Digital Middle East – The 4 articles you shouldn’t have missed this week

A lot is going on in the Middle East in terms of digital transformation and innovation. Every week we’re listing the most important bits and bites you shouldn’t have missed.

Subscribe here if you want to receive the weekly “Digital Middle East” as newsletter in your mailbox.

Careem hits one million drivers across region in race with Uber (Arab News)

Careem has passed the 1.000.000 driver mark as it competes with global rival Uber in cities across the region.

The Dubai-based ride app, which operates in 14 countries mainly in the Middle East, said that Faisal Saleh from Hail in Saudi Arabia became the millionth person to sign up to the service.

“We are humbled about achieving our target of creating one million jobs in the region,” said Careem CEO Mudassir Sheikha. “We started Careem with a mission to simplify and improve the lives of people.”

Note from DUC: The quick growth of Careem is a clear example of the success of localization of ‘foreign’ innovations like we’ve seen with Souq,, Talabat, etc. So don’t be afraid to improve something that already exists, based on the local culture & habits.

Read more about Careem growth

Subscribe here to receive the weekly updates on digital transformation & innovation in the Middle East:


UAE online spending forecast to reach $9.8bn by end-2018 (Zawya)

Report by PayPal & Ipsos reveals 81% of adults in UAE shopped online in the past 12 months, up from 68% in 2016.

In today’s global society, consumer spending behavior is increasingly being dictated by convenience and value. The report’s findings showcase this (and much more), with just over half of the online shoppers surveyed stating that it was not important to them if the retailer was based overseas.

Read more about the insights of UAE online spending behaviour

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter to stay updated about what happens in the Middle East tech scene:


Abu Dhabi Global Market launches $700 commercial licence for tech start-ups (Arabian Business)

The Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) has launched a new commercial licence for ADGM tech start-ups, it was announced on Saturday.

The licence will allow entrepreneurs to obtain an operational licence, as well as the option to apply for 4 residential visas and meet the requirement for a registered address through a range of options, at a nominal cost of $700 (AED2,570).

ADGM has also launched a ‘professional services support programme’, a partnership with local and international advisors that is designed to help entrepreneurs in various sectors improve their business skills and enhance their business.

The programme will also cover topics including legal, compliance, finance, accounting and value-added tax (VAT).

The initiative is part of the UAE to attract more foreign businesses and stimulate local entrepreneurship.

Read more about the ADGM commercial licence for Tech startups

Microsoft ‘hopeful’ of a deal to lift Skype ban in UAE (The National)

Multinational technology company continues talks with UAE’s telecoms regulator.

Microsoft is hopeful that the ban on Skype in the Emirates will be lifted, following discussions with the UAE authorities over the use of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services.

The lift of the ban would be great for a lot of international business people inside the UAE, but could be a sign for new economic opportunities as well for several VoIP services.

Read more about UAE’s telecoms regulation

Don’t miss out and subscribe for our weekly newsletter:


About Duval Union Consulting

We are new-style management consultants focusing on transforming and growing organizations in a digital-first world with offices in Europe and the Middle East. New-style? Co-created business strategy, custom-made transformation trajectories and actual experienced business advisors are only some of our differentiators and why clients love to work with us. We design the future of your business together.

> Click here to find out more on how we can help you make your company future proof