OCTOBER 06, 2022
3 min Read
Investor Updates: October 6 2022
Bite-sized insights on major corporate and economic events in African markets.
Egypt SaaS Glamera secures $1.3m seed funding round
- SaaS startup Glamera has raised a seed round of $1.3 million, led by Riyadh Angels Investors (RAI), after relocating to Saudi Arabia where it covers seven cities as well as Cairo and Alexandria in Egypt.
- Founded in 2020 by Mohamed Hassan and Omar Fathy, Glamera provides B2B services to beauty and lifestyle services providers. It also provides a B2C marketplace where consumers find such providers and book sessions with them.
- The new funding will go towards launching the planned new services and expanding into more Gulf countries.
The enterprise software as a service (SaaS) space is one of the rapidly rising sectors in the Egyptian, and broadly African, startup ecosystem. More companies within the sector are scaling up and piquing investor interest. This is in part due to a projected growth in the space: the Middle East and Africa’s enterprise software industry is expected to grow to $31.4 billion by 2026, from $14.2 billion in 2021. Glamera is one of many technology startups looking to tap into this boom, by bringing offline businesses online with cloud-based business management tools.
Nigeria received $10.1bn diaspora remittance in H1 2022
- Nigerians received $10.11 billion as diaspora remittances between January and June 2022, representing a 9.6% increase compared to $9.23 billion received in the corresponding period of 2021.
- In contrast to the second half of 2021, Nigeria’s diaspora remittance inflow increased marginally by 0.9% from $10.02 billion, according to data obtained from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) by local publication Nairametrics.
- In the period under review, a sum of $23.3 million was recorded as remittance outflow from Nigeria, indicating a net inflow of $10.09 billion in H1 2022 as against a net value of $9.99 billion recorded in H2 2021 and $9.2 billion recorded in the corresponding period of 2021.
The improvement, albeit slight, in Nigeria’s diaspora remittance figures offers the apex bank more firepower to meet the increasing demand for FX amid the country’s ongoing forex shortage crisis. Beyond that, however, the trend gives credence to a number of remittance-focused tech startups—like NALA, Chipper Cash, Zazuu, and Sendwave looking to capture some market share from dominant traditional players that control as much as 80% of the market—and Pangea, daba Finance, and Bantaba, which aim to address help startups source capital by connecting founders with the diaspora wealth through digital infrastructures.
SWVL expands its clean mobility solutions to Switzerland
- Egypt-based mobility startup Swvl has expanded its services to Switzerland under the brand name, my Bux. Founded in 2017, Swvl currently serves 115 cities in 18 countries including Latin America, Europe, Africa, and Asia.
- Earlier this year, the UAE-based mobility solutions provider raised $21.5 million in private investment in public equity (PIPE) deal as part of its proposed business combination with Queen’s Gambit.
- In April this year, SWVL was listed on the Nasdaq via a SPAC merger deal for a share price of $9.95 but is now trading at $0.84, valuing the company at under $114 million.
Not often does an African firm expand into Europe or outside the continent. But for SWVL, there’s a major market opportunity in the ongoing “global transition” to clean/green technologies, which is predominant in Europe and North America. Since its founding, the Egyptian startup has rapidly expanded its geographical footprint mostly by acquiring smaller players such as Volt Lines, door2door, Viapool, and Shot across different countries.