Zawya on the block
Wednesday, 11th April 2012
Nancy Davis Kho
Middle Eastern business portal Zawya's newly branded website seems to herald more than just a new look, with speculation that the company may be taken over by a leading US or UK organisation. This could be good news for researchers leading to better access for reliable Middle Eastern data.
On 1 April Middle Eastern business portal Zawya issued a press release calling attention to its overhauled website and new branding. The company, founded in 2000, said that the dramatic redesign was intended to broaden its reach “to a global level”.
A week later, we found out just how global. An article in The National, an English-language publication of Abu Dhabi Media, on Sunday speculated that Zawya is on the verge of being acquired for a price in the tens of millions of dollars. Suitors are generally believed to be Thomson Reuters, Pearson, and British media company Emap, which owns another major Middle Eastern business information platform, MEED.
According to the article, Zawya’s CEO, Gunnar Skoog, expects the acquisition to be completed within six weeks. Skoog also hinted that Dow Jones, which has an existing business relationship with Zawya, might also be in the hunt.
Moves by traditional global business data providers to beef up coverage of Middle Eastern business data make good sense in light of the thirst for updated, accurate information in a region that is going through rapid and significant change right now. Indeed, ISI Emerging Markets launched its own Emerging Market Information Services product focusing on the Middle East and North Africa product in December 2011.
The Zawya announcement hints at a compelling possibility – easier access for researchers to reliable Middle Eastern business data, perhaps within products already on the desktop. We’re hoping to commission reviews of these dynamic regional business products for VIP Magazine in the months to come.
About this item:
By Nancy Davis Kho
With more than a decade of experience in the product management and business development side of online content, Nancy Davis Kho now writes about the rapidly changing environment of digital content and its implications for business.
Nancy is a frequent contributor to EContent Magazine, Streaming Media, Enterprise Search Sourcebook, and the San Francisco Chronicle. Her website is at www.daviskho.com.
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