Saudi Arabia’s high dependence on hydrocarbon revenues needs no introduction. However, in a quest to divorce from its traditional sources of income, the Kingdom is investing heavily in strategic sectors, including R&D, education, medicine and emerging technologies, while privatising many state owned assets, including Saudi Aramco.
To put Saudi Arabia’s diversification into context, the new economy will not only match the GDP contributions of the hydrocarbon economy, but will out perform it by 2030. Yet, in order to come to life, innovation needs capital.
Saudi Arabia’s PE/VC community is responsible for a surge in regional investment over recent years. A 25% share of the region’s corporate VCs are based in Saudi Arabia and, in 2014, the Kingdom claimed 21% of all reported PE investment in MENA.
By mid-2016, Saudi Arabia was the largest fund domicile in the GCC and the second largest in the MENA region, accounting for $26.2 billion of the $79.6 billion MENA fund market in a year when 244 transactions were disclosed – the highest number since 2008.
However, more capital is needed. The first test of the new economy is not to reduce the role of oil, but increase the role of the Private Equity and Venture Capital community in non-oil projects and enterprises. To do that requires a recalibration of the business landscape.
The National Transformation Programme outlines the necessity to develop and implement a private equity and venture capital programme and provides a framework to increase the direct investment volume through venture funds and the private equity of SMEs.
Further, projects such as the US$500 billion Neom, the world’s first, purpose built, independent economic zone announced by Crown Prince and Deputy Prime Minister, His Royal Highness Prince Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, provide the necessary physical infrastructure.
At Naseba, we support the transformation of ambition into action – and the role of PEVC investors is vital to this.
In March 2018, we will leverage our strong relationship with the Kingdom’s key stakeholders to host the fourth edition of the PEVC Summit Saudi Arabia – the Kingdom’s only strategic investment and market access platform, facilitating more than 450 private one-to-one business meetings.
On 21st March, 2018, as many as 150 MENA region PE and VC investors, investment heads of family offices, sovereign wealth funds and corporate venture capitalists, will gather to access more than 30 global investment opportunities, across fintech, blockchain, AI, enterprise software, RetailTech, Edutech, Healthtech and medical devices. Over the course of the platform, keynotes, panel discussions and elevator pitches, will be punctuated with eight hours of business networking.
Every stakeholder in the Kingdom has a role to play over the coming years – from sovereign wealth funds and traditional private equity and venture capital firms, to regional conglomerates and family-owned businesses. Each will be vital to supporting Saudi Arabia as it continues to pursue an economically stable future built on knowledge, innovation and vision.
Visit the website to find out more about the Naseba Private Equity and Venture Capital Summit in Saudi Arabia.
Alternatively, you can click here to submit your business case if you are looking to leverage the summit to meet strategic investors and partners.