domestic growth in 2024 and beyond — Preqin reports

Saudi Arabia’s domestic deal count grew sixfold between 2018-2023

LONDON, March  04, 2024  (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Preqin, the global leader in alternatives data and insights, has published The Rise of Private Capital in Saudi Arabia: Preqin Territory Guide report.

The report finds two key themes are driving the future of Saudi Arabia’s position in the private capital landscape: The first theme is Saudi Arabia’s government, investors, and corporates are fostering partnerships with fund managers to bring further knowledge, infrastructure development, and co-investment to the country. From fund managers’ perspectives, Saudi Arabia is now more than just a location for raising investor capital. The second theme is Saudi Arabian appetite for domestic investment through private markets, which continues to swell as home-grown entrepreneurialism, and so investment opportunities, burgeon.

New role for private capital and fund managers in Saudi Arabia

The government-led Saudi Vision 2030 project is fulfilling its purpose of increasing economic, social and cultural diversification as Saudi Arabia moves beyond its ‘peak-oil’ era. A key element of this transition is the private markets.

For over 30 years, Saudi Arabia has proved one of the world’s most reliable destinations for raising private capital. But in 2024, Saudi Arabia will elevate this historic relationship with fund managers through stronger collaboration with them, focusing on deploying capital domestically to advance economic projects. In turn, it is fulfilling its Saudi Vision 2030 ambitions.

Fund managers have recognized their opportunity to capitalize on Saudi Arabia’s growth trajectory in recent years. Between 2018 and January 2024, Preqin data shows that the number of Saudia Arabia-based fund managers increased by 213%, or from 47 to 147.

Appetite for domestic investment: Private equity and venture capital deals
David Dawkins, lead author of the report, at Preqin, says:

“In 2024, Saudi Arabia is increasingly looking to use private capital to support the country’s burgeoning entrepreneurial class in preparation for life after oil. To help build domestic businesses and create jobs for its young population, investors in the region are seeking to collaborate with fund managers on knowledge transfer, infrastructure development, and co-investment.”

By the end of 2023, the gap almost entirely closed between the number of private equity and venture capital deals that Saudi Arabian investors completed at home, compared to those overseas. 118 were completed in Saudi Arabia and 119 completed abroad, in 2023. In comparison, Saudi Arabia completed 100 private equity and venture capital deals domestically and 151 abroad, in 2022.

Saudi Arabia proved a sunny spot during the venture capital ‘winter’ of 2020 to 2023, where deal making slowed globally. Venture capital aggregate deal value in Saudi Arabia reached $1.02bn in 2023, rising from $794mn in 2022.

Additional key findings of The Rise of Private Capital in Saudi Arabia Preqin Territory Guide include:

Venture capital co-investment: There were 47 venture capital deals between non-Saudi Arabian fund managers and Saudi Arabian investors from 2018 to 2023. Almost three quarters, or 34, of the 47 deals were made between 2021 and 2023, highlighting the momentum of this trend going into 2024 and beyond.

Notable venture capital deals: Tamara, a banking, payments, and shopping platform, became the Kingdom’s first fintech unicorn after securing $340mn in a Series C equity funding round in December 2023.

Number of Saudi Arabia-focused private capital managers: By the end of 2021, there were 131 active managers focused on capital deployment in Saudi Arabia. By January 2024, there were 276, representing a 111% increase over the period.

If you would like more information or would like to speak with the report author, please contact Dawn Bowles at dawn.bowles@preqin.com.

About Preqin
Preqin, the Home of Alternatives™, empowers financial professionals who invest in or allocate to alternatives with essential data and insight to make confident decisions. It supports them throughout the entire investment lifecycle with critical information and leading analytics solutions. The company has pioneered rigorous methods of collecting private data for 20 years, enabling more than 200,000 professionals globally to streamline how they raise capital, source deals and investments, understand performance, and stay informed. For more information visit www.preqin.com.

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