Startup news ticker: Lamudi launches mobile version; e-commerce store accepts Bitcoins

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Welcome to Wamda's weekly startup news ticker, which will offer quick announcements and stories relevant to the region. If you have a quick news release to share about your startup, let us know at editor@wamda.com  

Lamudi launches an optimized mobile website for iOS and Android 

Lamudi, a real estate classifieds player in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, has recently announced the launch of an optimized mobile website for iOS and Android.

The website, which offers buyers, sellers, landlords, and renters a means to find homes, land, and commercial properties online, has around one million monthly visitors from all 16 countries around the world, according to the press release. “Over the course of the past months, we have successfully developed our real estate websites in several markets in Asia, Africa, and Latin America,” says Kian Moini, co-founder of Lamudi. “It’s predicted that by 2015, mobile shopping will account for $163 billion USD in sales worldwide, 12% of global e-commerce turnover.”

With the new optimized website, visitors will benefit from a higher speed on mobile devices, they will get a simpler layout with the same functionality, as well as other features that will make surfing via mobile easier.

Lamudi is currently available in Algeria, Bangladesh, Colombia, Ghana, Kenya, Mexico, Morocco, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Rwanda, Peru, the Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Tanzania, Tunisia, and Uganda. For more information you can visit their website here.

Spanish online travel agency is now accepting Bitcoins 

Established 12 years ago, Destinia, a leading online travel agency in Spain, has started accepting Bitcoins.

Today, the platform features offers from more than 230,000 hotels and operates worldwide with major expansion in the Middle East, according to a blog post.

Payments in Bitcoins are done securely and the process is similar to any other payment method without taking any additional commission. Prices will show in milibitcoins (mBTC), where one Bitcoin is equivalent to a thousand milibitcoins.

“This payment method is an innovative and secure model that benefits companies and consumers. [Users] save on banking costs, which means we can offer them cheaper service,” says Amuda Goueli, Destinia’s CEO.

OpenSooq Launches its first TV Campaign on MBC 

Regional classified website OpenSooq has launched its first promotional TV campaign on MBC.

The campaign targets the Arab world in particular and explains OpenSooq’s idea to Arab viewers. It is divided into three separate videos reflecting the most popular sections on the site: buying a car, hiring, and property hunting.

The site also recently launched OpenSooq’s smartphone app, available on Android and iPhone.

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