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Saudi ranks third in MENA by startup deals, funding – MAGNiTT

Saudi ranks third in MENA by startup deals, funding – MAGNiTT
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Riyadh – Mubasher: Various economic sectors in Saudi Arabia generate growing interest in startups in implementation of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, boosting the GCC nation to take the third spot in terms of the number of deals and total funding during 2019, according to a recent report by MAGNiTT, MENA’s most comprehensive startup data platform.

Head of Mad'a Investment Company that is specialised in financing and supporting startups, Abdullah A. AlOthaim, said this promising sector shows great diversity in projects. He expected the kingdom to jump to the first or second place in the total number of deals and volume of financing.

There is a need to further bolster this sector within a vision that aims to help small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to contribute 70% of the national economy, he added. 

Moreover, he attributed the growing investment activity in Saudi's startups to government support. Over the past few years, the government focused on entrepreneurship and startups, launching funds, conformity and accelerator programmes, and licensing small businesses.

These small business ventures also benefit major corporations and factories, provide job opportunities, and are a gate for new entrepreneurs to shine across various sectors.

The MAGNiTT report also highlighted that Saudi is one of the countries witnessing a fast growth in the startup space, given the initiatives launched by the Saudi General Authority for Small and Medium Enterprises (Monshaat) and the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA) that enabled the kingdom to become a hub for small businesses whilst attracting regional startups that look for other markets to grow.

Noteworthy to mention, Monshaat said a total of 71 startup investments were recorded in Saudi last year, up 92%. The total financing value amounted to SAR 251.25 million, an increase of 35%.