customers at lowest price possible
Launching an e-commerce startup in UAE is not easy, especially when the giant player like Amazon, carrefour and noon.com rules the market. Papeeno.com was started with a vision to deliver best products to customers at lowest price possible.
Mr.Askar Ali, who was working in the satellite communication industry from 2012 at Dubai UAE, seeing an opportunity in the booming e-commerce market in the region, decided to quit and wanted to take advantage of his local and international market knowledge to start his own business. Along with Mr, Muhammed Arshad, they have pitched the idea to few investors on 2016 and one of them got impressed by the business plan, given a go ahead not only in UAE, but also in Kenya, Africa. Considering the risk factors, both of them flew to Nairobi, the capital city of Kenya for a market research. It was a successful journey for them as they came to know the Kenyan e-commerce industry was starting to boom and they had arrived at right time. Despite doing all the ground works and finishing technical sides of the company formation, the investor had to step down for some unknown reasons and they had to throw the platform away. Coming back to UAE, Mr.Arshad focused on export business. Mr.Ali was still dreaming for the e-commerce success which he saw in Africa. Tempted by an easy documents process of the Dubai government, he wanted to offer his customers the products which is already top sellers in the market but at a lower price than his competitors.
As he said, Everyone was against my move including my family, they wanted me to settle with a high paying job which is tax free in UAE, most of my friends are settled in a way or other but I am still struggling to make it happen, I can see the future opportunities but I cannot make them see it. But my investor is very confident about me, he is the biggest supporter so far I have. One of the main challenges I am facing now is the answer, which I have to give people around me. They all are wishing me success, but success is not easy to achieve. I have came a long way already and soon I am sure I will be successful and my business will be on the map.
Securing an investment from an angel investor, papeeno.com has started on 2021. But it was not easy as expected, the major challenge was the marketing of the products and website and gaining the trust of the customers. the marketing expenses are high comparing to other countries due to high level competition. Even the product prices are lower than Amazon or carrefour or any other e-commerce platform, papeeno.com struggled to gain customers. After doing some market research, They have decided to cut down the products which is available with all other competitors, and adding products which cannot be found easily helped them getting closer with customers.
Papeeno.com is upgrading the website and products at present, and expecting a re launch soon. Also, planning to bring more brands to UAE from all over the world which is presently not available in the region. Mr. Askar Ali hopes that bringing new products to the market will give them an upper hand than his competitors.
Their social media marketing is yet to flourish, waiting for the new platform and products launch, they will be hitting hard on the marketing side too.
The UAE is home to over 192 nationalities. Majority of the population are expats, Approximately 88.52% of the UAE’s population is made up of expatriates. Emiratis or UAE citizens account for the remaining 11.48%. Residents from the Indian subcontinent make up the largest proportion of expatriates in the UAE. There are currently around 40,000 people from the US. living in the city, with Americans making up one of the largest expat communities in the emirate. The majority of US citizens in the UAE are located in Dubai, with only 10,000 others living in Abu Dhabi or elsewhere. The city can indeed boast of offering an exceptional living environment to its inhabitants. The climate, but also a state-of-the-art health system, a very low crime rate, high-tech infrastructures and the absence of income tax are strong arguments that attract more and more expatriates.
The eCommerce market in the United Arab Emirates. The United Arab Emirates is the 24th largest market for eCommerce with a revenue of US$8.5 billion in 2021, placing it ahead of Vietnam and behind Austria. With an increase of 36%, the Emirian eCommerce market contributed to the worldwide growth rate of 15% in 2021. Papeeno.com will be aiming a significant position in the e-commerce industry coming years.
Talking about the growth, Mr. Ali is looking forward to invite more brands and products from all over the world in coming years. He has knowledge and experience in UAE’s export market too. Aiming the products will be exported to other Middle East countries too with his existing customers from neighboring countries. Also the shipping from the website to neighboring countries will be starting in coming of weeks. With the clear vision for coming 5 years, papeeno.com will be growing fast. Many brands from all over the world is already in pipeline to collaborate with.
Mr.Askar’s advise for who wants to start a business in UAE. “The major factor is UAE is open for any nationality or grade of people, it doesn’t matter if you have a Phs or you failed the metrics. Both of you have opportunity here, it is one if the safest country in the world, and you can earn tax free. As a country of diversity, you have customers everywhere, all the taste and culture of the people are here, you can selling anything here there are people who will be buying it, doesn’t matter if you are selling bread or gold, you equal opportunity for the success here. So don’t hesitate to start, without starting you cannot reach anywhere, but always do your market research any know about the risks.
You can follow the instagram page of papeeno.com here @papeenouae and follow the growth of the business. Also you can follow the Founder Mr.Askar Ali on LinkedIn