Startup Wrap: Regional Startup Action Explodes.

Startup Wrap: Regional Startup Action Explodes.

CAIRO: The startup ecosystem in the Middle East and North Africa region experienced a surge in activity as venture investments and acquisitions increased.

Merit, a Saudi Arabia-based software-as-a-service provider, raised $12 million in a pre-series B funding round led by Alistithmar Capital i-Cap and followed by existing series A investors Tech Invest Com and Hambro Perks Oryx Fund.

Founded in 2016 by Julie Barbier-Leblan and Thrishan Padayachi, Merit assists businesses in increasing customer and employee engagement via a suite of cloud-based SaaS platforms, enterprise solutions, applications, and software.

Riyad Capital, backed by Riyad Bank, has established the 1957 Ventures investment fund to drive transformational growth in Saudi Arabia’s fintech sector.

The fund aims to accelerate the Kingdom’s digital transformation by creating opportunities for innovative fintech business models.

Abdullah Alshwer, CEO of Riyad Capital, said, “The 1957 Ventures Fund embodies a forward-thinking financial vision aligned with the Kingdom’s ambitious digital transformation goals; this fund signifies a strategic investment in the future of Saudi fintech.”

“Our institutional approach will unlock new levels of innovation, driving both sector growth and sustainable economic impact,” he stated. Saudi web3 startup Sorbet raised an investment round from the Kingdom’s recently announced venture capital firm Adverse.

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