Egypt’s Swvl raises $8m in record funding round

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Egyptian ridesharing startup Swvl has secured a US$8 million Series A funding round to allow it to expand, the largest investment ever raised by an Egyptian tech startup.

Disrupt Africa reported in May of last year on the launch of Swvl, a mass-transit system that enables riders heading in the same direction to share a ride in a van or bus.

The startup, which raised US$500,000 from Dubai-based ride-hailing service Careem last July, has now secured a record-breaking funding round for an Egyptian tech startup, raising US$8 million in a round led by regional venture fund BECO Capital.

DiGAME, Silicon Badia. Raed Ventures, Arzan VC, Oman Technology Fund, and chairman of EDventure Holdings Esther Dyson also participated in the round.

“With this funding, Swvl aims to solidify its position in Egypt and establish the company as a global leader in the affordable smart mobility space, offering fixed routes for a fixed flat fare at prices that are up to 80 per cent cheaper than on-demand ride-hailing services,” Moustafa Kandil, co-founder and chief executive officer (CEO) of Swvl, said.

“We’re trying to build our own version of public transportation, that’s smarter basically.”

Swvl intends to invest EGP300 million (US$17 million) in the local market over the next three years to empower as many micro-entrepreneurs as possible, and also plans to expand beyond Egypt to other emerging markets across the Middle East, Southeast Asia and Africa during this year.

Esther Dyson will be joining Swvl’s board of directors, on behalf of DiGAME, along with BECO Capital CEO and co-founder Dany Farha.

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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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