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More funds and funding opportunities were launched this week in Saudi and Egypt. Swvl expands to Switzerland and says its operations are breaking even. Reports of Innovation, SME-friendly cities, and status of telecom in Egypt. 

💰 Startup Investments: Q3 wraps up with $2.25B invested across 450 funding rounds. The UAE-based startups captured 36.9% of the value of investments across 28.7% of the deals. Saudi-based startups captured 34.9% of deal value for 22% of the number of deals. While Egypt-based startups recorded 24% of the deals in the region, but just 17% of the deal value. 

Even though the value of investments is lower in Q3 2022 compared to the same time last year, this is consistent with previous years where Q3 records the lowest investments of the year. 
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ZenHR, Saudi-based HR management startup, raised $10M in funding led by Rua Growth Fund, and joined by Endeavor Catalyst and angel investors. The startup was founded in 2017 and works with over 1000 corporates across 12 markets in MENA. 

NearPay, Saudi-based online payments solution, raised $3.6M in pre-series A funding led by Vision Ventures with participation from Hala Ventures, Arzan VC, Palm Ventures and angel investors. The startup was founded in 2020 and provides infrastructure for financial payments starting with a soft point of sale (POS) solution and says it has 15+ Manages Services Providers (MSP) and Payment Service Providers (PSP)

Jingle Pay, UAE-based fintech, raised funding from MoneyGram for a 12% equity stake in the startup, value undisclosed. As part of the investment, the two signed a strategic partnership that will allow individuals to conduct remittances via MoneyGram directly through the Jingle Pay app. Jingle Pay was founded in 2019 and was part of the Sanabil 500 MENA Accelerator in 2021.


🚀  Quick Investments

  • Glamera, (Saudi-HQ Egypt-founded) salon booking platfrom Startup, raised $1.3M in seed funding led by Riyadh Angels Investors (RAI), and joined by Techstars Accelerator, Ithraa Venture Capital, 100 Ventures, Lucrative Ventures, and Angel Investors.
  • Chari, (Morocco) B2B marketplace, raised $1M (10.9M MAD) in a series A funding from Endeavor Catalyst.
  • CardoO, (Egypt) consumer electronics startup, raised $660k in seed funding led by Alexandria Angels, and joined by Sofico Investments, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), and angel investors.
  • Decapolis, (Jordan) food traceability startup, raised funding from Fresh Del Monte Produce for a 39% stake in the business, value undisclosed.
  • Cryptyd, (Egypt) gaming startup, raised a new funding round from undisclosed investors, value also undisclosed.
  • Takhlees, (Saudi) logistics and customs platform, raised pre-seed funding from undisclosed investors, value also undisclosed. (AR)


Jahez, Saudi-based publicly-traded food delivery company, says that it values its acquisition of Marn, Saudi-based POS systems provider, at $16M. The intention to acquire the company was announced in April, without setting a value on the startup. The transaction is still pending regulatory approval.


Alloy Therapeutics, US-based a biotechnology ecosystem platform, raised $42M in series D funding from Mubadala Capital and other global investors. Mubadala had joined previous investment rounds in the company.

Loop Global, US-based electric vehicle charging startup, raised $40M in funding co-led by Agility Ventures and Fifth Wall Climate. Loop Global was founded in 2019 and develops hardware and software for electric-vehicle charging stations and networks.

Infiuss Health, Nigeria-based B2B healthtech startup, raised funding from UM6P Ventures (Morocco), value undisclosed. The startup was founded in 2016 and will use the investment to improve clinical trial participation and health equity in Africa.


💰 Funds and Programs

Algebra Ventures announced the first close of $100M of its second fund which was launched in April 2021. The fund was planned to close at $90M, however, the fund size has grown since. The fund has commitments from the Dutch Entrepreneurial Development Bank FMO ($10M), British International Investment (BII), and International Finance Corporation (IFC) ($15M), as well as the Egyptian-American Enterprise Fund (EAEF), European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) ($15M), Egypt’s Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Development Agency (MSMEDA), Dutch Good Growth Fund (DGGF), and private family offices.

Bunat Ventures announced the close of their first fund Bunat Ventures Fund I LP, which has already deployed investments in 10 startups. The fund had acquired an investment management license from Abu Dhabi Global Markets (ADGM), and focuses on Saudi and GCC-based startups. (AR)

The Saudi National Technology Development Program launched MVPLab, a new program to support idea-stage entrepreneurs in the kingdom in partnership with Nama Ventures and The Garage. The program plans to deploy $53M over the next 3 years to help idea-stage entrepreneurs develop MVPs with investments of $40k (150k SAR). Other partners include Seedra Ventures, Bunat Ventures, Rawahel by Raz, and the Center of Digital Entrepreneurship (CODE). [program link

Yango, Ivory Coast-HQ ride-hailing app, announced its launch in Dubai, UAE, marking the company's first entry into the GCC market. The app operates in more than 20 countries and unlike other ride-hailing services. 

TikTok MENA announced the launch of “TikTok Creator Hub” program in the UAE that aims to identify talents and connect them with the right mentors and skill-building experts.

Swvl expanded services to Switzerland under the brand name, ​​my Bux. The operations kicked off on August 20, 2022 and says it has conducted 100,000 trips since.



Swvl announced that operations in 50% of the countries it operates in, namely Egypt, Turkey, Germany, Kenya, and Jordan, turned Adjusted EBITDA positive or breakeven in August 2022. The company says it expects to turn more of its portfolio to breakeven by end of year.

As of writing this, Swvl’s stock is trading at $0.74 a share down more than 90% from its initial IPO price of $10 in March. 


The World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) published the ‘Global Innovation Index 2022’, which tracks the most innovative economies in the world and highlights innovation strengths and weaknesses. According to the index, the UAE ranks 31st globally and the highest in MENA followed by Saudi which ranks 51st globally, and Qatar ranking 52nd. It also finds that Jordan and Morocco perform significantly better with innovation than expected for the level of economic development that countries have.

The National Telecom Regulatory Authority of Egypt (NTRA) published infographics that indicate the use of apps within 24 hours in the summer of 2022. Compared to the same period in the summer of 2021, the usage of mobile internet services increased by 46% as internet users also increased by 9.4 million. In addition, online shopping increased by 104% and gaming by 69%, whereas online meetings and emails decreased by 25% and 3.5%, respectively. [report] (AR)

Sortlist published ‘SME Guide: The Best Places in the UK and MENA to Start a Small Business', which analyzed factors such as broadband speed, public transport, population qualifications, office, and electric costs, and happiness as contributing factors. According to the guide, Riyadh ranks as the top city in MENA for SMEs to set up, followed by Dubai and then Kuwait.


Investcorp acquired a majority stake in Nour Internet for Communication and Information Technology Company (NourNet), Saudi-HQ B2B provider of cloud, cybersecurity, data centers and managed services, for an undisclosed value. NourNet was founded in 1998 and says it is serving over 1,200 businesses across 30 cities in the Kingdom. ​

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