UAE, Saudi Arabia tech investments on radar of US fund Capria

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Seattle-based Capria Ventures says aiming to capitalise on the growth of ed-tech, agri-tech, digital health and fintech

Seattle-based global investment fund-of-funds Capria Ventures has revealed plans to capitalise on the growth of ed-tech, agri-tech, digital health and fintech after announcing its first investment in the Middle East and Africa region.

Backed by international investors, including Vulcan Capital, the Ford Foundation, Bill Gates, the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation, Unitus Labs, and other leading impact investors, Capria Ventures recently approved its investment in UAE-based Global Ventures.

Jack Knellinger, partner, Capria Ventures, told Arabian Business that tech industries are “presenting promising and expansive opportunities in the new post-Covid-19 world”.

He said: “The first half of 2020 witnessed increased investment activity in 2020, despite the turbulence of the year, already generating 95 percent of total venture investments in the full year of 2019. The pandemic has catalysed digital transformation and adoption in the region, and these sectors are set to demonstrate the highest growth potential in the upcoming five to ten years.”

Knellinger added that countries of particular focus in the region included the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

Capria’s network of investing partners collectively manage over $400 million in assets, deployed in early stage/growth companies in Latin America, Africa, and Asia. Capria has over $100m in assets under management invested directly in India via Unitus Ventures, and in other markets via partners of the Capria Fund which takes anchor GP and LP positions.

Susana Garcia Robles, venture partner at Capria Ventures, said: “We are already seeing synergy between Global Ventures’ portfolio and the portfolios of our Capria network managers in Asia, LatAm and Africa.”

Global Ventures, which backs global-minded founders who lead growth-stage companies and use technology to transform emerging markets, has invested in 25 companies, operating across 15 markets, using capital from its two funds.

The second fund is focussed on technology companies addressing critical needs and demands in recently accelerated industries. Global Ventures is a leading provider of capital and value creation for start-ups in the MEA region.

Noor Sweid, founder and general partner of Global Ventures, said: “We are very excited to see the transformative impact this investment and partnership will have across the region.”

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