several high-profile companies going public and raising significant capital. To sustain this momentum, the region will need to continue embracing new technologies and innovative solutions to drive further growth. Here we deep dive into the thriving […]

Hidden Value of Discovery Commerce

With online taking center stage for influencing awareness, research, and consideration, the path to purchase is more complex than ever before. While online presents an immense opportunity to unlock growth by driving discovery for brands, its hidden value is yet to be capitalized. In this article, we deep dive into the sharp shifts in consumer […]

CBT Taxation – Supporting a sustainable local retail ecosystem

Recently, the customs duty ceiling for international cross-border trade was reduced. The policy change is expected to support creating a sustainable local retail ecosystem and further accelerate the trend of partnerships between local and international retail players in the UAE. Here’s an insight into the impact of the policy update on local retail players and […]

Digital Economy in Motion

In this article, we look back at what was a landmark year for MENA. Sectors across the digital economy saw rapid adoption and enhanced levels of consumer maturity which helped unravel the potential that the digital economy in the region holds. Here we call out some of the key highlights from 2022. 1. MENA is […]

BNPL Wave is Now a $1.5 Bn Reality

The Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) market is expected to grow in the Middle East region as this payment mode has a fast approval method. This is the most convenient payment method, spread over a period of time with smaller amounts of EMI. As the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the economic conditions in the Middle East […]

MENA Insurtech: Ripe for the Taking

Insurtech has all the makings of the long-awaited fulcrum that pioneers MENA’s insurance market level with that of developed economies, starting with the GCC. In this article, we deep-dive into MENA’s booming Fintech landscape and highlight a rapidly evolving segment within it – Insurtech. 1. Insurance penetration in GCC economies is still nascent– leaving significant […]

eB2B: Real Winners To Emerge Now

Pandemic driven eCommerce boom led to emergence of eB2B players, who were quick to pick on the shift in consumer purchase and attract investors, helping scale eB2B market to ~$1.2 Bn in MENAP. eB2B sector is witnessing consolidation as players look to balance focus on scale, profitability and enhance capabilities. It is important that players […]

Black Friday Sales To Cross ~ $350 Bn This Year

Black Friday, the biggest shopping extravaganza, presents a ~$350 Bn global opportunity through online sales. This year Black Friday will coincide with FIFA World Cup, impacting customers’ purchase behaviour and shopping patterns. Driven by deals and discounts, the Black Friday season is filled with excitement for shoppers, and financial sharing applications are providing an additional […]

The Game That Goes Beyond 90 Mins!

Digital Media has revolutionized how we experience sports events; its impact on World Cups has historically been massive and is expected to increase with the current edition of the Qatar World Cup. World Cup will drive audience engagement whose interest is directed not only to the 90 minutes of the game but also to behind-the-scenes […]

A Cup Full Of Food

Food delivery market is poised to benefit from the celebratory atmosphere that has been a feature of Mega sports events. High consumption enthusiasm will drive consumer spending and acts as a springboard to boost sales. “The Qatar cloud kitchen culture is rapidly evolving and will naturally get a major boost from the celebratory atmosphere” Ramez […]

The Most Inclusive Football Tournament

It is our pleasure to release our report “The Most Inclusive Football Tournament” covering key themes that will play out during the upcoming World Cup in Qatar. The championship in Qatar is one of the largest sporting events in a post-pandemic world. This report covers the impact, market outlook, and evolving consumer and supplier trends […]

The Most Inclusive Football Tournament

Football world championship in Qatar is one of the largest sporting events in a post-pandemic world. Enabled by the proliferation of digital media channels and internet/smartphone penetration, an unprecedented 5 billion consumers are expected to engage with the event. Consumption is expected to spike during the tournament which overlaps with the retail festive season. The […]

How can restaurants sustain in the evolving food service industry?

MENA Food Delivery Ecosystem is rapidly evolving. While food aggregators helped restaurants weather the pandemic, their impact on the profit margins has been reduced. Restaurants are creating own unique propositions to attract consumers and consecutively restaurant own apps are now the fastest growing segment. Evolving stakeholder economics is poised to reshape the food delivery market in […]

OTT Plays Finale After the World Cup

OTT is the future of entertainment, and sports tournaments have emerged to springboard user engagement. FIFA World Cup 2022 is expecting ~5bn viewership, out of which ~1bn viewership is projected through OTT platforms. A steep spike in OTT subscriptions is seen during a major sports event, which experiences a dramatic fall post event. Thus, OTT […]

Is direct the way to go for Beauty?

The BPC market in the MENA region is going through a transformational period driven by evolving consumer needs and shopper persona. While legacy brands have undertaken various initiatives to fulfill emerging trends, consumers aren’t fully satisfied. This has led to the emergence of D2C brands who have been able to develop meaningful relationships with customers […]

Black Friday Alert!

Black Friday has emerged as one of the most important events in retail in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), owing to the wide array of deals and discounts, spread out over the 5–6 week festive period. As retail traffic is set to be high; retailers in the region need to be cognizant of […]

Black Friday Shopping Season Is Here

Black Friday is the most anticipated online shopping event of the year, owing to the wide array of deals and discounts spread out over the 5–6-week festive period. This year promises to be no different, with consumer purchase intent peaking in anticipation of this sales extravaganza. With interesting price drops and high consumer purchase intent, […]

Realising Potential Through Consolidation

The digital economy went through a disruption and high growth phase over the last few years, aided by the pandemic. While most sectors are still in nascency in terms of online penetration, a few sectors, like FoodTech, are more evolved in the region, with penetration levels higher than most other global benchmarks. And in such […]

The biggest ever World Cup

1. Online viewership expected to reach 5 Bn during FIFA World Cup 2022 5 Bn eyes are expected to be glued to FIFA World Cup in Qatar, expecting a growth of over 43% than the viewership witnessed during FIFA World Cup in Russia. Covid fueled digital penetration which has given fans multiple ways for football […]

What the 2025 runway looks like for UAE Fashion

1. UAE Fashion E-tail market poised to near 20% penetration by 2025 on the back of soaring purchase frequency rates An instrumental change to the UAE fashion scene in the coming years is that increase in frequency and average order value which will drive higher wallet share for online channel, will drive a lot more […]

Travel has arrived

1. UAE Travel market has recovered swiftly, closing in on pre-pandemic levels in 2H2021… In 2020, The travel market fell by over 65% owing to mobility and travel restrictions. However, Expo 2020, Global events like Dubai Shopping festival, Sport and Music concerts coupled with practical and responsive government policies, drove tourists to UAE and proved […]

Online Fundamentally Altered Grocery Buying Behavior

1. Grocery was the most underpenetrated online sector pre pandemic… The Grocery sector has been a predominantly offline shopped sector before the covid 19 pandemic, due to its essential nature. Consumers have always preferred to personally check the products before shopping for grocery as it directly impacts their health and wellbeing. Grocery shopping was a […]

MENA Economy: On the cusp of a digital revolution

MENA’s is riding the digital revolution. The digitally evolved population of Gen Z, Millennials, and Gen X is a fertile ground for digital solutions. Riding in the wake of the pandemic, its digital economy has experienced a manifold growth. It is estimated that 100 million plus consumers will shift to online services in next 5-6 […]

Unwrapping Ramadan 2022

Ramadan is a $6.2 Bn online sales event in MENA. Festive periods account for ~40% of annual e-tail in MENA.

Black Friday – $6Bn Online Shopping Event

Black Friday is a critical event in the retail calendar in MENA. This event which was first launched by Souq (now Amazon) as a 3-day online only event has now expanded to over six weeks of Q4. The event has been so popular that ~20% of annual online retail sales happen during the Black Friday sale period.

Key Black Friday Trends:

a. The Market is Stabilizing:
Last year BF season achieved +90% YoY growth; this year YoY growth is expected to stabilize at ~30%; Sales to reach ~$6 bn during BF period.
b. Differentiated Strategies are going to be at play
In terms of strategy, higher focus on private labels, Inventory led fulfilment and fast delivery speed are expected.
c. Consumer is moving beyond discounts
Discounts will become a right-to-play during BF. For right-to-win, other factors such as offer variety and exclusivity and experience will be key.

How MENA is shopping post COVID-19?

Lockdown measures have led to growth for e-tail. The growth rate during the lockdown has been ~20% by order volume and ~40% by value resulting in annualized GMV of $11 Bn.

Ramadan and Covid-19 Pandemic; an ordeal for retail

E-tailers generate ~25% of their annual GMV during Ramadan time, which when compared with White/Yellow Friday sale, stands at ~5%. Brands also realize the importance of Ramadan where many engage in activities such as launch of new products, new services, bundling of offers. A third of their annual marketing budget is spend in promotion of the same.

MENA gearing up for Ramadan – Fashion insights

1. Fashion shopping in Ramadan peaks during Eid week Fashion is the most exciting retail category, when it comes to Ramadan shopping in MENA. Excitement levels for clothing are high throughout the festival season, however it peaks during the Eid week. When this trend was studied at country level, UAE and KSA followed the same […]

Middle East Online Retail comes of age (Part 2)

1: Niche models gain traction Noon and Amazon have emerged as the key players in the online marketplace in the region. However, niche players have also emerged who either have a specific focus on customer segment, category or business model. Some niche marketplace examples are around grocery, value focussed, pre-loved fashion and gifting: 2: Electronics continues to […]

Middle East Online Retail comes of age in 2019

Insight 1: Fast-paced etailing market growth in 2019 Online retail market grew at a fast pace this year compared to last few years – greater than 35% this year compared to ~25% annually over the last few years.

Home Services Market Updates

‘Convenience’ ranks much ahead of ‘price’ as the main reason to avail on-demand home services Published on: Dec 2019 Compared to many sectors, on-demand home services has a high share of ‘convenience seeking users’ Which is likely to enable players to rationalize pricing and driving better unit economics in the long run Home services consumers […]

Retail 3.0 : The emergence of the omnichannel

1. Organized B&M is expected to grow at a CAGR of 20% while online retail is expected to grow at a CAGR of 35% till 2022 Published on: Nov 2019 Organized retailers have gradually expanded into several categories and no longer stick to just one format or product offering. They have been leveraging their brand […]

E-Tailing’s changing category mix and future of lodging

Despite slowing growth of mobiles category, e-tailing firmly on track to grow 32% in 2019 and reach USD ~82 Bn by 2022 Published on: Sep 2019 2019 to see the slowest growth in online mobiles sales in the last five years Despite the slowdown in mobiles, e-tailing to continue its rapid growth trajectory owing to […]

GCC – World’s first omni-channel superapp?

GCC – a unique market showing characteristics of both developed and developing markets GCC countries have most of their population concentrated in urban centres. This helps the organized retail players to make a deeper reach out to the population, resulting in a high representation of organized players in retail. This characteristic of the high share […]

Can MENA Have A Superapp?

Globally, apps are taking superapp journey by adding services to its offering and increasing per-customer revenue Published on: Jul 2019 A country/region becomes superapp ready when its large base of the population is smartphone first instead of desktop and the ecosystem of apps customized to local needs is not evolved. WeChat in China leveraged this […]

Decoding The Indonesian Online Seller

Sellers prefer an online retail platform majorly for their consumer reach followed by their UX/UI experience and word of mouth Published on: Jul 2019 Our research shows that Top 4 platforms are especially preferred for their reach, while sellers sell on social media primarily due to its zero commissions and easy to use UX/UI (and […]

Online Interior Design Market Updates

Buy Full Report Customization and Lead qualification key to scalability in the Online Interior Design market Published on: Apr 2019 Online Interior Design market is a large and fledgling opportunity in India (RSC estimates the market to be ~$ 100 mn in FY19, with online penetration of <1%). Despite the large addressable opportunity, leading Online […]

Online Grocery Market Updates | Middle-East

Buy Full Report Share of organized grocery retail in UAE+KSA is expected to increase to 80% by 2022, from current 60%; Unorganized grocery retail to shrink Published on: Jan 2019 RedSeer estimates grocery retail to grow at CAGR of ~5% to reach size of USD 73 Bn by 2022, from current USD 60 Bn for […]

Fintech Insights | Middle-East

1. Fintech: Funding in MENA fintech is led by lending and payment focused start-ups Published on: Oct 2018 Fintech based start-ups in the MENA region are seeing a lot of traction recently with a funding of ~USD115mn till date, of which ~75mn is received within last two years. UAE is the most popular geography among […]

Cab Aggregation Insights | Middle-East

1. Cab: After a first wave of rapid growth, MENA’s cab hailing market is ready for the next wave of expansion into smaller cities and realize its huge potential Published on: Sep 2018 MENA region’s online cabs market has grown rapidly to reach similar scale as its better funded regional peers in India and SE Asia in […]