Venture capital firm Sawari Ventures launched its first fund, Sawari Ventures I, and has made initial investments in two companies: Alzwad Mobile Services and Vimov.
The fund, seeded by the partners and sponsored by Orascom Telecom’s Executive Chairman Naguib Sawiris, focuses on early and growth stage technology companies, the firm said in a statement.
“The Middle East is poised to become the next global center of entrepreneurship,” said Ahmed El Alfi, founder and chairman of Sawari Ventures. “Local entrepreneurs possess world-class talent, but need access to capital, mentorship and expanded networks to realize their full potential.”
Cairo-based Alzwad provides a multi-platform infotainment and communications ondevice portal for feature phone users across the Middle East. While, Vimov is the developer behind top-selling applications for the iPhone/iPad, including the number-one paid weather iPad app in the world, Weather HD.
Hany Al-Sonbaty, managing partner and co-founder of Sawari Ventures, noted, “Vimov and Alzwad are game-changing companies that exemplify the MENA opportunity.”
Sawari recently launched the Flat6 entrepreneurship lab at the American University in Cairo.
“Entrepreneurship, innovation and education are critical to the region’s future,” said Sawiris, “I am confident that my association with Sawari Ventures is a step towards building a dynamic entrepreneurial ecosystem.”