Weekly Startup Ecosystem Overview in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) / 10 – 16 March

Last week, there were 11 investments and 1 secondary transaction in the MENA between 10 – 16 March:

Investments:

5 Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), 4 United Arab Emirates (UAE), 1 Kuwait, 1 Tunisia

Acquisitions:

1 United Arab Emirates (UAE)

Bonus:

1 UAE-based investor financed a Madrid-based startup.

Sectors Received Investments:

3 Fintech

2 Marketplace

2 Edtech

1 Information Services

1 E-commerce

1 Traveltech

1 Healthtech

1 Artificial Intelligence

News of the Week

🎯 Fintech startup Sav raised funding.

Sav, a startup that lets users keep track of their savings, recevied an investment of $750.000 in pre-Seed funding round led by angel investors.

Transaction Type: Investment

Investment Amount: $750.000

Investors: Angel investors

Co-founders: Purvi Munot

Country: United Arab Emirates (UAE)

🎯 Payment platform Tamara raised funding.

Tamara, a buy now, pay later platform that enables customers to pay in installments, has raised $150 million in debt financing round from Goldman Sachs.

Transaction Type: Investment

Investment Amount: $150.000.000

Investors: Goldman Sachs

Co-founders: Abdulmajeed Alsukhan, Turki Bin Zarah, Abdulmohsen Albabtain

Country: Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA)

🎯 Financial service Qlub raised funding.

Qlub, a fintech startup that develops an ultra-fast payment solution for consumers in restaurants, has raised $25 million. The investment round was co-led by Cherry Ventures and Point Nine, with participation of STV, Raed Ventures, Heartcore, Shorooq Partners, FinTech Collective, Al Dhabi Capital and angel investors.

Transaction Type: Investment

Investment Amount: $25.000.000

Investors: Cherry Ventures, Point Nine, STV, Raed Ventures, Heartcore, Shorooq Partners, FinTech Collective, Al Dhabi Capital, angel investors

Co-founders: Eyad Alkassar, Jianggan Li, Mahmoud Fouz, Oscar Bedoya, Ramy Omar

Country: United Arab Emirates (UAE)

🎯 Marketplace Cofe raised funding.

Online coffee marketplace Cofe has raised $15 million in Series B funding round led by Wa’ed Ventures. eWTP Arabia Capital, Al Imtiaz Investment Group, KISP Ventures (KFH Capital) and Rasameel Investment Company also participated in the investment round.

Transaction Type: Investment

Investment Amount: $15.000.000

Investors: Wa’ed Ventures, eWTP Arabia Capital, Al Imtiaz Investment Group, KISP Ventures (KFH Capital), Rasameel Investment Company

Co-founders: Ali Al Ebrahim

Country: Kuwait

🎯 NFT marketplace Nuqtah raised funding.

NFT powered creative marketplace Nuqtah, has raised an undisclosed Seed round led by Animoca Brands, with participation from Polygon and angel investors.

Transaction Type: Investment

Investment Amount:

Investors: Animoca Brands, Polygon, angel investors

Co-founders: Salwa Radwi

Country: Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA)

🎯 Online learning platform Almentor raised funding.

Almentor, a video-based online learning platform accessible through B2C and B2B channels, received an investment of $10 million in pre-Series C funding round led by e& capital. Existing investors Partech, Sawari Ventures, Egypt Ventures, Sango Capital and Endure Capital also participated in the investment round.

Transaction Type: Investment

Investment Amount: $10.000.000

Investors: e& capital, Partech, Sawari Ventures, Egypt Ventures, Sango Capital, Endure Capital

Co-founders: Abdelrhman Fahmy, Hesham Heikal, Husni Khuffash, Ibrahim Kamel, Ihab Fikry

Country: United Arab Emirates (UAE)

🎯 Edtech startup Shape raised funding.

Shape, a startup that helps professionals deliver personalised training session, has raised a new funding from The Oman Technology Fund. The amount of investment was not disclosed.

Transaction Type: Investment

Investment Amount:

Investors: The Oman Technology Fund

Co-founders: Rahma Abid

Country: Tunisia

🎯 DaaS platform Kara raised funding.

Kara, a device-as-a-service platform that rents out consumer electronic devices to businesses, received an investment of $586.000 in pre-Seed funding round led by Falak Investment Hub, Lean Node and angel investors.

Transaction Type: Investment

Investment Amount: $586.000

Investors: Falak Investment Hub, Lean Node, angel investors

Co-founders: Saad Zaitoui

Country: Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA)

🎯 Fashion marketplace Bazaara raised funding.

Fashion app Bazaara, which offers users to buy and sell pre-loved fashion items and accessories directly from other users, received an investment of $230.000 in pre-Seed funding round led by Flat6Labs, with participation from angel investors.

Transaction Type: Investment

Investment Amount: $230.000

Investors: Flat6labs, angel investors

Co-founders: Alyssa Mariano

Country: United Arab Emirates (UAE)

🎯 Travel tech startup Meshini raised funding.

Meshini, a startup that offers travel and tourism solutions received an investment of $8 million in Seed funding round from Alshadadi Information Technology Company and other investors.

Transaction Type: Investment

Investment Amount: $8.000.000

Investors: Alshadadi Information Technology Company, other investors

Co-founders:

Country: Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA)

🎯 Medical product seller Aumet raised funding.

Aumet, a startup that sells medical products from manufacturers to healthcare providers by automating finding distributors and product registration, received an investment of $7 million in pre-Series A funding round from AAIC, AIJ Holdings, Hamad Ali Sagri family office, Tijah Holdings, Cigalah Group and Shorooq Partners.

Transaction Type: Investment

Investment Amount: $7.000.000

Investors: AAIC, AIJ Holdings, Hamad Ali Sagri family office, Tijah Holdings, Cigalah Group, Shorooq Partners

Co-founders: Ashraf Samhouri, Jamal Abu Samra, Mohammad Issa, Tariq Khader, Yahya Aqel

Country: Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA)

🎯 F&B data analytics platform Burger Index raised funding.

Burger Indez, an AI-based F&B data analytics platform that provides market, competition and consumer intelligence in real time, received an investment of $1.3 million in Seed funding round. The investment round was led by Flat6Labs through its Ignite Programme, with participation from F Capital and Cosmin Manea.

Transaction Type: Investment

Investment Amount: $1.300.000

Investors: Flat6Labs, F Capital, Cosmin Manea

Co-founders: Maurice Karam, Wassim Berro

Country: Spain

🛒 Labayh acquires Nafas.

Saudi Arabia-based well-being and mental health platform Labayh has acquired meditation app Nafas.

Transaction Type: Acquisition

Investors: Labayh

Co-founders: Saif AL Essai

Country: United Arab Emirates (UAE)

Other News:

📌 KSA-based GoDaddy, a company that supports entrepreneurs around the world, has signed a partnership agreement with Monsha’at to empower SMEs and young entrepreneurs to take their business online.

📌 The Social Development Bank (SDB) has announced a new $6.4 billion fund to support ntrepreneurs, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), and freelancers across the Kingdom over the next three years.

📌 Egypt-based VC Flat6Labs has launched a $95 million Africa Seed Fund to support early-stage tech start-ups in North, West and East Africa.

📌 Beta Lab, a VC and co-creation studio dedicated to fostering the growth of deep technology startups, has launched in KSA. Beta Labs, aims to to attract global founders, talents, and startups to Riyadh, serving as a launchpad for homegrown deeptech startups.

📌 The Saudi Financial Academy and AstroLabs have partnered with to offer a future-forward data for fintech training program aimed at inspiring the next generation of fintech pioneers in Saudi Arabia.

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