• Smaller Small Medium Big Bigger
  • Default Helvetica Segoe Georgia Times

In an exclusive interview with Telecom Review during MWC24, Khalifa Al Shamsi, CEO, e& life discussed the company’s role in providing the best digital lifestyle services within global and regional markets.

How does e& life contribute to the MENA region's position as a driving force in the global tech landscape?

At e& life, we are deeply committed to enhancing the MENA region's standing in the global technology landscape. Our approach is multifaceted, combining innovation with strategic expansion to integrate digital services into our customers' everyday lives. Our recent endeavors, such as the acquisition of the Careem Everything App, have been monumental in expanding our digital footprint, adding millions of active users across the UAE and other Middle East markets.

This move not only boosts our platform with high-frequency services that drive customer engagement but also accelerates our vision of becoming a regional super app, offering an integrated array of digital services. In the realm of entertainment, our division evision has solidified its position as the largest content aggregator in the MENAP region through strategic acquisitions like STARZPLAY.

This has enabled us to offer a diverse range of content through both SVOD and AVOD models, catering to a wide audience. In the financial technology sector, e& money has seen a remarkable fourfold increase in transaction volume, reaching 880,000 registered users in 2023 and becoming one of the fastest-growing financial applications in the region. These achievements are a testament to our commitment to enriching the digital lives of our consumers and underpinning the MENA region's role as a tech powerhouse.

Within the entertainment, fintech and lifestyle domains, what is the importance of the next generation of talents in shaping the future success story of e& life?

The next-generation talents are the cornerstone of e& life's ambitious journey, especially in the domains of entertainment, fintech, and lifestyle. These young, innovative minds are not just the workforce of the future; they are the architects of tomorrow's digital landscape.

In the entertainment sector, our division evision has made significant strides, particularly with the acquisition of STARZPLAY, reinforcing its position as the largest content aggregator in the MENAP region. This strategic move, coupled with the launch of STARZ ON as an AVOD platform, underscores our commitment to providing diverse, quality content. The success of these ventures largely hinges on the creative and technological expertise of our talented individuals who bring fresh perspectives to content curation and digital distribution.

In the fintech realm, e& money, our flagship financial app, has witnessed exponential growth, becoming the largest fintech app in the UAE in terms of user base. This success story is a testament to the innovative spirit and technological prowess of our team. They have driven e& money to achieve a fourfold increase in transaction volume, catering to a wide range of financial needs of the UAE residents. The app's rapid expansion to 900K registered users in 2023 exemplifies how next-generation talent can leverage technology to create inclusive and accessible financial solutions. Our vision is to provide finance services to every UAE resident, whether banked, underbanked, or unbanked, and this vision is being realised by our talented team who continually innovate to enhance our fintech offerings.

Moreover, our strategic investment in Wio, a digital banking platform for SMEs and consumers dominating the UAE digital banking landscape, complements e& money's offerings, expanding our reach and capabilities in the fintech sector. This collaboration is another instance where the ingenuity and expertise of our young professionals are pivotal. They play a crucial role in merging traditional banking with modern fintech solutions, creating a seamless financial ecosystem for our users.

In summary, the next-generation talents at e& life are not just contributing to our current successes but are also shaping the future of digital entertainment, fintech, and lifestyle services. Their fresh ideas, combined with a deep understanding of technological advancements and consumer preferences, are essential in keeping e& life at the forefront of the digital revolution in the MENAP region and beyond.

Does e& life have any plans to expand to other sectors? How will technologies be harnessed to continue delivering seamless, robust, and best-in-class services?

Looking ahead, e& life plays a crucial role within the e& group by empowering our customers with cutting-edge technologies and services. We have set an ambitious goal to increase our revenue six-fold over the next five years.

This will be achieved by enhancing and growing our existing services in the consumer digital landscape, both organically and inorganically, with a focus on our MENAP footprint. In addition, the acquisition of a majority stake in the Careem Super App has opened new avenues for revenue generation. This strategic expansion allows us to evaluate our position in these domains and identify areas where we can compete effectively.

Our continuous innovation in our offerings and our commitment to introducing more features in the fintech space, such as lending, cards, and investments, are part of our strategy to lead this sector. The synergy created by leveraging e&'s strengths and existing digital ecosystem footprint and capabilities, combined with those of our partners like Careem or Wio, positions us well for future growth and success.

In 2024, how will e& life move forward to bring more power, freedom and joy to people both locally and internationally?

In 2024, e& life is poised to amplify the value of our existing services, further enhancing our customers' digital experiences. We started our fintech services last year, focusing on global and local payment services, and we plan to augment these services by introducing credit and lending solutions. In entertainment, we expanded our offerings from subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) to include free ad-supported video-on-demand (AVOD) solutions.

With Careem, we aim to expand into more cities, offering a comprehensive range of services through the 'everything app.' This expansion is aligned with our vision of bringing more power, freedom, and joy to people both locally and internationally. Our strategy for 2024 revolves around offering a diverse range of services on a single platform, eliminating the need for multiple applications and thus simplifying our customers' digital lives. This integrated approach, combined with our focus on innovation and customer experience, will drive our growth and reinforce our position as a leader in the digital lifestyle domain.

Pin It