Egypt Independent: Business-Main news en CNN: Amazon buys Souq in big play for Middle East market <img src="" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-media_thumbnail" width="152" height="114" /><div>Amazon has had its eye on the Middle East for some time. Now it&#39;s finally made a move. It has agreed to buy the region&#39;s biggest e-commerce platform,</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&quot;Joining the Amazon family will enable to continue growing while working with Amazon to bring even more products and offerings to customers worldwide,&quot; Souq said in a statement.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>The statement did not disclose the size of the deal. CB Insights valued Souq at more than a billion dollars, after it raised $275 million from investors last year. Souq does not disclose financial information.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Amazon had to beat off local competition for the online marketplace.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Emaar Malls, an arm of Dubai&#39;s biggest real estate developer, said on Monday it bid $800 million for</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Founded 10 years ago by Ronaldo Mouchawar, Samih Toukan and Hussam Khoury, Souq has become the biggest player in the market. Mouchawar estimates online shopping in the Middle East was worth $20 billion in 2016.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>When Souq started out, e-commerce was virtually unknown in the Middle East. Back then, the company employed five people in Dubai. Now it has 3,000 workers across the Arab world and sells more than 8 million products in 31 categories.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Analysts at Standard Chartered estimate that e-commerce in the region is growing by 30% each year, and that many markets remain untapped.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>The acquisition is expected to close this year.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div> Tue, 28 Mar 2017 10:37:00 +0000 CNN 2477539 at sites/default/files/photo/2015/06/11/501184/amazon.jpg Tesco handed £214 mn in penalties over false accounting <img src="" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-media_thumbnail" width="152" height="114" /><p>Supermarket Tesco has agreed to a fine and compensation costs totalling &pound;214 million ($268 million, 247 million euros) after an accounting scandal at Britain&#39;s biggest retailer, the Serious Fraud Office said Tuesday.<br /><br />Under a deal struck with the SFO over an affair stretching back three years, Tesco will not face prosecution.<br /><br />However, charges have previously been brought against three former Tesco executives, who face trial over alleged fraud and false accounting.<br /><br />&quot;Tesco... has in principle reached a deferred prosecution agreement with the UK Serious Fraud Office regarding historic accounting practice,&quot; the supermarket giant said in a statement.<br /><br />This &quot;is a voluntary agreement under which Tesco Stores Limited will not be prosecuted provided the business fulfils certain requirements, including paying a financial penalty of &pound;129 million.&quot;<br /><br />In addition, Tesco will compensate shareholders by around &pound;85 million in total.<br /><br />Tesco had been accused of overstating profits by &pound;326 million between February and September 2014.<br /><br />Following the incident, the company appointed outsider and former Unilever executive Dave Lewis to replace long-standing chief executive Philip Clarke and oversee a drastic restructuring of the group, which in recent years has also faced fierce competition in the UK from German-owned discount retailers Aldi and Lidl.<br /><br />&quot;Over the last two and a half years, we have fully co-operated with this investigation into historic accounting practices, while at the same time fundamentally transforming our business,&quot; Lewis said in the statement.<br /><br />&quot;We sincerely regret the issues which occurred in 2014 and we are committed to doing everything we can to continue to restore trust in our business and brand.&quot;<br /><br />Tesco is the world&#39;s third-biggest supermarket group after France&#39;s Carrefour and global leader and US giant Wal-Mart.</p><p>&nbsp;</p> Tue, 28 Mar 2017 09:24:00 +0000 AFP 2477533 at sites/default/files/photo/2017/03/28/507556/tesco.jpg Egypt negotiating with G-8 countries on economic support: minister <img src="" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-media_thumbnail" width="152" height="114" /><p>Sahar Nasr, Minister of International Cooperation, announced that the government is continuing its negotiations with the G-8 countries to fulfill their commitments toward supporting the economic and social reform program signed by Egypt and the International Monetary Fund.</p><p>In a statement to Al-Masry Al-Youm, on the sidelines of meetings to sign a number of funding agreements with the French Development Agency, Nasr said she will visit Germany on Friday for talks on Berlin&#39;s pledges to support Egypt&#39;s economic and social reform program in the last quarter of 2016, as announced by German Chancellor Angela Merkel during her visit to Cairo. The meeting was also attended by Prime Minister Sherif Ismail, Minister of Health Ahmed Emad Eddin and the French Ambassador to Cairo&nbsp;André Parant.</p><p>Negotiations with these countries have resulted in agreements with France, Britain and Germany.</p><p>Negotiations are currently under way with Japan. As for negotiations with the rest of the group, these will be completed on the sidelines of Egypt&#39;s participation in the Spring meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, which will be held during the second half of April in Washington, according to Nasr.</p><p>Germany and Britain pledged their share in Egypt&#39;s reform program for up to about one billion dollars, a large part of which would be allocated to finance projects listed in the state budget, or abroad.</p><p>France announced, meanwhile, that it will supporting Egypt&#39;s reform program with nearly LE5 billion, a large part of which will be allocated to projects in the areas of health, education and infrastructure.</p><p>The Deputy Minister of Finance, Ahmed Kojak, told Al-Masry Al-Youm that the ministry&#39;s bodies are intensifying their efforts in coordination with the Prime Minister&#39;s Office, the Ministry of Planning and the Central Bank of Egypt to present the state budget to the House of Representatives before the end of March.</p><p>Kojak denied that the Cabinet plans to increase government salaries by 30 percent in the new state budget. He did not rule out a possible increase in bonuses saying all options are possible until the state budget is approved.</p><p>&nbsp;</p> Tue, 28 Mar 2017 08:58:00 +0000 Al-Masry Al-Youm 2477529 at sites/default/files/photo/2014/10/20/94/world_bank_economist_sahar_nasr.jpg Greek investment in Egypt adds up to one bln euros: Ambassador <img src="" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-media_thumbnail" width="152" height="114" /><p>The Ambassador of Greece to Cairo, Michel Christos Diamisis, said that Egypt is a close partner and a friendly neighboring country to Greece, pointing out that the volume of Greek investments in Egypt is about one billion euros for the last fiscal year.</p><p>He stressed that bilateral relations have greatly developed in the last ten years.</p><p>In his speech during the celebration of the National Day of Greece at the embassy on Sunday, Diamisis mentioned that the exchange of visits between senior officials gave impetus to the relations between the two countries; giving as an example of the visit by Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to Cairo in October 2016, as part of the tripatrite summit between Egypt, Greece and Cyprus.</p><p>Diamisis added that the close cooperation between Egypt and Greece is clear and continuous, and that Greek investments in Egypt have now reached about one billion euros; adding that these investments play a prominent role in backing Egypt&#39;s national economy and providing employment opportunities for Egyptians.</p><p>He referred to the great role of the Egyptian and Greek expatriate communities in boosting bilateral relations.</p><p>Greece has made great efforts in recent years to overcome the economic crisis that has had a major impact on large segments of the population; in addition to the financial burden caused by the refugee crisis, Diamisis said.</p><p>He pointed out that his country is now an attractive destination for foreign investment, saying that the number of tourists to Greece reached 27.5 million individuals in 2016.</p><p>&nbsp;</p> Mon, 27 Mar 2017 08:47:00 +0000 Al-Masry Al-Youm 2477511 at sites/default/files/photo/2015/01/30/499612/greece.jpg