Raiven Capital launches second venture capital fund in Dubai

Raiven Capital today announced the launch of a new venture capital fund with a target size of USD125 mn in Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), the leading global financial hub in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA) region. The fund will focus on founders developing tech in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT) and Distributed Ledger Tech, with a particular emphasis on digital platforms disrupting value chains in FinTech, cybersecurity and sustainability-focused sectors.  Investing in innovation in early and growth-stage tech companies in the GCC, South Asia, and North East Africa and enabling them to blossom into leaders by connecting them to markets and capital pools in Europe and North America, via Raiven’s new Dubai hub, is what we are most excited about, noted General Partner, Raiven Capital, Paul Dugsin.“The fund will serve the needs of the local startup ecosystem, enabling them to become regional and global competitors, while at the same time, Raiven’s existing community of startups and investors will now have access to all advantages of the Middle East and the broader region that arcs between East Africa to India for their own ventures.”Arif Amiri, Chief Executive Officer, DIFC Authority, said: “We welcome Raiven Capital to DIFC. Raiven’s focus on nurturing early and growth-stage AI, IoT and distributed ledger tech startups through the launch of this new venture capital fund shows strong confidence in Dubai’s economy, talent-base and future-forward entrepreneurial ecosystem. The firm’s presence in DIFC will not only benefit the local startup community in taking the future of tech to new heights, but also provide Raiven’s global network of founders and partners with access to a wealth of resources in the MEASA region and beyond.”General Partner, Raiven Capital, Supreet Manchanda noted the fervour around Dubai’s ecosystem and the opportunities it presents: “We are thrilled to be in a place growing exponentially. Founders are eager to contribute to global innovation. The government’s robust support for entrepreneurship is impressive, and unlike any other place at this time. We look forward to meeting the best and brightest in Dubai and DIFC in particular. There are great things ahead.”The Toronto-based fund is creating bridges between its home country and Dubai, an exciting development. “We are thrilled that Raiven Capital, a Canadian venture capital fund, is the first-of-its-kind to obtain a licence to operate its second fund in DIFC in Dubai. Raiven has ambitious plans for the region connecting Canada, the UAE and other high growth tech ecosystems. We look forward to working with them,” said Tracy Reynolds, Canada’s Consul General in Dubai.The tech industry in the UAE and regionally has recently seen substantial expansion. Yet, funding is falling behind the quick speed of change and technological adoption. This is drawing global technology businesses and international venture capitalists to the region. Raiven’s fund further accelerates growth of the venture ecosystem to meet the increasing demand for technology products and services.MENA venture capital funding in the third quarter of 2023 saw USD250 mn raised across 78 deals, a 32 per cent increase compared to the second quarter of 2023, according to MAGNiTT’s MENA Venture Investment Premium Report.

SoftBank Launches Major IoT Expansion in APAC With 1NCE Partnership

SoftBank Corp. has unveiled plans to launch a comprehensive expansion of its global IoT business in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region starting in October 2023. This expansion will encompass 19 countries and regions, including Japan. SoftBank's primary focus in this initiative will be the promotion of IoT services, particularly the "1NCE IoT Flat Rate" offered by German company 1NCE GmbH, targeting enterprise customers. The telecom giant aims to secure a total of 2 million 1NCE IoT Flat Rate connections across APAC and other regions by the end of the 2025 fiscal year, which concludes on March 31, 2026.As part of its "Beyond Carrier" growth strategy, SoftBank is diversifying beyond its core telecommunications business and is actively driving digital transformation (DX) in various industry sectors. Within the IoT domain, SoftBank made an equity investment in 1NCE GmbH in April 2022 and secured an exclusive agreement to market the 1NCE IoT Flat Rate in 19 APAC markets. The 1NCE IoT Flat Rate offers highly cost-effective global IoT connectivity, allowing customers to roam on 1NCE's extensive global network spanning over 160 countries and regions at no additional cost. This service has gained traction among enterprise customers, including Japanese companies like Pocketalk Corporation.While SoftBank initially focused on promoting the 1NCE IoT Flat Rate within Japan, it is now broadening its reach to include 19 countries and regions in APAC, intensifying its global IoT business efforts. The company will bolster its IoT salesforce by quadrupling its team, launch a dedicated online IoT shop in partnership with 1NCE, and enhance advertising and marketing campaigns across the region. In addition, SoftBank will leverage its IoT platform to propose solutions related to smart meters and work towards further expanding its global IoT business presence.SoftBank is committed to building a comprehensive support framework to address the challenges faced by various industries in different countries and regions. The expansion of its global IoT business, starting with the APAC region, aligns with SoftBank's broader "Beyond Japan" initiative aimed at expanding its global presence.Daichi Nozaki, Senior Vice President overseeing the global business at SoftBank Corp., expressed enthusiasm about the comprehensive expansion of the company's IoT business in the APAC region. Nozaki stated, "We’re extremely pleased to be able to fully expand our IoT business in the APAC region. While we’ve been providing IoT services primarily in Japan and contributing to the DX of various industries there, going forward we’ll collaborate with strong business partners like 1NCE and leverage our expertise gained in the Japan market to fully establish ourselves in APAC. Doing this, we’ll work to contribute to the digitalization of the entire region and solve social issues."

ABO Digital commits $10mln to IoT blockchain company Kalima

Dubai, UAE: Kalima, a delegated proof-of-stake (PoS) blockchain for IoT and data, has recently entered into a new agreement with ABO Digital, a private alternative funding investment group based in the Bahamas and Dubai. This significant partnership involves a commitment of US$10 million into the French-based blockchain company.Kalima is a rapidly growing ecosystem that allows enterprises, developers, and startups to build the future of Web3 Enterprise and Data Governance applications, particularly with IoT (Internet of Things) data, in order to solve real-world problems.It is a layer 1 third-generation blockchain, which enables users to independently govern, manage, and monetize data, build decentralized applications (dApps), and create tokens for smart-rewarding systems by leveraging Kalima's decentralized network of permissioned blockchains (PrivaChains).‘’This funding commitment from ABO Digital marks a significant milestone for Kalima Blockchain, which plans on using the funds to further innovate and refine our IoT solutions, which have the potential to revolutionize industries and drive digital transformation. This commitment from ABO Digital will enable Kalima to enhance our IoT blockchain solution for industrial companies and developers, which is ready to be deployed at a global scale, and bolster strategic partnerships within the IoT and Blockchain ecosystem,” said Kalima Blockchain Chief Executive Officer, André Legendre."We are delighted to collaborate with the Kalima team going forward," said Amine Nedjai, CEO of ABO Digital. "Kalima's innovative approach and expertise in Web3 Enterprise and Data Governance applications align perfectly with our commitment to driving technological advancements in enterprise blockchain solutions. This partnership enables us to leverage alternative funding avenues and support the growth of Kalima's groundbreaking initiatives."