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Lebanese Website Shahiya Will Be Acquired for $13.5 Million

Shahiya proves that a good idea will always go a long way, even in the Arab world. Shahiya.com, one of the Middle East’s leading recipe websites, will soon be acquired by Japan’s Cookpad, to the tune of $13.5 million.

Shahiya, which means “appetite” in Arabic, is a food portal for Middle Eastern foodies, with both an Arabic and English platform. The website offers unique recipes from different cuisine, information about restaurants in region, nutritional advice from a registered dietitian and many more services that cater to anyone passionate about food.

The website has found huge success, with more than 3 million monthly users heading to Shahiya for cooking advice. Their success caught the attention of Cookpad International, Japan’s largest recipe site, which plans on fully acquiring Netsila, the Lebanese company that operates Shahiya, to gain access to the Arabic speaking market.

Shahiya’s acquisition will be the first exit for Middle East Venture Partners, a pan-Arab venture capital fund which has funded Netsila. The acquisition is expected to be complete in the first quarter of 2015.

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