Aramco Boosts Wa’ed Ventures to $500m, Partners with Zoom for Global Data Center
Saudi Arabian oil giant Aramco has announced that it is increasing the size of its venture capital arm, Wa’ed Ventures, from $200m to $500m by allocating an additional $300m in funds.
Riyadh, February 7, 2023 – As reported by Gulf Business, the move is aimed at accelerating investment performance both regionally and globally, and is part of the company's strategy to promote innovation in the kingdom.
Wa'ed Ventures has a mission to localise frontier technologies, expand investments in mid and growth-stage startups, and fund domains that are currently underserved, such as environmental, social and governance, the metaverse, and quantum computing.
@Waed_Ventures announces at #LEAP23 the expansion of its investment fund to support Saudi tech companies by localizing global innovations & investments. pic.twitter.com/lvtGTJXu7m— LEAP (@LEAPandInnovate) February 6, 2023
Aramco made the announcement at the LEAP tech conference in Riyadh, where it also revealed a strategic partnership with Zoom to build the latter's first global data center in Saudi Arabia. The move is expected to help with the digital transformation of sectors such as energy, industry, education, and healthcare.
Read: LEAP 2023 In Riyadh Sees US$9 Billion Worth Of Investments Made In Saudi Arabia's Tech Sector
"Our establishment of a diversified network of partners has helped us maintain a track record of reliability, and our new strategic partnership with Zoom is expected to further enable innovative solutions focusing on the digital transformation ecosystem. Furthermore, with an expanded fund size, Wa’ed Ventures aims to facilitate the cross-pollination of innovation between the global and local markets," said Amin H. Nasser, Aramco president and CEO.
Last month, Wa’ed Ventures made its debut investment in an Asian start-up, plugging in $14m in Terra Drone Corporation, a Japanese drone technology company.
Also read: Saudi Arabia's Wa'ed Ventures Invests In Paris-Based PASQAL And Tokyo-Based Terra Drone As Part Of Its New Global Agenda