The Ride Uber giant is in talks about a possible merger with Careem, rival Middle East, according to Bloomberg, citing three people familiar with the matter.
The report suggests that several agreement structures have been discussed, although it also says that no agreement was reached, nor will it be possible to reach it, as the discussions continue and it may not come to anything.
Bloomberg sources said Uber had said he would need to own more than half of the combined company. , if you do not buy Careem completely.
Among the possible agreements that have been discussed are the current Careem leaders to manage a new combined business, day by day, with both brands retained in local markets.
Another proposal would be Uber acquired Careem entirely.
Bloomberg also reports that Careem, based in Dubai, is in talks with investors to raise $ 500 million, which he said could value the transportation company at approximately $ 1.5bn. It is said that Careem held early talks with banks about a potential IPO in January.
No company has publicly confirmed any conversation.
A Uber spokesperson declined to comment when asked to confirm or deny talks with Careem.
While a spokesperson for Careem, Maha Abouelenein, told us: "We do not comment on the rumors, our focus remains on building the region's leading internet platform for the region, which means expanding into new markets and duplicating our markets. existing when adding new products and services to the platform.
Uber has been reconfiguring its global business for several years, leaving Southeast Asia earlier this year after agreeing to sell its business to local rival Grab, while also taking a minority stake in the competitor.
And Uber made a similar exit deal with another rival, Didi, in China in 2016.
Last year he also launched his luck with Yandex.Taxi in Russia, with the pair combining efforts through an adventure , although he gave Yandex most of it.
But Uber has been talking about his position and potential in the Middle East, with CEO Dara Khosrowshahi telling him at a conference in May that he believes he can be the "winning player" in the market, as well as in India and Africa, and swearing that he would "control our own destiny" in those markets.
That does not necessarily get a Careem-Uber business off the table, of course, even though Uber's (public) claim is that it is not. I'm willing to settle for a minority stake in the region, as it has done in others. places.
Responding in April to a question from CNBC about whether it could acquire Careem, Uber's operations manager, Barney Harford, ruled out making more transactions for minority interests, saying: "It would be crazy for us as a hyper-growth company not to participate in conversations about potential partnerships, but we have been very clear, the markets in which we stand today are fundamental markets for us. "
Harford also stated that Uber was positioned to be able to invest in its growth markets chosen "indefinitely", thanks to having achieved profitability in other markets. It also aims for 2019 for an IPO.
In March, the Financial Times reported that Uber was in talks with its Indian rival Ola over another possible merger, and the newspaper sources were throwing cold water on the notion that Uber also took a minority stake.
Of course, Uber may not want to have to reduce his already reduced global ambitions. But you may have to leave if you compete in the selected plum markets.
Therefore, Careem's talk about newly started, provided he can convince his investors to take courage to the place and remain on board for Investors in Careem, who closed a $ 500M round of the Series And a year ago with a valuation of $ 1BN +, include VC Kingdom Holding based in Saudi Arabia, the German automaker Daimler and the Japanese technological giant Rakuten, who supposedly led the series. E.
Oskar Mielczarek de la Miel, managing partner of Rakuten Capital, who leads his mobility investments and Careem board member, declined to comment on the rumors of the Uber-Careem merger talks when we requested a conversation.  But I was happy to talk about the broader opportunity that investors saw coming on the road to share, telling us: "If you look at the industry, everyone is talking to everyone, and although consolidation is an obvious trend, it is not it will be limited to participants in shared trips, but they attract other technology companies, original equipment manufacturers and payment companies, to name a few. "
According to the Careem website, the booming travel company operates in 15 countries, mainly (but not only) in the Middle East, offering its services in around 80 cities in total.
While the Uber website lists it active in 15 cities in the Middle East and 15 in Africa.