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$2.88billion Invested in MENA Tech Start-Ups in 2021

The Digital Digest and Arabnet published “​​The State of Digital Investments in MENA 2019-2021” summary report, which offers a comprehensive look at the tech investment landscape in the MENA region, with clear analysis and concise insights highlighting major shifts in the industry.

Startups based in the UAE attracted the highest value and number of investment deals in 2021, Saudi continues to hold the second position in value of deals followed by Egypt and Jordan. Notably, the value of investment deals has grown across all early-stage funding rounds by at least 2x. The past year also saw the highest number of deals with participation from global investors.

“The overall value of deals in 2021 grew by 3.7x from 2020, fueled by the growth in technology adoption in the business sectors, as well as more proactive legislation in Saudi, the UAE, and Egypt,” said Racha Ghamlouch, co-founder of the Digital Digest, “It is now more common to see investment deals over $10million even at a seed stage, and even more common to raise from global investors at every stage of the startup lifecycle.”

“Between 2020 and 2021, the number of global investors investing in MENA has more than doubled. Interestingly, the report also noted that the participation of global investors increased significantly as the startup matures — from 5 per cent during the acceleration stage to 83 per cent during Series C,” said Omar Christidis, founder & CEO of Arabnet. “The report observed clear patterns of investor interest in a number of business models, with Buy Now Pay Later, Crypto Exchanges, Cloud Kitchens, and B2B Marketplaces all commanding 100M+ investment deals.”

“Today we are excited to be able to share these actionable findings with the ecosystem, and we are ready to support investors with specific insights to help them navigate the regional market.” 


  • Polly is a journalist, content creator and general opinion holder from North Wales. She has written for a number of publications, usually hovering around the topics of fintech, tech, lifestyle and body positivity.

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