Amman: The Innovative Startups and SMEs Fund (ISSF) - the largest investment fund of its kind in Jordan - has invested USD 1 million in Arzan Venture Capital II; an investment fund headquartered in Kuwait. The investment, which was made in January 2021, emphasizes the commitment of the ISSF towards supporting youth-led startups and SMEs during their early stages.  

The investment in Arzan Venture Capital II - which in turn invests in tech startups across the Kingdom up to the Series A funding round - aims at advancing the Jordanian entrepreneurial ecosystem and empowering promising local female and male entrepreneurs. 

“We are very pleased with this notable investment, which will present several aspiring tech startups with the opportunity to grow their businesses, hence consequently generating new jobs and further strengthening Jordan’s standing as a regional hub for entrepreneurship and innovation. At the ISSF, we continuously strive to invest in prominent regional and global funds so as to provide Jordanian entrepreneurs with the funding, skills, tools and training they need, to ultimately grant them the confidence and aptitude to build their futures and create better lives for others,” commented ISSF CEO, Laith Al Qasem.

In turn, Arzan Venture Capital Partner, Laith Zraikat, stated, “Arzan Venture Capital is considered one of the most active funds in Jordan, investing in eight Jordanian companies, in addition to four others outside the Kingdom led by Jordanian entrepreneurs. Today, we plan on doubling down on the Jordanian ecosystem. As such, this ISSF investment has come at the perfect time, in line with the growing number of startups and entrepreneurial projects, the increased demand for establishing a digital economy and the need to create new job opportunities amidst the dynamic transformation the world at large and the region in specific are witnessing on various fronts.”

The ISSF is registered as a Jordanian private shareholding company. The objective of the ISSF is to support and elevate Jordan’s entrepreneurial and innovation landscape by facilitating the establishment of new investment funds that serve the ecosystem; making direct investments in innovative, export-oriented and scalable local startups; as well as implementing initiatives that improve the capabilities of Jordanian entrepreneurs and startup teams through training, capacity building and targeted incubation and acceleration programs.


About the Innovative Startups and SMEs Fund

The ISSF is a national project established in 2017 as a private shareholding company to actively promote a fundamental shift within the local entrepreneurial and innovation landscape. The ISSF - which is the largest investment fund of its kind in Jordan - is implemented in cooperation with the World Bank over a duration of six years, concluding in November 2023. During this period, the World Bank foresees the ISSF to make both direct and indirect investments (the latter in investment funds) in 150-200 local innovation companies and build the capacities of at least 825 entrepreneurs and SMEs through specialized training to qualify them for prospective investments. The total working capital of the ISSF is USD 98 million, with a USD 48 million investment from the Central Bank of Jordan and a USD 50 million investment from the World Bank. The ISSF is committed to facilitating funding for Jordanian early-stage startups and SMEs, particularly those demonstrating ambitious vision and high growth potential. The ISSF endeavors to foster a thriving and supportive entrepreneurial environment that enables promising local entrepreneurs to transform innovative projects into sustainable startups; generate jobs for Jordanian men and women; and prompt economic sectors that serve export markets by capitalizing on the creative and technical capabilities of entrepreneurs and management teams across Jordan.

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This press release has been distributed by Bidaya Marketing Communications on behalf of the Innovative Startups and SMEs Fund. 

For more information or assistance, please contact us at:
Tel:  +962 6 585 4002/6
Fax:  +962 6 585 3001
P.O. Box:  930391, Amman 11193, Jordan

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