- The latest funding round makes COFE App one of the leading coffee marketplace in the USD 44 Billion MENA Market
- eWTP Arabia Capital (“eWTPA”) is an investment platform and a growth stage venture fund, anchored by the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia, Public Investment Fund (PIF) and eWTP Capital.
- Last year, the company announced a partnership with the Saudi Coffee Company (SCC), a PIF-backed initiative with a mandate to invest SAR 1.2 billion (USD 319 million) in the national coffee sector by 2030.
COFE, MENA’s premiere online coffee marketplace has announced the successful completion of its Series B funding round, raising USD 15 million in investment capital. Coming onboard as the lead investor is WAED Ventures, the USD 500 million Saudi-focused VC Capital Fund wholly owned by Aramco.
The Series B round also brings onboard eWTP Arabia Capital, who have received significant funding support from the Public Investment Fund (PIF) and the Electronic World Trading Platform (eWTP) Capital initiated by Alibaba Group in the Middle East Region. eWTP Arabia Capital was founded by Jerry Li, who is a 20+ year veteran of China’s internet and digital industries. Li brings a deep understanding of China’s technology ecosystems and a broad network of Chinese top entrepreneurs. Additionally, Al Imtiaz Investment Group, COFE’s largest investor by contribution, and KISP Ventures (KFH Capital), and Rasameel Investment Company, a Kuwait-based wealth management fund have participated in the round, reaffirming their confidence in COFE’s growth potential.
On the occasion of COFE accomplishing a major milestone in its journey, Founder & CEO, Ali Al Ebrahim said, “COFE’s story has been one of resilience. We have had some great opportunities, but not without its challenges that have needed innovative maneuvering. However, we have persevered in our ambition to create a fertile breeding ground for the growth of the entire coffee ecosystem, especially in the region. At COFE, we have always sought to grow all our partners, investors, and the industry with us. I would like to take this opportunity to thank our investors for continuing to trust in us, and the team for always putting their best foot forward. None of this would have been possible without the hardwork and trust of everyone that has continued to take this journey with us, especially our users.”
Leading innovation in the regional coffee industry, COFE has been transforming the way users reach their daily dose of caffeine. Since its inception in 2018, the platform has become an integral player in the USD 44 billion MENA coffee market. Furthermore, the Global Coffee Market is also forecasted to expand at a CAGR of 7.5% between 2022-2027. The funds raised by COFE in its Series B round will focus on the brand’s e-commerce offering, furthering the company’s ambition to become a complete coffee solution provider. With strides made towards strengthening its position in the regional market, COFE is ready to expand internationally in the near future.
Having entered the Saudi market in 2020, COFE has seen wide-spread acceptance from users in the Kingdom and was listed as one of the Top 10 Most Downloaded Food Delivery and Restaurant Apps (2021) in the kingdom in a survey conducted by the Communication & Information Technology Commission (CITC) of Saudi Arabia. Most recently, the brand has also announced its partnership with the Saudi Coffee Company (SCC), established by the PIF company with a mandate to develop the Saudi coffee industry, investing SAR 1.2 billion (USD 319 million) in the national coffee sector over the next 10 years. This focus on the coffee industry in the Kingdom has attracted the interest of Saudi based investors, including WAED Ventures, the lead investor in the Series B round.
Commenting on the investment, Fahad Alidi, Managing Director at Wa’ed Ventures said: "our mission is to advance sustainable innovation within emerging tech segments in the Kingdom. The founding team at COFE app, supported by its cutting-edge platform, will disrupt a multi-billion-dollar market fueled by a nation-wide initiative supporting its growth for years to come. We look forward to backing COFE’s growth as it continues to lead the digitalization of farm-to-cup consumerism across the region.”
Commenting on their investment in COFE App, Jerry Li, Founder and Managing Partner of eWTP Arabia Capital, said: “We partner with like-minded entrepreneurs and support the growth of promising businesses in the GCC region. We believe our investment, combined with strategic assistance, will provide COFE with resources to scale and grow. Our investment is a testament to our commitment to promote innovation in the region. We are excited about COFE’s vision in digitizing the coffee industry, which would be a multi-billion market with enormous untapped potentials.”
Al-Imtiaz Investment Group, a leading investment group based in Kuwait and listed on the Boursa Kuwait (formerly the Kuwait Stock Exchange), is COFE’s largest investor by contribution. Having invested USD 10 million in the previous round and committed to further support the company, Al-Imtiaz invested USD 1 million in this Series B round, taking its total investment in COFE to USD 11 million. Commenting on its participation in the current round, Al Imtiaz Investment Group Executive Vice President, Saad Al-Bader said, “The leadership and team of COFE have worked diligently over the years to achieve key milestones that have had clear contributions in propelling the regional coffee industry. We believe that COFE is ready to scale internationally into new markets and to further strengthen its market position and service offerings.”
It is no surprise that investments in the coffee market have been on the rise worldwide, given the industry's untapped potential. Recent prime examples include Peet’s Coffee IPO that raised €2.3bn through IPO at the height of the pandemic. Coca-Cola’s 2019 USD 5.1 billion acquisition of the British coffee chain Costa Coffee, giving Coca-Cola a significant market share in the coffee industry, as well as Starbucks and Nestle’s USD 7.15 billion deal for ready-to-drink coffee in 2018. The Global Coffee Market is anticipated to reach USD 652.31 Billion by 2027, creating a significant window of opportunity for the upcoming future for a coffee-centric business like COFE App.
COFE is the region’s #1 app for everything coffee! The platform makes coffee ordering fast and efficient and provides users an access to a wide range of international franchises and local coffee brands through multiple premium services. COFE Market, the platform’s ecommerce offering also allows users to purchase coffee beans, machines and other home brewing accessories, creating a lasting impact on the entire coffee industry B2B supply chain ecosystem.
Founded by Ali Al-Ebrahim in November 2018, COFE App currently operates in Kuwait, KSA, UAE, and Egypt, with international expansion in the pipeline. The platform has grown from strength to strength since its official launch. It was listed by CITC KSA as one of the top 10 most downloaded applications in 2020, and was also the official main partner of Riyadh Season 2022. Most recently the brand announced its strategic partnership with Saudi Coffee Company to support the development of the Saudi coffee sector.
COFE App is available on App Store and Google Play store.
About Wa’ed Ventures
Wa’ed Ventures is a $500 million institutional venture capital firm wholly owned by Saudi Aramco to promote economic diversification and new business growth in the Kingdom by investing in high-growth tech startups across multiple sectors. Established in 2013, Wa'ed Ventures manages a portfolio of 50+ startups, providing end-to-end support to startups from funding to providing access to partner resources. The company is located in the city of Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. For more information, please visit: www.waed.net
eWTP Arabia Capital is an investment platform and a growth stage venture fund, anchored by the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia, PIF, and eWTP Capital. Founded in 2019, eWTP Arabia has so far successfully invested in 18 companies and will continue to support tech-driven businesses across Asia and the Middle East.
About Al Imtiaz:
Al Imtiaz Investment Group (K.S.C.P) is a leading Kuwaiti Sharia’a compliant investment group established in 2005 and was listed on Bourse Kuwait in 2011. It has paid up capital of KD 113 million and a diversified portfolio of assets that span across different markets globally with a focus on the GCC and wider MENA region. The Group is regulated by the Capital Markets Authority, and the Ministry of Commerce & Industry.