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Saudi Arabia’s Alhokair family buys stake in Egyptian BNPL platform valU

The deal comes after valU signed a deal for a microfinancing venture with FAS Labs, which is partly owned by the Alhokair family.

Saudi Arabia’s Alhokair family buys stake in Egyptian BNPL platform valU
[Source photo: Anvita Gupta/Fast Company Middle East]

Fintech apps that offer convenient services such as buy now, pay later (BNPL) will be used by half of the consumers in the Middle East and Africa in 2022, according to RedSeer. The number of fintech firms in the region is expected to surpass 465 this year, with ten platforms offering BNPL services. The convenience of split payments and online transactions has impacted consumer behavior.

To boost digital transactions in the region, Saudi Arabia’s Alhokair family has invested $12.4 million in Egyptian BNPL app valU to become a minority stakeholder. The transaction, which will give almost 5% stakes to the Alhokair family, is still subject to regulatory approvals and is the first such investment for them in Egypt. Earlier this month, valU had also entered a deal with FAS Labs, a firm owned by Alhokair and Arabian Centres Company, to introduce its BNPL services in Saudi Arabia.

The partnership gave valU a significant stake in FAS Finance, a newly formed microfinancing arm of FAS Labs. To ease access to credit for consumers, valU, which serves more than 5,74,000 users in the country through 5000 points of sale locations, also joined hands with global eCommerce giant Amazon. 

The partnership with Alhokair allows valU to access a network of 1000 retail stores in Saudi Arabia and monobrand websites, including VogaCloset.

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