Aswaaq tests waters with online shopping

The Dubai-based retailer, owned by the Investment Corporation of Dubai, announced the launch of its online shopping platform and accompanying delivery service.

A store staff at Aswaaq's outlet at Mizhar in Dubai. Razan Alzayani / The National
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Aswaaq has become the latest local food retailer to dip its toes into online retailing, seeking to eliminate the need to actually visit a supermarket for grocery shopping.

The Dubai-based retailer, owned by the Investment Corporation of Dubai, yesterday announced the launch of its online shopping platform and accompanying delivery service.

Deliveries will initially be available in the Dubai districts of Umm Suqeim, Umm Al Sheif, Al Manara, Dubai Internet City, Dubai Media City, Knowledge Village, JLT, Tecom, Dubai Marina, JBR, Palm Jumeirah, Al Sufouh, Al Safa, Al Wasl and Al Badaa.

Customers will be able to pay for deliveries via e-payment, loyalty card points, cash or credit card (both online and on delivery), with delivery options from between 9am and 9pm.

“We are eager to provide the highest-quality services to our customers and aim to abide by Dubai Smart Government’s objective to serve customers with easy and convenient services,” said Affan Al Khoori, Aswaaq’s deputy chief executive.

“Our vision is to enable our customers with complete access to a range of products that exceeds 5,000 [items] in phase one of the service, any time, anywhere.”

Online grocery delivery remains in its infancy in the UAE; Geant is the only major hypermarket chain in the country to offer an online delivery service, which it launched in mid-2013.

Other online grocery retailers include Ripe, Fresh2Me and trolley.ae.

The brainchild of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, Aswaaq was founded in 2008 to foster national identity and to increase the number of Emiratis working in retail, from administration to front-line roles that were not traditionally filled by UAE nationals.

The company currently has nine stores throughout Dubai.

jeverington@thenational.ae

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