Riyadh: The Saudi Venture Capital (SVC) announced the doubling of its investment in the global specialty lending fund managed by Partners for Growth (PFG), one of the international and experienced fund managers providing venture and growth stage debt instruments to startups and SMEs. This brings the total investment by SVC in the fund to $32 million.

Last year, SVC announced its investment in the venture debt fund managed by PFG as the first venture debt fund in which SVC invests, following the launch of the “Investment in Venture and Private Debt Funds” product. The fund will continue to focus on offering venture debt instruments to high-growth startups and SMEs in several sectors.

The subscription agreement was signed by the CEO and Board Member at SVC, Dr. Nabeel Koshak, and the Managing Director and Head of Europe, Middle East and Africa at PFG, Armineh Baghoomian. The signing ceremony was attended by the Acting CEO of the SME Bank, Abdulrahman Mansour.

Dr. Koshak commented: “Doubling SVC’s investment in the venture debt fund by PFG comes as a result of the increasing demand for venture debt by Saudi startups, and to implement SVC's strategy related to the launch of the “Investment in Venture Debt Funds” product to fill financing gaps in the VC ecosystem. This is also driven by the recent support from the SME Bank to increase the investment capital of SVC, leading to a total investment capital of $1.5 billion.”

Armineh Baghoomian noted: “Amidst a thriving landscape of innovation, venture capital activity has surged in Saudi Arabia and across the region. However, debt remains harder for venture and growth stage companies to access. We are pleased to expand capital availability through the introduction of custom debt financing and look forward to continuing to support the dynamic entrepreneurial ecosystem.”

SVC is a government investment company established in 2018 and is a subsidiary of the SME Bank, one of the development banks affiliated to the National Development Fund.

SVC aims to stimulate and sustain financing for startups and SMEs from pre-Seed to pre-IPO by investing $1.6 million through investment in funds and co-investment in startups. SVC invested in 38 funds that have invested in 674 companies through 1,257 deals.