Under the deal, Careem will keep its brand and app unchanged, at least for now. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
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Ride-hailing service Uber announced Tuesday it has acquired Middle East competitor Careem for $3.1 billion, giving the San Francisco-based firm the commanding edge in a region with a large, young, tech-savvy population. Uber said the purchase consisted of $1.7 billion in convertible notes and $1.4 billion in cash. Uber's stiffest competitor in the Middle East had been Careem, which launched in 2012, three years before Uber entered the local market.Careem's CEO Mudassir Sheikha described the acquisition as a "milestone" for the company and for budding entrepreneurs in the region. Under the deal, he will lead Careem's business under Uber and will report to a board composed of three Uber representatives and two from Careem.
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