Three Islamic fintech start-ups have won financial grants from Saudi Aramco Entrepreneurship Center (Wa’ed) as part of the Fintech Accelerator Program, an initiative by Saudi regulators.
The three are: Afundy, a revenue-based Shariah compliant financing providers, enabling online merchants to raise capital without interest or equity; Takharoj, a digital platform enabling companies engage with existing shareholders and prospective investors to trade in their shares; and Thrift Plan, which helps companies establish digital workplace saving plans to enhance social security.
They each received a grant of SAR50,000 (US$13,314.8) along with an opportunity to enroll in Wa’ed’s business incubation program.
Afund, Takharoj and Thrift Plan are three from the 12 fintech companies selected to join the Fintech Accelerator Program by Fintech Saudi, a initiative which began in 2018 by the Saudi Central Bank (SAMA) in collaboration with the Capital Market Authority (CMA). This year’s cohort include: Beehive Fintech, Finamze, Wealthface, Holo Mortgage Consultant, Erad, Nugttah, Sindbab.Tech, Xpence and ZidPay. They form the second cohort of the program; the first program took place in 2021.
“This year, the Saudi fintech industry has witnessed the largest number of venture capital investment deals. This is in line with the Saudi Vision 2030 that aims for the Kingdom to develop a leading financial sector that keeps pace with the rapid technological revolution. By building regulatory frameworks that attract innovative business models and using emerging technologies that have the potential to advance the provision of financial products and services, we can take the financial services industry to new heights, stimulate investment, promote economic development and empower entrepreneurs,” commented Mohammed Elkuwaiz, the chairman of CMA.