COTU Ventures Establishes USD54 Million Fund to Back Early-Stage Startups

COTU Ventures Establishes USD54 Million Fund to Back Early-Stage Startups

– Dubai-based COTU Ventures secures $54 million for its inaugural fund, aimed at supporting startups across the Middle East from pre-seed to seed stages.

– The firm, led by founder and general partner Amir Farha, actively invests between $500,000 and $2 million in early-stage startups, with a focus on sectors like fintech and B2B software.

– COTU Ventures emphasizes comprehensive support beyond funding, fostering candid conversations with founders to provide strategic guidance and facilitate introductions to key stakeholders.

Dubai-based COTU Ventures has announced the successful raise of $54 million for its debut fund aimed at bolstering startups across the Middle East, spanning from pre-seed to seed stages. 

With its final closing achieved last year, COTU Ventures, known for its backing of founders from inception to post-product launch, typically invests between $500,000 and $2 million, with a provision for follow-on investments.

Over the past two and a half years, COTU Ventures has been actively channeling capital into startups across the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council), with a primary focus on the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Pakistan. The firm has already supported over 20 early-stage startups across various sectors, as outlined in its statement.

Founder and general partner Amir Farha disclosed in an interview with TechCrunch that while COTU Ventures leans slightly towards fintech and B2B software, it remains receptive to opportunities across diverse sectors. 

Among its notable investments are Huspy, a UAE mortgage platform supported by Peak XV and Founders Fund, and Egyptian fintech startup MoneyHash.

Farha underscored the emerging opportunities in the B2B software realm, emphasizing the potential for technology to address business challenges and capitalize on margin efficiencies in high-margin industries.

Reflecting on his journey, Farha highlighted his previous involvement with Careem, a prominent startup in the MENA and GCC regions, as one of his earliest investments during his tenure at BECO Capital. 

Following his departure from BECO Capital in 2020, Farha launched COTU Ventures, doubling down on early-stage investments to bridge the market gap for comprehensive support beyond funding at the nascent stages of startup development.

Farha emphasized the significance of candid discussions with founders, delving into their personal and professional backgrounds to foster trust and establish strong connections. 

COTU Ventures is committed to providing strategic guidance and facilitating introductions to key stakeholders to support its portfolio companies as they navigate subsequent funding rounds.

COTU Ventures’ limited partners include Lunate, Mubadala, Dubai Future District Fund, Arab Bank, Bupa KSA, and GPs from prominent VCs such as Foundry Group, Tribe Capital, and Stride, along with several family offices.

Sharif El-Badawi, CEO of Dubai Future District Fund, commended COTU Ventures’ exceptional leadership and track record, expressing confidence in Amir Farha’s ability to identify remarkable investment opportunities and support founders effectively.

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