Egypt’s largest national banks – Banque Misr, National Bank of Egypt, and Banque du Caire – have partnered Global Ventures, a leading MEA-focused venture capital firm, to launch fintech-focused investment fund Nclude, following approval by the Central Bank of Egypt.
The fund is an implementation of the country’s strategic vision to support young innovators, with Nclude by Global Ventures to focus on accelerating fintech innovation and driving financial inclusion.
The initial US$85 million investment is led by Banque Misr as an anchor investor, with the National Bank of Egypt and Banque du Caire as strategic investors. Other investors include the e-Finance Investment Group and Egyptian Banks Company, while the fund is also set to attract further investment from prominent regional and international investors.
The fund has already made its first investments in four companies, namely Khazna, a financial super app that offers convenient, technology-driven financial solutions to underserved consumers; Lucky, a consumer fintech app providing offers, cashback rewards, and credit; Mozare3, an agri-fintech platform that provides smallholder farmers with direct access to inputs financing; and Paymob, a leading digital payment service provider.
In addition to investing in existing startups, the fund will be supported by Shipyard Technology Ventures, a global venture builder, which will provide development capabilities to help create fintech startups that address local and regional opportunities.
“This step is an implementation of the directives of President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi to support innovative youth in the fintech and fintech-enabled sectors, as well as CBE’s fintech and innovation strategy which aims to create an enabling environment for the fintech industry and adopt more innovative fintech solutions capable of delivering banking and financial services to all segments of society more easily and at less cost, as a crucial step to transform Egypt into a regional center for the fintech industry in the Arab World and Africa,” said Tarek Amer, governor of the Central Bank of Egypt.
Mohamed El-Etreby, chairman of Banque Misr, said his firm’s contribution to the fund was a reflection of its commitment to keeping up with the pace of global developments in fintech.
“This fund will achieve many gains for the Egyptian economy by supporting the country’s young fintech talent and creating the ideal environment for them to develop innovative solutions that will help deliver banking and financial services to all segments of society in a more efficient and affordable manner,” he said.
Basil Moftah, partner at Global Ventures, said he was delighted to have the support of its investors, and was thankful for their trust.
“Over the past few years, we have had the privilege of being part of the journey of many entrepreneurs across MEA, with a particular focus on the fintech sector and Egypt as a key priority market,” he said.
“Egypt’s huge unbanked, young population and cash-dominated economy offers strong opportunities for local and regional fintech and fintech-enabled companies who continue to witness exponential growth in the market. We look forward to partnering with all stakeholders in the ecosystem to continue to fuel this growth and transform Egypt into a regional centre of excellence for fintech innovation.”