Revealed: Saudi billionaire's Careem investment worth $62m

Prince Alwaleed's Kingdom Holding Company says it has acquired a 7% stake in Dubai ride hailing firm

Kingdom Holding Company, the investment vehicle chaired by Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud, on Thursday revealed more details about its acquired stake in Dubai-based ride-hailing firm Careem.

The company said in a statement that it acquired a 7 percent stake in Careem through a secondary share purchase as well as participating in the latest funding round, amounting to a total transaction value of $62 million.

The transaction makes Kingdom one of the largest shareholders in Careem and will grant it a board seat on Careem’s board of directors.

CEO Talal Ibrahim Al Maiman said: “Our investment in Careem is a continuation of our strategy to invest in new technologies as we have done with our investments in Twitter, JD.com and Lyft.

"As the leading ride hailing company in the region, and positioned with excellent growth prospects, Careem sets an example for regional businesses by providing employment opportunities to locals and developing talent.”

He added: “KHC has nominated its current CFO Mohamed Fahmy Soliman to represent KHC on Careem’s board.”

The latest funding bring Careem’s estimated valuation to more than $1 billion, with reports from the US claiming the technology company is now worth as much as $1.5 billion.

The Dubai-headquartered transport app launched in 2012 and rivals Uber and other homegrown transport apps to provide on-demand services in the Middle East.

It operates in more than 50 cities across 13 countries, the most recent launch of which was Palestine earlier this week.

Careem founders Mudassir Sheikha and Magnus Olsson told Arabian Business last year that their aim was to take the company public by 2020.

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