Start-ups in the UAE and Saudi Arabia have dominated recent fundraising activity in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, which saw total investments rising to nearly $800 million in November this year.

Start-ups across the region raised a total of $764 million during the month, the highest this year, with Saudi Arabia accounting for $337.6 million and the UAE $284 million, according to a report by Wamda and Digital Digest on Tuesday.

The total value of investments, raised across 42 rounds last month, registered a 390% increase month on month and a 74% increase year on year.

After the UAE, Egypt raised the third-highest value of investments at $130 million, followed by Kuwait ($7 million), Morocco ($3 million), Oman $1.8 million and Tunisia ($100,000).

Of the 42 deals, 10 attracted direct global investment, with US-based investors making major contributions.

As for investors across the region, those based in the UAE came out the most active, participating in 21 deals, followed by those in Saudi Arabia, investing in 10 deals.

In terms of sectors, start-ups in fintech led the table for funding amount. It also ranked second in terms of the number of rounds in the sector, with nine deals. 

The SuperApp sector came second, propelled by Egyptian fintech MNT-Halan’s funding round that raised $130 million, while edtech came in a distant third with $41.4 million.
(Writing by Cleofe Maceda; editing by Seban Scaria)