Middle East VC firm MEVP invests in online travel site Wego

The investment was made in exchange for an equity ownership in Wego



Dubai-based startup Wego has received investment from MENA venture capital firm MEVP in exchange for an equity ownership, it announced on Sunday.

The investment amount and the size of the stake were not disclosed.

MEVP is investing in Wego as part of the company’s latest equity round alongside MBC Group (Middle East Broadcasting Centre), which announced a $12m investment and strategic partnership with the online travel search site in July.

Read more: Dubai’s MBC Group invests $12m in travel site Wego

The latest investment will be used to expand Wego’s regional footprint, a statement said.

Dubai-based investment bank Arqaam Capital helped facilitate the transaction.

Wego was founded in Singapore in 2005 but is now dual-headquartered in Dubai and Singapore.

In the MENA region, the travel comparison service has 10 million monthly visits and collaborates with over 700 airlines, hotels and online travel agents.

The startup’s existing investors include Tiger Global Management, Crescent Point Group and Square Peg Capital.

Walid Hanna, MEVP founder and CEO, said: “Online travel in MENA is a large vertical and continues to grow rapidly aided by a shift in consumer behaviour from offline to online.

“Wego is capitalising on such favourable market dynamics… and we believe it is well positioned to dominate the travel metasearch play in MENA.”

MEVP, the largest VC firm in the MENA region, recently received an investment from Dubai businessman Mohamed Alabbar, founder and chairman of Emaar Properties.

Read more: Dubai’s Alabbar acquires ‘large’ stake in regional VC fund MEVP

Following that investment, in June, MEVP announced an investment in Turkish fashion retailer Modacruz.

Modacruz, a mobile marketplace which deals with second-hand womens’ fashion items in Turkey, raised $2m in a series B investment round led by MEVP.

Read more: Alabbar-backed VC fund MEVP invests in Turkish fashion retailer Modacruz