MAKTOOB in Amman: A Rose Between a Rock and a Hard Place

  • Sami Mahroum


Maktoob launched the first Arabic-language Web site to offer an online e-mail service in 2000. At the time, the Web barely existed in the Arab world, and there were fewer than one million Arab-speaking Internet users. As the popularity of the Internet grew rapidly in the Middle East, Maktoob expanded to include messaging services, news, entertainment and other services tailored to the Arabic-speaking market.


Venture Capital Arab World Unique User Venture Capital Funding Angel Investor 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Abdelkader, R. 2010. Meet the chief yahoo! of the Arab world. Dinar Standard, 5 Oct 2010.
  2. Anzur, A. 2010. Lessons from creating the largest internet company in the Arab World: Samih Toukan. Webpreneur University, 15 Dec 2010.
  3. Boutin, P. 2009. Yahoo acquires maktoob, jumps into fast-growing Arabic ad market. Venture Beat, 25 Aug 2009.
  4. Clark, P., and S. A. Topol. 2013. Syria’s tech start-ups find refuge in Jordan. Bloomberg Businessweek, 29 Apr 2013.
  5. Ferris-Lay, C. 2011. Yahoo to double its staff in MENA, say CEO. Arabian Business, 9 June 2011.
  6. Gara, T. 2012. Tea with FT Middle East: Samih Toukan. Financial Times, 9 July 2012.
  7. Ghandour, F. 2009. The Samih and Hussam Maktoob story is even more relevant today. Fadi Ghandour Blog, 27 Aug 2009.
  8. MacMillan, D. 2009. Yahoo’s bold advance into the Middle East. Business Week, 27 Aug 2009.
  9. Mahroum, S., J. M. Al-Bdour., E. Scott., S. Shouqar., and A. Arafat. 2013. Jordan: The atlas of Islamic world science and innovation case study. Royal Society & Organisation of the Islamic Conference. 2013.
  10. Rocha, R., S. Farazi., R. Khouri., and R. Pearce. 2011. The status of bank lending to SMEs in the middle East and North Africa region: Results of a joint survey of the union of Arab bank. Policy Research Working Paper 5607, The World Bank &The Union of Arab Banks, Mar 2011.
  11. Rusli, E. 2010. Entrepreneur to entrepreneur: Meet the ron conway of the middle East (TCTV). TechCrunch, 16 Sept 2013.
  12. Sindibad. 2012. Investment report in internet & technology startups in the Arab world: 2012 update. A Sindibad Business Report. 2012.
  13. Sweis, R. 2012. Unrest encourages start-up funding for the middle East. The New York Times, 6 June 2012.
  14. Wamda. 2013. The story of yahoo’s acquisition of maktoob [Case Study]. Wamda, 13 Oct 2013.
  15. Wamda (2013) ‘5 Trends Driving VC Investment in the Arab World [Report]’, Wamda, 6th November 2013,
  16. WEF. 2013a. The global competitiveness report 2013-2014. World Economic Forum.
  17. WEF. 2013b. The Arab world competitiveness report 2013. European Bank of Reconstruction and Development & World Economic Forum. Geneva, May 2013.
  18. World Bank. 2013. Jordan economic monitor: Maintaining stability and fostering shared prosperity amid regional turmoil. The World Bank, Spring 2013. file:///F:/1%20Innovation%20-%20IPI%20Sami%202013/1%20Silicon%20Valley%20Project/1%20Maktoob/Lit%20review/WB%20report%20Spring%202013%20Jordan_EM_Spring_2013.pdfGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)> 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sami Mahroum
    • 1
  1. 1.INSEAD Abu Dhabi CampusAbu DhabiUnited Arab Emirates

Personalised recommendations