UAE At The Top Of Venture Debts Deals In The MENA Region


As per new reports, the UAE has been the most funded market through venture debt over the past few years. 

According to the report on Tuesday, in 2018 and 2022, the UAE accumulated more than 50% of the number of deals and value of funding which was reported for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region in asset management and investment banking firm Shuaa Capital and data platform MAGNET. 

The country saw local startups during the same period in Tabby, Trucker, Pure Harvest, and STARZPLAY, scratching deals with $275 million. The value represents half of the venture debt reported between 2018 and 2022 for only 15% of the total sales in the region. 

The deal with Tabby was the first mega transaction for venture debt in the MENA region, contributing to around 39% of the total venture debt funding reported in 2022. 

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Overall the region continued to attract funding for startups despite global economic conditions and uncertainty. 

Venture debt in the Mena region aggregated $260 million across 18 deals last year. And slightly down from $266 million in 2021. However, the report state that the decline is in line with the global contraction in venture investing. 

The average deal size in 2022 also fell to $14.4 million from 26.6 million in 2021. 

Natasha Hannoun, Head of Debt at Shuaa Capital, said, “The startup’s ecosystem across the MENA continues to woo both international and regional investors despite the global climate change of high inflation and aggressive interest rates rise.”

Other major projects 

The report also states that Saudi Arabia emerged as the second most funded market through venture debt, accounting for 29% of total funding in the region, pursued by Jordan and Egypt.

On the other side, Fintech accounted for the highest share of venture debt deals between 2018 and 2022, increasing yeh total venture debt funding by around 61% over the same period. 

Transport and logistics, e-commerce, and agriculture remained the industries of choice for investors. 

Recommended: MENA IPO Summit’s Inaugural Edition Starts In Dubai 


The above report shows that the UAE considered more than half of the regional deals between 2018 and 2022. The funding and the startups are being conducted, and investors are being attracted by the UAE and other countries of the MENA region under the funding deals. 

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