Qatar’s Rasmal Ventures launches $100 million debut fund, hits $30 million as first close

Rasmal Ventures, a Doha-based VC firm has launched its debut $100 million fund, to invest in startups in Qatar, the Middle East & North Africa, and globally, it announced in a statement today. The fund, Rasmal Innovation Fund I, has hit over $30 million as its first close with different institutions, family offices, and high net-worth individuals (HNWIs) as its investors. It didn’t share the names of any investors though.

The fund which claims to be the first home-grown Qatari VC fund, is sector-agnostic but its areas of interest include supply chain logistics, climate-tech, fintech, B2B SaaS and AI. The Qatari investor will invest across seed to Series B stages.

“Our sweet spot is pre-series A and series A stage startups. We also invest selectively at seed and series B stages,” it notes on its website.

The founding team of Rasmal Ventures includes Alexander Wiedmer and Dr. Shaikha Al-Jabir as Partners, Angus Paterson as a Venture Partner, and Soumaya Ben Beya Dridje as a Junior Partner.

Alexander and Angus were previously with Iris Capital, the European fund manager that managed STC Ventures which was the first institutional investor in Careem and made over 100x return on their initial investment in the company. The two have combined experience of over 20 years in venture capital.

Dr. Shaikha Al-Jabir is the co-founder of Doha Tech Angels with investments in healthcare, fitness, edtech, and logistics startups. She previously held leadership roles in leading local telco Ooredoo and Kahramaa, the Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation.

Alexander Wiedmer, the Partner of Rasmal Ventures, said, “With the first closing behind us, we are now confidently looking ahead at great plans for value creation and growth of our Qatar-based, internationally-minded VC company and first fund. We have helped build the region’s most successful unicorn and many other companies. We will do it again with Rasmal Ventures. Qatar’s strategic location makes it the perfect springboard for the region.”

The launch of Rasmal Ventures follows the expansion of Singapore-based Golden Gate Ventures into Qatar. It also launched a $100 million fund last month, hitting $20 million in the first closing.

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