Global Marketing News –11th June 2015
Middle East is leading global ecommerce growth
A report by Payfort has revealed the Middle East to be the fastest growing region in the world for ecommerce.
Ecommerce purchases rose by 45% in the Middle East last year, compared to growth of just 20% and 35% in Europe and Asia respectively.
The UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Egypt were the countries with the largest ecommerce markets.
The Middle East ecommerce market is worth around 14 billion US dollars currently, with this predicted to rise to 20 billion US dollars by 2020.
The majority of Middle Eastern ecommerce shoppers are men, with the exception of the UAE where the majority of online shoppers are young women.
The report highlighted “regional instability” as the biggest obstacle for the ecommerce industry in the region, with mistrust of online payment options coming in second place.
Cash-on-delivery is the preferred payment option in the Middle East, accounting for around 70% of all payments.
Aliyun cloud storage solution to expand internationally
The Chinese tech giant Alibaba has announced that it wants to expand its cloud storage business Aliyun internationally.
Alibaba has entered into partnerships with 7 different data centre companies, including some rumoured to be in the US and Singapore.
The partnerships will allow Aliyun to use the data centres for its cloud storage business, putting it in direct competition with other global cloud storage companies such as Google, Microsoft, Amazon and IBM.
Aliyun has said there is strong demand for cloud storage solutions, saying: “There are more and more storage problems and more and more clients are in need for bigger storage capabilities”.
The global cloud storage industry is worth around 16 billion US dollars.
Yahoo to axe services around the globe
Yahoo has announced that it will cut several of its services later this year.
Yahoo Maps will be discontinued this month, with its PlaceSpotter and GeoPlanet APIs shutting down later in the year as well, along with its Pipes content aggregation app.
The search giant will also stop supporting Yahoo Mail on Apple products running on old operating systems.
It will also be stopping its following services in these countries: Yahoo Entertainment in Singapore; Yahoo Movies in Spain; Yahoo Music in Canada and France; Yahoo Music and Yahoo Autos in the UK, Germany, France and Spain; and the Yahoo search engine in the Philippines. The Yahoo Filipino homepage will redirect to Yahoo Singapore.
Google admits mistakes in Europe
Google has admitted that it has made mistakes in Europe.
Google’s search engine, Android operating system, tax practices and privacy policies are all currently being investigated by the EU for allegedly breaking European laws.
Google strenuously denies that it has broken any laws, saying that there is no evidence that any of the companies that have filed complaints against the search engine have even been affected as a result of Google’s alleged anti-competitive practices.
Although the search giant denied it had broken any laws, it did admit that it had handled things badly. “We don’t always get it right,” commented the head of Google’s EMEA branch Matt Brittin.
Weibo to censor pictures of women in swimwear
And finally, the Chinese social network Weibo has announced that it will start removing images of women in their underwear or swimwear.
The announcement is in response to the Chinese government’s strict internet censorship rules, which ban pornographic and other “offensive” content.
It is unclear whether this censorship will apply even to images of female swimmers competing in sports tournaments.
Modeling agencies will have to submit official documentation to Weibo to prove they are a legitimate business. Agencies that fail to do so will have their accounts taken down.
The announcement has been met with criticism from Weibo users, who have made comments such as, “I didn’t realise I lived in North Korea”.
Weibo is a Chinese micro-blogging site similar to Twitter. It is one of the most popular social networks in China, although membership has dropped by 9% in the last year.
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