In part 2 of this 3-part series, we reveal the second batch of startups that raised funds last April.
1- Tamara- Saudi
Riyadh-headquartered nine-month-old ‘buy now pay later’ platform Tamara has raised $110 million in a Series A round. The round is comprised of debt and equity and comes just four months after the Saudi fintech raised $6 mn in the country’s largest seed round.
Its latest deal is the largest-ever investment raised by a fintech in the MENA and the largest-ever investment raised by a Saudi startup.
Launched in September 2020, Tamara enables online and offline merchants in Saudi Arabia and the UAE to offer their customers the option to defer their payment for 30 days or pay it in 3 equal installments over the course of 2 months.
According to its website, Tamara’s services are Shariah-compliant as the customers don’t have to pay any interest or fee for using it.
2- TCP Funding- UAE
UAE-based FinTech startup, Trade Capital Partners (TCP), announced it has secured its Series-A funding.
TCP provides working capital to regional importers, exporters, traders, distributors, wholesalers, and SMEs who are seeking collateral-free cash using invoices or inventory. Businesses looking for access to cash as oxygen for their business growth will come to TCP for the speedy approval process and simplified transactions.
These are made possible by TCP’s proprietary AI-driven approval process, future blockchain network, and deep analysis of more than 120 data indicators that are part of TCP’s algorithms and data models.
3- Solfeh- Jordan
The Innovative Startups and SMEs Fund (ISSF), the largest investment fund of its kind in Jordan, has announced a direct investment of $150,000 in Solfeh, a fintech micro-lending online platform that offers emergency cash advancements to salaried employees.
Solfeh presents socio-economically sustainable financial and commercial services that benefit employees and business owners alike. This is achieved through the delivery of emergency micro-loans to salaried staff in coordination with their companies – with amounts ranging from JOD 200 ($282) to JOD 1,000 ($1,410) and a flexible tenor of up to 25 months via a fully automated process that takes a maximum of 30 minutes for users to secure their money.
Solfeh specifically targets low-income companies and facilitates their continuity and sustainability by enabling them to maintain their liquidity, cash reserves, and human resources.
Employees of these establishments can request a loan without the need for a guarantor and select their suitable payment scheme, after which the business owner either approves or declines the application, with the option of directly overseeing and following up on the installment plan.
4- Appetito- Egypt
Formed in March of 2020, Appetito originally started out with a chain of delivery-only (or “dark”) grocery stores that offered next-day and pre-scheduled grocery delivery services. The company recently pivoted to a more on-demand model, offering delivery of 1,000 SKUs (Stock keeping units) in 60 minutes or less to certain parts of Cairo.
A big reason for the boost in grocery app funding is the global pandemic, which pushed a record number of people into grocery e-commerce.
5- Prexle- Saudi
Prexle helps retail store owners in industries such as groceries, clothes shops, electronics, and others to manage inventories, customers, purchase orders, discounts, and generate reports on sales, taxes, and inventories. The startup was founded in mid-2020, with the purpose to provide a unique and complete solution for retail owners.
The latest regulations in the Kingdom are imposing e-invoicing on transactions by the end of 2021. Prexle is one of the companies that are providing the service.