Archive for the ‘Portals’ Category
Logta the online service that provides shoppers with a one-stop shop for promotions, that was previously covered here, has expanded and released what they’re describing as an online mall.
They’ve gone ahead and launched a new section under their portal called Logta Mall, with a wide range of online stores for a number of retailers covering various sectors and offering their products for sale online through Logta’s new platform.
So to build up towards a B2C model, Logta’s sales team get in touch and work with a variety of retailers in order to put together partnerships, through which Logta sets stores for them on the platform with all the products they want to put up for sale, and then handle all the order processing, online payments and shipping follow-up.
mediaME.com, the specialized online community for advertising and media professionals in the Middle East with over 11,000 members, has launched a free Classifieds service to address the need for sector-specific classifieds listings that provide exposure to a more targeted audience and market.
Accordingly, the mediaME Classifieds service focuses on advertising and media related categories. For example, listings categories cover all aspects of the jobs and freelance markets, featuring Job Postings, Job Seekers, Freelancers and Professional Service Providers with sub-categories for every advertising and media specialization.
The listings also aim to serve the needs of sellers with categories for Media Opportunities, Sponsorship Opportunities, Events & Activities and Business Equipment & Software. (more…)
Microsoft announced the launch of “Yalla Apps“, a regional Windows Phone 7 developer portal that Microsoft hopes will serve as an accelerator for the creation, availability and submission of local Windows Phone 7 applications from the developer community across the Middle East and Africa region (MEA), in addition to enabling them to be part of the growing global Windows Phone 7 developer community.
Through Yalla Apps, local developers can submit, participate and distribute their applications through the global marketplace for Windows Phone 7 and move towards monetizing their applications and creating new revenue opportunities.
Yalla Apps will also offer developers the opportunity to download Windows Phone 7 application templates, sample code and components to get a quick start in their application development. Moreover, developers can also upload their own code and share it with the community either on a free or paid basis.
Edufina is a newly launched startup that aims to fill in an empty space providing comprehensive, accurate and up-to-date information about universities around the Arab world.
The portal targets both students and parents, and enables them to access very detailed university data and statistics, as well as use a set of comparison tools in order to compare between all options that match their needs and interests.
What’s great about Edufina is that it collects all this information that is freely available from universities but still cumbersome to get a hold of into one place, in a clear and structured way, through a simple and really nice interface, that enables users to run and filter searches on, run comparisons between different universities on, and come to their final decision on which university better suits them.
Nahel.com is an online shopping portal based out of Dubai, United Arab Emirates; that aims to become the biggest B2C online retailer in the region.
Nahel.com was founded by Saeid Hejazi, and was officially launched in July 2009. It currently only covers the UAE, although there are plans to expand to the GCC region, with hopes to reach the whole Middle East in the future.
They’ve worked on building an inventory of thousands of new brand-name products covering several categories, from electronics, to games to perfumes, watches and clothing. They source products from wholesalers and distributors in order to be competitive in terms of selection, quality and prices.
National Net Ventures N2V, one of the top internet groups in the Middle East just announced its investment in Yebab.com, the Arab portal specialized in organizing wedding celebrations in the United Arab Emirates.
Rashid Al Ballaa, CEO of N2V, stated that the project comes in line with the group’s current and future plans to expand its presence at the regional and the international levels. The plan is obviously to enhance the portal’s growth and presence, expanding it into other Arab Gulf countries, and the rest of the Middle East region, establishing it as the most trusted wedding directory in the Arab world.
Yebab.com, which was launched from the UAE in 2009, has proven really successful in the UAE, becoming a leading portal providing a directory of wedding services in the country; including listings for the various suppliers and services from caterers to dressmakers, artists, photographers and traditional musicians. The site shows strong potential to perform just as well and more in other markets around the region.
AqarMap.com, the regional online real estate marketplace that was launched a few months ago, and that enables users to search for houses, apartments and land based on location, through satellite maps, has launched a new version.
According to numbers from AqarMap, they’ve grown quite well over the past few months, reaching a number of over 600 registered Real Estate companies and brokers, who are using the service and posting their properties on it.
The new version of the site aims to bring improved usability and more features for the users. The interesting thing is that all the enhancements and features in this new version were built on ideas and features requested by the early adopting users and clients of AqarMap, which makes it pretty much a crowd sourced effort.
Tadarrab.com is a new service that was launched from Jordan and that aims to be an internship portal / guide for the Arab world, linking companies and interns.
This is made possible through a platform that was built to enable companies to post and promote their available internship opportunities, and on the other hand make it easy for fresh graduates and students to find these opportunities and apply for them as interns.
The goal of the service is of course to try and help youth to find interesting internship opportunities in different companies, in order to start gathering work experience and begin paving their career path. It also helps companies open up their internship positions to a wider group of people enabling them to find and pick better candidates who might go on to become full time team members in the future.
Monaqasat is an online tendering service that covers all middle eastern markets, and aims to be a central hub for all tendering activities, from sharing of documents to online bidding.
The idea is to enable users to manage their tendering and procurement process in an easy, efficient and secure way; catering to the needs of all types of institutions of all sizes and industries in the Middle East region.
Monaqasat aims at offering a full experience to the institutions using it, by implementing the complete tendering process, allowing its users to create tenders, invite stakeholders, submit and review tender documents, submit their online bids and automatically generate tender reports the instant the tender is completed, all from the confort of their own offices.
While Real Estate owners continue to struggle to overcome the results of the financial crisis that hit them the hardest, and find themselves working harder to sell or rent their properties in today’s economy; you’d think that this wouldn’t really be the best time for someone to go ahead and launch a real estate portal.
However, I’m sure the founders of AqarMap would disagree, and would argue that it is at times like these that opportunities are created; I know because I had this discussion a few months ago with the CEO of AqarMap, Amad Almsaodi, who has been driving this effort.
The idea is that as things are currently quite tight for real estate companies and owners, and their marketing budgets aren’t what they used to be, they need more affordable and efficient marketing channels; and that is the spot AqarMap wants to establish itself in, launching to specifically target this demand with a new platform that tries to take a different and more innovative approach to matching sellers and buyers based on location.
What AqarMap aims to do is tackle the weakness in the regional addressing system by allowing real estate owners to precisely identify their properties using satellite maps; enabling buyers and renters to search the market by browsing an interactive map instead of using keywords.
Amad Almsaodi, CEO of AqarMap.com, says: “We built our marketplace by capitalizing on the Real Estate golden rule: Location, Location, Location. The price of a property is irrelevant if it is not in the customers preferred location. Customers can now search by location and find the nearby points of interest, such as: parks, schools, public transportation, …etc.”
Property owners can post their listings on AqarMap.com for free, and for a small fee they can promote their listings to gain higher visibility on the map, also enabling geo-targeting of potential clients to increase click-throughs.
AqarMap.com also uses a number of different technologies and services to empower its users; Google maps for location, YouTube for videos of properties, Twitter and Facebook to help share listings in social circles, as well as other services to translate content and convert numbers and currencies.
AqarMap is a service based out of Yemen, is currently available in both Arabic and English, and has already taken part in several regional competitions over the past period and won a number of awards.