The Abraaj Group has lead a consortium investing $60 million in MENA-founded Careem, which operates its app-based car service in 20 cities from Morocco to Pakistan. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The firm will use the capital to fund its expansion plans in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.
Careem, which counts former McKinsey consultants, Magnus Olsson and Mudassir Sheikha among its founders, is planning to hire additional employees to help accelerate the rate at which it enters new markets and ramp up new product and service development. In the last three years, the company has witnessed strong growth month on month of over 30% across its core markets of the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt. It aims to become the biggest consumer logistics business in the region.
Commenting on the investment, Mustafa Abdel-Wadood, a Partner at The Abraaj Group, said, “The transport industry is witnessing a positive disruptive revolution from the use of technology. The headroom for growth in the ride-share and taxi-app industry continues to be substantial and is proving out globally – and with our markets being no exception. We strongly believe that the combination of Careem and its management team with Abraaj’s track record of supporting regional champions will drive scale, efficiency, and produce significant public policy benefits. We intend to equip this business fully to rise to the challenge – and take leadership of this segment”.
Through the deal, Abraaj joins a roster of investors that includes Al Tayyar, STC Ventures, Beco Capital, Impulse, Lumia Capital and Wamda Capital. Al Tayyar remains Careem’s largest institutional investor.