The coffee industry is the second biggest after oil, but it has been split up for a long time, even though it is one of the fastest-growing industries worldwide,The Middle East and North Africa.
In the Middle East, coffee has become one of the businesses many startups focus on, with most concentrating on e-commerce. As of March 2023, more than two billion cups of coffee are drunk worldwide daily .However, it must be digitalised.
COFE, a UAE-based online marketplace, is one of the top startups in this area, employing digital tools to transport coffee across the region.
The startup has now raised $25 million to grow its business from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi Arabia to Egypt in North Africa. COFE started its business in Egypt this year with a soft opening in a few cities. By mid-June, it hopes to be fully set up in more cities.
The company has the most significant coffee market in Saudi Arabia. It has teamed up with the Saudi Coffee Company, part of the Private Investment Fund (PIF), to spend $319 million in the national coffee sector over the next ten years. This will likely increase the coffee produced yearly from 300 tonnes to over 2,500 tonnes by 2030.
To keep up, the company is working hard to digitise the coffee experience in stores from a customer and marketing point of view. Here, customers can pay in advance for coffee beans and other things sold in cafes through its monthly subscription service, pickup, curbside, and delivery services, reward programs, and other features.
It just started a new service that lets customers order coffee from a nearby café and bring it to them in 10 minutes. COFE’s app lists more than 5,000 stores, and the company now works with about 1,300 businesses across its three leading platforms.