Global online retailer Amazon.com is reportedly in talks to purchase Dubai-based e-commerce platform Souq.com in a deal valued at $1bn, Bloomberg reported on Thursday.
Amazon is mulling a bid to acquire the entire site, but no final agreement has been reached so far, unnamed sources told Bloomberg.
It was previously reported that Souq was seeking a buyer for a 30 per cent stake to support its regional expansion plans.
Speaking earlier this month to reporters, Souq co-founder and CEO Ronaldo Mouchawar confirmed that the company had hired investment bank Goldman Sachs to assist in its growth but disclosed few other details.
“It’s just looking at what other options we have as a company as we grow.”
The company had grown 30 to 40 per cent year-on-year across its footprint covering the Gulf countries and Egypt and 50 per cent in Saudi Arabia, he said.
However, Mouchawar suggested a listing was some way off.
“We’re not there yet, we have work to do.” Mouchawar added.
In February, Souq.com announced it had raised more than Dhs1bn ($275m) in funding from existing investors Tiger Global Management and Naspers, new entrants Standard Chartered Private Equity, World Bank member IFC, Baillie Gifford and several regional and tech-focused financial institutions.
The round is believed to have made the company the Middle East’s first unicorn – a start-up company valued at more than $1bn.