Anghami, the first Arab startup to be listed in New York

The two co-founders of Anghami merge their startup with Vista Media Acquisition Company.

The Lebanese start-up Anghami, regional leader in music streaming, which has just moved to the center of Abu Dhabi the Hub71, will merge with Vista Media Acquisition Company (VMAC) and become the first tech company in the Arab world to be listed in New York. The deal is expected to be finalized in the second quarter of 2021.

VMAC is a SPAC (Special Purpose Acquisition Company), i.e. an investment vehicle which at the time of its IPO has no operational activity, and whose sole objective is to raise funds. to finance a future acquisition or merger. Introduced last year, VMAC had raised $ 100 million and was looking for a company to invest in. His choice fell on Anghami who thus accesses the financial markets without going through the long and expensive process of an initial public offering (IPO). “We were looking to raise funds when VMAC expressed its interest,” says Élie Habib, co-founder of the start-up with Eddy Maroun. The duo now owns 32% of the shares of the new entity.

The transaction also includes an additional contribution of $ 40 million, through private placements in public companies (Private Investment in Public Entity, PIPE in English) secured by SHUAA Capital, the Dubai investment fund, which had already invested in Anghami last January, and Vistas Media Capital Singapore. The start-up can thus count on approximately 142 million dollars of cash in its balance sheet.

On the stock market, Anghami’s valuation could reach $ 220 million, estimates Élie Habib. “The fundraising will allow us to expand, particularly in Saudi Arabia and Egypt, as well as target new emerging markets. The funds will also be used to offer new content and to employ more and more new talents, ”he adds.

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Anghami’s revenue grew 7% in 2020, to $ 31 million. The start-up has more than 70 million registered users and around 1 billion songs listened to per month.

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