13th November 2023 Funding and Investment Update
1. SaaS Firm Shipsy Acquires Cloud-Based Warehouse Management Company Stockone.
Shipsy Software as a Service (SaaS) has announced the completion of the acquisition of cloud-based warehouse management company Stockone and the provider of inventory management solutions in an undisclosed transaction, which will provide an expanded product portfolio with a comprehensive logistics management experience across transportation, warehouse management, and fulfillment. This will enable businesses to optimize logistics costs, deliver impactful customer experiences, and automate processes across a single platform. This strategic acquisition reinforces Shipsy’s commitment to providing a comprehensive logistics technology platform for enterprise customers across diverse industries. Shipsy stated that its acquisition of Stockone strengthens its leadership in the logistics technology landscape and paves the way for streamlining operations for modern, rapidly evolving commerce. It aligns with the global shift towards efficient and environmentally friendly logistics solutions and enables companies to serve customers while prioritizing sustainability and operational efficiency.
2. UAE’s Proptech Firm Nomad Homes Raises a $20 Million Series A Funding Round Led by Acrew Capital.
Nomad Homes have closed the software-backed market for residential properties across Europe and the Middle East with a $20 million Series A funding round led by Acrew Capital, a multi-stage investment fund, and the participation of Chime, Coinbase, Gusto, Cato Networks, and others. Nomad Homes is revolutionizing the home buying experience in Dubai by providing buyers with separate and neutral representation from sellers and exclusive access to the most extensive range of out-of-market listings in Dubai, Nomad Homes is the first in Dubai to provide a dedicated real estate expert to buyers, where customers get a reliable buying agent who acts as a single point of contact and provides expert and impartial advice separate from the agent selling the home. In addition, buyers get exclusive access to the most extensive collection of off-market properties across Dubai, which is supported by the company’s B2B Nomad Agent platform, and the company does all the services at no additional cost to home buyers because the standard purchase commission is shared with the agent selling the home. The startup said the funding will continue investing in growth, build an AI-based buyer helper pilot program, and launch Nomad Homes Private Client, a service for customers who purchase a single property or group of assets worth more than AED 10 million. Like cutting-edge private banking solutions, Nomad Homes’ client advisors provide expert guidance, develop personalised data-driven negotiation strategies, ensure absolute privacy to deliver a seamless experience tailored to wealthy buyers, and receive priority access to Nomad Homes’ exclusive range of off-market properties. The company operates in France, Spain, Portugal and the United Arab Emirates and has grown more than 24-fold despite high interest rates and headwinds in the real estate sector.
3. Neo Mobility for Last-Mile Logistics, Mobility, and Electrical Infrastructure in the UAE Secures a $10 Million Seed Funding.
Neo Mobility, the first company to specialize in last-mile logistics, mobility, and all-electric infrastructure, has launched innovative last-mile solutions in the UAE. The announcement came after the state-of-the-art sustainable solutions company successfully passed its pre-opening seed funding phase, raising $10 million in its initial closing phase of funding through green asset financing platform Delta Corp Holdings, Pyse Sustainability Fund, a global logistics and distribution company, and the participation of some angel investors. This considerable investment will directly feed into Neo’s innovative vision as it aspires to expand its operations to a massive fleet of 5,000 electric vehicles by 2025. NEO is committed to aligning its operations and business with the UAE’s Net-Zero Initiative and the COP28 agenda to contribute to a greener future as the first business-to-business services startup to offer last-mile solutions through electric vehicle infrastructure business models in the MENA region. As part of its efforts to support food delivery companies, e-commerce platforms, and logistics companies to achieve net zero emissions, Neo will launch its new fleet of GSO-certified electric motorcycles, which have a driving range of up to 175 kilometers. The Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology and the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) have approved the motorcycles. To ensure smooth operations and efficiency, Neo will implement an innovative, intelligent charging infrastructure for electric vehicles, with battery swap stations across the UAE, enabling cyclists to swap batteries in just 60 seconds easily. Neo will also enter the passenger transport sector, employing its fleet of Tesla cars for this purpose. It will implement advanced EV fast charging infrastructure across the UAE in phases, enabling drivers to recharge their cars in less than 30 minutes. Neo intends to lease its fleet to third-party logistics companies, contributing to the broader adoption of sustainable transport in the UAE and the surrounding region.
4. UAE’s Belong Closes $1.5 Million Pre-Series a Funding Round.
UAE-based company Belong, formerly known as ASKWHO, has closed its $1.5 million pre-chain A funding round without announcing participants, bringing the value of its investment raised so far to $3.5 million. The company was founded in 2019 by Michael Ischio and Matthew Gazziano, providing a social networking app dedicated to connecting users within cities. The Dubai-based company said it aims to use the funds to support its expansion within the UAE and in the US in San Francisco and New York.
5. Saudi Proptech Platform Ejari Raises a $1 Million Pre-Seed Round Led by Hambro Perks’ Oryx Fund and Sanabil 500.
Saudi real estate technology platform Ejari has announced the closing of a $1 million preliminary round led by Hambro Perks’ Oryx Fund and Sanabil 500 MENA, with the participation of some angel investors. Ejari was established in 2022 in Riyadh by Yazeed Al Shamsi, Fahad Al Baddah, Mohammed Al Khlaiwi, and Khalid Al Munif to provide a unique solution through Rent Now Pay Later residential rentals to meet tenants’ need for more flexible payment options in the Saudi rental market. Ejari launched its services in the third quarter of 2023 after obtaining the General Real Estate Authority’s licence, noting that many leases in the Saudi market are paid on an annual or semi-annual basis. Ejari allows tenants to pay their rent monthly, enabling landlords to receive the entire yearly rent at once. The service allows tenants to manage expenses and reduce moving costs to a new unit. Offering landlords can attract customers in a competitive rental market due to the availability of flexible payment options for the customer. It is worth noting that Ejari is participating as part of the tenth batch of the Saudi Telecom Company (STC) InspireU accelerator. The beginning of the year saw Ejari win first place in the Customer Experience Digitization Challenge as part of the Real Estate Innovation Challenge organized by the General Real Estate Authority and the General Authority for Small and Medium Enterprises (Monshaat). Ejari was also incubated as part of the first batch of the MVPLAB initiative of the National Information Technology Development Program (NTDP).
6. Egypt’s Health Technology Platform Almouneer Secures a $3.6 Million Seed Funding Led by UAE’s Global Ventures.
Egyptian health technology platform Almouneer has secured seed funding of USD 3.6 mn led by UAE’s Global Ventures and the participation of Proparco, Digital Africa, Wrightwood Investments, and other leading international funds and investors. The tour follows Almouneer’s rapid growth, serving more than 120,000 patients, with business volume doubling in the past year and its leadership team strengthened with several key appointments. The company stated that 2024 is an important year, as Almouneer will launch the DRU app for doctors, connecting healthcare providers with millions of patients. The company’s strategy is to expand regionally and internationally with the expectation to enter the markets of Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and African countries, including Nigeria and Kenya, by next year. The new funding will support the development and expansion of DRU, the first lifestyle and diabetes management platform in the Middle East and Africa, and the proceeds will further leverage the latest DRU technologies to grow the broader ecosystem to provide physicians, health trainers, laboratories and nutritionists. Almouneer will also create the first personalized treatment plans for patients online. DRU is currently connected to continuous glucose monitors and other glucose monitors and will soon make it possible to connect to wearables such as smartwatches.
7. Tunisian Fintech Company My Easy Transfer Receives New Funding From 216 Capital.
Tunisian fintech company My Easy Transfer has secured new funding from 216 Capital, which had previously invested $423,000 in My Easy Transfer. The startup was founded by brothers Ismail and Gebran Khenissi, IT and financial professionals. The company was established in March 2022 to simplify money transfer services for the Tunisian community abroad, estimated at 2 million people, and money transfers from this community are expected to reach 10 billion dinars by the end of 2023. My Easy Transfer grew strongly in just one year, reaching 10,000 customers. This funding round marks a significant milestone in the history of the startup, which aims to develop its platform to meet all the payment needs of the community, especially money transfers, mobile credit, and bill payments through a single mobile application, My Easy Transfer also plans to develop its model to become the first super payment app for the Tunisian community, strengthening its presence in Tunisia through new partnerships and expanding into new markets in Africa such as Morocco, Mali and Senegal.
That’s all for today’s funding update. Stay tuned for more updates on the MENA startup scene, and remember to subscribe to our newsletter or browse our archives for more news and analysis.
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