Glamera secures US$1.3m seed fund to expand geographically

EGYPT –  Egypt’s SaaS startup, Glamera, has secured US$1.3 million in a seed fund round led by Riyadh Angels Investors (RAI), with participation from Techstars Accelerator, Ithraa Venture Capital, 100 Ventures, Silicon Valley Venture “Lucrative Ventures”, and Super Angel Investors.

The All-In-One platform provides B2B services to beauty and lifestyle services providers such as beauty salons, barber shops, gyms, spas, and makeup artists.

It also provides a B2B2C marketplace where consumers find such providers and book sessions with them.

Founded in 2020 by Mohamed Hassan and Omar Fathy, Glamera grew to cover Riyadh, Jeddah, Dammam, Taif, Qassim, Madina and Tabuk in Saudi Arabia as well as Cairo and Alexandria in Egypt.

To date, it facilitated a gross merchandise value of US$45 million and achieved continuous growth in revenue and client acquisition.

“We have successfully validated the market need and now we can confidently work towards leading the market with our fully integrated solutions and play part in the Saudi digital transformation vision 2030. We aim to work with 2500+ clients and achieve $500M GMV by the end of 2023,” said Mohamed Hassan, Founder and CEO.

“The fund will be used to continue developing and launching the planned new services and expand to more gulf markets,” added Omar Fathy, Founder and CTO.

Tourism-focused venture studio Purple Elephant Ventures closes US$1m pre-seed round

KENYA – The Nairobi-based Purple Elephant Ventures (PEV), a tourism-focused venture studio, has closed a pre-seed round of US$1 million to help it launch startups that will drive Africa’s tourism sector towards a greener future.

Founded by CEO Ben Peterson, previously senior partner at AHL Venture Partners; Jan Van der de Willebois, a former investment banker at Dyer & Blair; and serial entrepreneur Mikul Shah, founder of EatOut Africa, PEV aims to launch three or four startups each year.

Investors in PEV’s US$1 million pre-seed round include Klister Credit Corp, a Canadian investment firm and early backer of Shopify; Fede Pirzio-Biroli, founder of Playfair Capital; Ian McCaig, former CEO of and M-Kopa board member; Anthony Rock, president of Rock Impact Capital; The Untours Foundation; Rich Hoops, executive Director at Impact Capital; Jim Villanueava, managing director of Global Partnerships Social Venture Fund; and Helena Riese Harstad, co-founder and chair of the Optimizer Foundation.

Tunisia’s Sghartoon raises US$150K to boost its market

TUNISIA – Tunisian-based startup Sghartoon, has announced that it has successfully raised US$150,000 from the Oman Investment Fund.

The company’s founder, Hidayet Ayadi, stated that this activity is part of a bigger funding round with a total value of US$500,000 that would be completed by February of next year.

Ayadi emphasised that her firm would be able to boost its marketing and sales efforts in the Saudi Arabian market as a result of this investment.

Ayadi is currently participating in the Gitex 2022 trade exhibition in Dubai. The latter will be one of the startup’s primary markets beginning in the following year. In addition to Saudi Arabia, Sghartoon plans to expand its presence in the market of the United Arab Emirates.

Ayadi stated, with regards to the startup’s future ambitions, that Sghartoon hopes to alter its business model by changing its attention to major corporations. As part of this new strategy, which is expected to be finished by the end of the year, the company will concentrate on promoting its applications to businesses, who will then make them available to their employees.

BNPL startup for motorcycle taxi riders UKL secures US$623K

KENYA Unchorlight Kenya Limited (UKL) has secured 90 million yen (US$623,000) from Honda Trading and Skylight Consulting.

Honda Trading is a trading company under one of Japan’s major automobile/motorcycle manufacturers while Skylight Consulting is a consulting firm affiliated with Tokyo-based IT outsourcing giant Transcosmos.

Unchorlight Kenya Limited (UKL) is offering a BNPL (Buy Now, Pay Later) service called Zaribee, exclusively for “boda boda” motorcycle taxi riders in the Eastern African country.

UKL is a local subsidiary in Kenya of a joint venture established in 2021 by Skylight Consulting and Africa-focused seed-stage VC Uncovered Fund.

Since its launched back in September of 2021, UKL has sold motorcycles to more than 250 in the first nine months. The company also sells insurance to riders, introduces mobility service jobs including motorbike taxi as well as conducts educational activities on safe driving.

Liked this article? Subscribe to DealStreet Africa News, our regular email newsletter with the latest news, deals, and insights from Africa’s businesseconomy, and more. SUBSCRIBE HERE