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Flat6Labs launches $20m seed fund in Jordan

By JT - Jun 17,2021 - Last updated at Jun 17,2021

AMMAN — Flat6Labs, MENA’s leading seed investor and the largest manager of startup programmes in the region, has announced the launch of a new $20 million seed fund in Jordan.

Created to nurture the growth and development of early-stage companies, the Jordan Seed Fund (JSF) has achieved a first close of $7.4 million and attracted contributions from prominent investors such as the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Innovative Startups and SMEs Fund (ISSF), Beyond Capital, Bank Al Etihad, and GMS Ventures & Investments, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported citing a Flat6Labs statement.

Applications for the programme’s first four-month cycle are now open. Participating companies will have the opportunity to benefit from a cash seed investment of up to JD50,000 each, together with potential follow-on funding of up to JD 120,000, the statement said.

In addition to attractive funding opportunities, startups will benefit from the Flat6Labs Amman seed programme. The programme will run over a five-year period and is set to deliver a host of benefits to between 12 and 16 startups every year, including office space, world-class mentorship and access to Flat6Labs’ regional network.

The programme is specifically targeted at startups in innovation-based and knowledge-driven sectors such as Information and Communication Technologies, Software Solutions, Education, Healthcare, Digital Content and Games, Hardware, Electronics, Manufacturing Solutions, Renewable Energy, Agricultural Solutions, Big Data and Analytics, FinTech and Payments, Media, and Entertainment. 

Each of the selected startups will receive tailored support designed to help them scale and grow their businesses, with the long-term goal of creating regional, and ultimately global, champions.

Participating companies will also benefit from opportunities for regional exposure and mentorship through Flat6Labs’ extensive international network, together with coaching from established business leaders.

Each startup will be paired with at least three highly experienced mentors. In addition, Flat6Labs Amman will arrange Demo Days, support fundraising and business build-out, and deliver a full spectrum of support designed to help new businesses flourish.

Ramez El Serafy, Flat6Labs CEO, commented: “We are delighted to expand our presence into Jordan with the launch of an early-stage fund and seed programme, which creates exciting opportunities for local startups. As the region’s leading seed and early-stage venture capital firm, Flat6Labs is well placed to support the aspirations of the Kingdom’s talented entrepreneurs and help them take their businesses to the next level. We aim to support the growth and development of Jordan’s start-up ecosystem, and thus contribute to a thriving national economy.”

Rasha Manna, general manager of Flat6Labs Jordan, said: “Jordan is home to a pool of talented entrepreneurs who are ready to showcase their ideas to the world. We provide foundational support to startups through funding, mentorship and networking opportunities across the region and beyond. We are excited to now open applications for our first cycle and look forward to starting work with Jordan’s most promising startups in the very near future to help them effectively scale and grow their business.” 

Laith Al Qassem, CEO at ISSF, said:  “ISSF has been mandated to improve the Jordanian entrepreneurial ecosystem through acting as a fund of funds and through facilitating the creation of new funds to serve the investment needs of entrepreneurs and start-ups along their journey towards success. Flat6Labs fills an important gap and role by providing studied equity capital starting from seed stage accompanied by competent hands-on incubation and mentoring which will facilitate speedier and more focused growth in the investments they make.” 

Abdullah Jefri, IFC’s country manager for the Levant, said: “Jordan is an attractive market for entrepreneurship and early-stage capital given its young and increasingly urban population, high rates of technology adoption, and increasing government support. Addressing the funding gaps will help build a robust startup ecosystem to tap into this potential and spur innovation and economic growth in Jordan and the region.”

Launched in 2011, Flat6Labs has grown to become the MENA region’s leading startup accelerator managing seed funds with a total AUM of more than $85 million, according to the statement.

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