Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

Startup Companies in Middle East Soar During H1 2019

Startup Companies in Middle East Soar During H1 2019

Sunday, 21 July, 2019 - 09:45
General view of Dubai, United Arab Emirates October 15, 2018. (Reuters)
Dubai - Asharq Al-Awsat
Middle East and North Africa (MENA) startups data platform MAGNiTT has released its H1 2019 MENA Venture Investment Report.

The report provides an in-depth analysis of emerging-market financing and investment groups funded in the MENA region.

It highlights the positive news regarding the emerging business environment and the transactions’ record, which indicates the significance of growth achieved.

Compared to last year’s H1 report, MAGNiTT has pointed out an increase of 66 percent in total funding and 28 percent in number of deals.

While, in terms of sectors, fintech maintains its top position as the most active industry with 17 percent of the deals made, followed by e-commerce at 12 percent and delivery and transport at eight percent.

“We predict that 2019 will be yet another record year for the MENA ecosystem, in terms of number of deals and amount of dollar invested,” said Philip Bahoshy, founder and CEO, MAGNiTT.

“Signs are promising that we are seeing a maturing ecosystem. With the growth of startups, we have seen more success in large investments, more companies leaving and continued interest from international investors in the region, particularly from Asia,” he noted.

He pointed out that “after Souq’s $580 million acquisition by Amazon in 2017, Dubai-based ride-hailing app Careem became the first unicorn exit in the region as the startup was acquired by international rival Uber for $3.1 billion.”

He said this would be an incentive to encourage and enhance the entrepreneurial environment in the region.

The report revealed that 238 startup investment deals have taken place in the region in the first half of this year, amounting to $471 million in total investment.

According to the report, the UAE is the most active ecosystem in the region, having secured 26 percent of the deals made in H1, followed by Egypt at 21 percent and Lebanon at 13 percent.

MAGNiTT has earmarked Saudi Arabia as one of the fastest growing ecosystems, having recorded 26 investments for the same period.

Editor Picks