UAE gives green light for $3.1bn Uber-Careem deal

The UAE has rubber-stamped Uber’s $3.1 billion acquisition of Dubai-based ride-hailing app Careem.

An Uber spokesperson said: “We welcome the decision by HE Sultan Al Mansouri, Minister of Economy of the UAE, to unconditionally approve Uber’s pending acquisition of Careem. Uber and Careem joining forces will deliver exceptional outcomes for riders, drivers, and cities, in this fast-moving part of the world.”

The acquisition, which will consist of $1.7bn in convertible notes and $1.4bn in cash, will be the largest technology transaction to ever take place in the Middle East.

A spokesperson for Careem added: “We welcome the decision and look forward to pursuing the platform opportunity and leapfrogging the region into the digital future.”

The deal will see Uber acquire all of Careem’s mobility, delivery and payments business. The company will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Uber, although they will continue to operate as an independent company under the Careem brand, with the front-end operations untouched.

The UAE is the first country in the region to grant the approval, with Uber and Careem continuing to work with authorities to obtain the remaining approvals across the Middle East, North Africa and Pakistan region.

The Uber-Careem deal has brought the value of acquisitions involving targets in the Middle East and Africa to $103.4bn.

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