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UAE’s BECO Capital Raises $100 Million, To Pump the Fund into MENA Tech Startups

The world-renowned venture capital firm closes a fundraising round to support its second tech-centric fund.

Regional venture capital (VC) firm, BECO Capital announces the successful close of its second fund with $100 million raised. This figure is more than what BECO bargained for with its initial $80 million target, driven by the potentially motivated technology investment landscape in the Middle East and North Africa.

Established in 2012, BECO Capital invests in early and seed-stage technology startups, preferably with founding and engineering teams based in the MENA region. To date, BECO Capital has made 22 investments across its two funds and has achieved remarkable success with its support of notable regional startups such as Careem and Property Finder, which have since collectively raised over $1 billion in post-operation capital and created more than 9,000 jobs in the region.

BECO Fund II includes support from several of its first fund’s investors and is maintained by globally renowned investors, such as RIMCO Investment and the International Financial Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group. Al Waha Venture Capital’s Fund of Funds, also known as Bahrain’s first regional sovereign wealth has also been a great supporter of BECO and has paved the way for other sovereign wealth funds who have also participated in this round. Other notable investors include well-known institutions such as Warba Bank, Watar Partners and KAAF Investments.

“Success stories like Careem have produced dozens of highly skilled and experienced individuals, who have built businesses to global standards and at an immense scale. We believe these individuals will go on to have the equivalent impact of PayPal in the region, building the next wave of great companies that will serve regional and global markets,” says Dany Farha, Co-founder and Managing Partner of BECO Capital.

BECO’s investment strategy highlights their mission to invest in a diverse range of emerging startups at the Seed and Series-A stage, and then provide continuous support to its best performing portfolio companies.

BECO Fund I has already seen 4 exists until now, the most recent of which include Uber’s infamous acquisition of Careem, and Cisco’s acquisition in Voicea in August 2019, which previously acquired BECO’s portfolio company Wrappup in April 2018. BECO has already backed three companies founded by ex-‘Careemers.’

“Although the entrepreneurship ecosystem is witnessing major growth, startups still face the same challenges. From lack of access to finance, to little or no mentoring, entrepreneurs are still struggling to jump-start their businesses. Venture funds like BECO are not only essential but they are key to giving entrepreneurs the right tool and expertise, in turn creating jobs and boosting the overall economic growth of the region,” said Sufyan Al-Issa, Regional Head of Operations MENA at IFC.

BECO Capital invests in companies that have extraordinary visions with a well-equipped and talent team that caters to whitespaces, are scalable and have sound defensibility at scale. With the substantial leap in the technology and innovation landscape in the region, startups like SWVL, Wahed and Kitopi, whom have all been backed by BECO, are now exporting business model innovation to the rest of the world.

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