e& capital launches funding strategy for US$ 250m VC Fund
e& capital, the investment pillar of e& (formerly Etisalat Group), disclosed its latest deals and insights into how it plans to further progress its aspirations as a global technology and investment conglomerate through its USD 250 million e& capital Venture Capital. e& capital will further drive the tech ecosystem through larger investments at the growth stage beyond its VC fund.
At GITEX Global, e& capital demonstrated how it is supporting early-stage entrepreneurs who possess the vision to build big businesses by facilitating education, mentorship, networking and funding opportunities. In particular, e& will be supporting the top regional female founders through prize money and other tangible rewards during one of the region’s leading exhibition and conference.
So far, e& capital investments has made a strategic investment in VUZ, an immersive social app that allows users to stream and experience a new level of immersive realism in Extended Reality (XR) and metaverse digital experiences. e& capital has also funded Lablabee, a tech startup which will grow the world’s first hands-on lab platform for the telco cloud, offering training that is more interactive and accessible.
Kushal Shah, Head of Venture Capital, e& capital, said, “As the investment arm of e&, our vision is to invest in business ideas that empower a better and brighter digital future. Building on the strong foundations of e& as a global technology and investment conglomerate, we are now taking massive strides towards supporting visionary tech businesses by enabling synergies and providing access to innovation. Major change never happens overnight, and we are gearing up for a long-term goal of enabling meaningful progress that moves the world forward. As we build a portfolio of fast-scaling businesses that are already proven winners, we are looking forward to setting things in motion in VC and growth investments, as we rely on a thorough process that will continuously build and maintain momentum.”
According to MAGNiTT’s Q3 2022 MENA Venture Investment report published recently, funding in the first three quarters of 2022 stood at USD 2,331 million, recording a yearly increase of around 20 percent. In continued positive momentum, the UAE, Egypt and Saudi Arabia maintained the top three positions at the level of the number of deals and value of funding capturing more than 75 percent of the region’s shares.
FinTech remains the industry of choice, ranking first with a share of 21 percent and value of funding which edged up by 74 percent to rest at USD 747 million. Looking at the number of deals, e-commerce and transport & logistics ranked second and third with respective shares of 15 and 10 percent.
Globally, the value created by startups is about USD 3.8 trillion in ecosystem value, which is almost at par with the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of a G7 economy, according to advisory firm Startup Genome.
Given the above venture capital funding trends in the region, e& capital is keen to promote the positioning of the MENA tech sector amongst its global peers, by successfully and sustainably scaling local startups to reach the global stage. e& capital is also ready to make bold, steady investments and stay the course, driven by teams and expertise that work in sync with the market pulse.