Egypt

Cairo

MEMBERS:
Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA)

As we progress in building ‘Egypt’, we are determined to build it in a way where the startup ecosystem is a strong partner. The government is committed to back entrepreneurs throughout their journey from idea to growth.

H.E. Dr. Amr Talaat
Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Egypt
#1 MENA Ecosystem: Affordable Talent
#3 MENA Ecosystem: Funding
Top 15 Global Ecosystem: Affordable Talent

Highlights

Home to a young, vibrant population, Egypt has been leading the innovation scene across MENA region with tech-powered solutions. Despite the pandemic, $190 million flowed into Egyptian startups in 2020, a 30% YoY surge, with 32% of investments coming from international firms. In addition, a number of VCs were attracted to establish presence in Egypt such as US-based VC, Openner, and UAE-based Global Ventures. Egyptian startups’ efforts are paying off. SWVL, a bus ride-sharing startup founded in Egypt, becomes the first startup to go public outside of Egypt, listing in the US Stock Market, NASDAQ, at a $1.5 billion valuation. This makes it the largest African unicorn debut on any US-listed exchange, surpassing Jumia’s debut of $1.1B on the NYSE. Other impressive exits include Japan’s Trend Micro acquisition of cybersecurity company SecureMisr, through its Cysiv subsidiary; California-based Bevy’s acquisition of event management software startup, Eventtus; Oman’s eMushrif acquisition of Edtech startup,Tareeqi; and Miami-based Aleph Holding acquisition of 86% of the digital media startup, Connect Ads. In Healthtech, Ibnsina Pharma, the second-largest pharmaceutical distributor in Egypt, acquired a 75% stake in the online pharmacy, 3elagi, and e-health startup, Vezeeta, raised a $40M Series D funding round. Government and private sector initiatives and associated regulatory reforms are propelling the ecosystem growth. In 2020, Egypt released a law to support projects and enterprises that have been operating for less than 7 years by providing tax, customs, and non-tax incentives. In addition, the law provides monetary incentives for corporations, investment funds, incubators, accelerators and all entities supporting startups and SMEs.



Ecosystem by the numbers

TOTAL EARLY STAGE FUNDING
$148 m
GLOBAL AVG.
$431 m
ECOSYSTEM VALUE
$1.5 bn
GLOBAL AVG.
$10.5 bn
MEDIAN SEED ROUND
$75 k
GLOBAL AVG.
$494 k
MEDIAN SERIES A ROUND
$1 m
GLOBAL AVG.
$2.7 m
SOFT. ENGINEER SALARY
$7 k
GLOBAL AVG.
$42.1 k

Sub-sector Strengths

Fintech

Thanks to the government’s deregulation and drive for financial inclusion and universal mobile penetration (98.6%), investors are pouring money into Cairo’s Fintech startups. Digital financial solutions addressing SMEs, Tribal Credit, raised $34.3M in a Series A round and Paymob, the payment solutions startup, raised $18.5M in Series A. Telda, a 1-month old then digital banking service, raised a $5M pre-seed round led by Sequoia Capital. This is the first venture for Sequoia Capital in MENA.

Logistics & Transportation

With Egypt set on embracing digital transformation, startups are working on transportation tech solutions to accommodate cities growth. In addition to SWVL’s impressive Nasdaq IPO, Egypt’s Trella raised $42M Series A led by Maersk. Halan delivery super app raised $15M in a Series A round and Bosta courier service closed a USD $6.7M Series A round. Y Combinator alumnus, Flextock, an e-commerce fulfillment startup, raised $3.25M, as one of the largest pre-seed rounds in MENA.

Reasons to move your startup to Cairo

Large Customer Market

With a young population of 20 million tech savvy consumers, Cairo provides a perfect testbed for innovation and an attractive market for scalability, like expansions of Amazon’s Souq and Uber’s Careem.

Abundant Resources

Entrepreneurs can draw talent from over 170 universities and institutes producing 500K annual graduates, access a network of over 40 incubators/accelerators and 80 co-working spaces, and tap on ITIDA’s support to entrepreneurs.

COVID-19 Policy

Egypt is supporting businesses through tax exemptions, additional social spending and business support policies such as tax and loan payment deferrals. In the tech sector, ITIDA expedited its export rebate payouts. Its center, TIEC, organized the largest local hackathon in partnership with MNCs. Local VCs/angels announced multi-million dollar support funds.

Startup Community

Startup Genome
Members

Startup Genome
Partners

500 Startups
A15
AUC Venture Lab
Algebra Ventures
EdVentures
Endure
FEPS Business Incubator
Falak Startups
Flat6 Labs Cairo
HIM angel
Ideavelopers
Innoventures
Kamelezer
Sawari Ventures
Seedstars
Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center (TIEC)
The Cairo Angels

Get connected

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