Egypt’s Venture Capital firm, Sawari Ventures has announced its latest fund – $70 million – with the first closing of $35 million announced at the Africa 2018 Business Forum held in Egypt. The fund, dubbed “Sawari Ventures North Africa Fund I (SVNFI),” will be invested in technology and knowledge-driven companies in Egypt, Tunisia, and Morocco.
Sawari is also planning an Egypt only fund for parallel to Sawari Ventures North Africa Fund I (SVNFI) to increase their investments in Egyptian start-ups. The Egyptian Fund is said to include investors from National Bank of Egypt, Banque Misr, Banque du Caire, and Egypt’s Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA).
Investors who participated in the $70 million fund include – European Investment Bank (EIB), the UK’s CDC, the French Development Agency’s private sector financing arm Proparco and the Dutch Good Growth Fund (DGGF) managed by Triple Jump.
Sawari Ventures invests in entrepreneurs turning visionary ideas into market-leading companies in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). The company believes strongly that innovation sparks curiosity, speak to personal passions and inspire new markets – reason why they identify, serve, and provide capital for extraordinary entrepreneurs determined to transform the MENA region.
“We are creating the first of a kind VC vehicle to combine top tier international and local institutional investors to cement VC as an asset class in Egypt; we are initiating a sustainable Egyptian VC industry to ensure availability of funding for future entrepreneurs,” says Wael Amin, partner at Sawari Ventures.
For the company, the Middle East/North Africa is the next great investment opportunity because of its total population – higher than the US – and familiarisation with the digital technology as well as great quest for consumer technology products and services.
The fund will make investments with an average ticket size of $1.5 million in 25 growth stage companies in different sectors including ICT, Deep Technology, FinTech, Education Technologies, HealthTech, and Renewable and Green Energy, says Sawari in a statement.
“Investment appetite in Africa is growing aggressively, with an abundance of high-growth opportunities waiting for the right funding, and the right partners,” said Amin. “At Sawari Ventures, we have been building knowledge economy companies in this part of the world for years, and our role today will be to channel the available capital to the right entrepreneurs.”
The VC will fund early and growth stage innovative SMEs with the potential to scale rapidly and grow regionally and boost the local tech ecosystem.
It has invested in more than six tech start-ups – Vimov, Circle Tie, SilMinds, AlZawad Mobile Services, Financial Services Company (FSC), and Kngine.
Sawari Venture team combines experience and expertise professionals with track records in technology, operations, start-ups and investing in the the Middle East, Europe, and North/South America.
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