Alabbar and MEVP launch $250 million VC fund

By Rajive Singh

Walid Mansour, Mohamed Alabbar, Walid Hanna and Rashid Alabbar at the MEVP fund launch

Fund to invest in emerging tech companies in Mena and Turkey

DUBAI 28 September 2017: Middle East Venture Partners (MEVP) announced the launch of its third Mena venture capital fund – the Middle East Venture Fund III (MEVFIII) – with a target size of US$250 million.

MEVFIII will invest in innovative early-stage and growth-stage tech companies in the Mena and Turkey.

The launch follows the announcement in May 2017 that Mohamed Alabbar and MEVP have entered a strategic partnership to create one of the leading venture capital investment platforms in the region.

Mohamed Alabbar said, “A new generation of tech-savvy young digital entrepreneurs is driving the growth of this region’s digital ecosystem. Their innovative ideas can bring transformational changes to the local economies. MEVP’s new fund will support emerging local tech companies with dedicated capital, specialised expertise, and operational support enabling them to reach their next level of growth.”

According to reports, venture capital investments in Mena was less than 0.03% of the GDP in 2016, significantly lower than 0.20% in India and 0.40% in the US. This lack in venture capital funding is in stark contrast to the tech savvy of consumers and businesses in Mena and Turkey and their growing demand for advanced and competitive technology products and services.

The target fund size of $250 million makes it one of the few independent regional venture capital funds capable of committing large investments to meet the growth requirements of tech companies. The fund will offer long-term investors looking for tech exposure a diversified investment vehicle.

Walid Hanna, MEVP Founder and CEO, said: “MEVP is a pioneer in the venture capital investment industry in this region. Since 2010, we have been committed to supporting regional tech entrepreneurs to grow their businesses into market leaders. We have a current investment portfolio in over 40 ventures, which has created more than 1,100 quality tech jobs for the region’s youth.”

He added: “Despite the market evolution in recent years, there remains a significant lag in the amount of capital available for growth stage venture capital funding. MEVFIII aims to address this gap: It is one of the largest venture capital funds dedicated to this region, and will help accelerate the growth of the venture capital ecosystem in meeting the growing demand for technology products and services.”

As a driving force behind the growth of the Middle East’s tech ecosystem, MEVP will seek passionate tech entrepreneurs who have the potential to build the next-generation of tech ventures and transform their ventures into market leaders, creating lasting value for all stakeholders.