Invest in digital economy or become 'irrelevant', says Alabbar

Regional companies not investing in digital technology will become “irrelevant” in the near future, UAE billionaire Mohamed Alabbar said on Monday.

“Not every idea or finance must come from the venture capitalists from California. The region needs to invest in digital technology, which is the future,” he said addressing the Arabian Business Digital Forum.

He said the world is changing very fast and everyone has to strive to remain relevant.

Alabbar, who is also the chairman of Emaar Properties, said he was expecting 95 percent of the company’s staff to become “irrelevant in the next few years, driven by the technological changes.

The billionaire has recently launched Noon.com, the Gulf’s new $1-billion e-commerce platform.

The online shopping website, which will go live in January 2017, in the UAE and Saudi Arabia will have 20 million products spread over various categories such as home furnishing, electronics, books and fashion.

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