Egyptian startup – Thndr – raises $20 million to democratize investing in the MENA region
Thndr, the Egyptian digital investment platform, announces a new $20 million series A investment. The round was co-led by Tiger Global, BECO Capital and Prosus Ventures, in addition to participation from Base Capital, firstminute and existing investors Endure Capital, 4DX Ventures, Raba Partnerships and JIMCO.
The new funding will go towards product development and to expand Thndr’s presence across MENA. Thndr has grown assets under custody rapidly – 29x during 2021 – and monthly traded values up are by similar levels. Thndr also accounted for 36% of all new registrations in the local Egyptian exchanges during 2021.
Launched in late 2020 by Ahmad Hammouda and Seif Amr, Thndr is filling this gap by transforming the traditionally outdated, slow, and non-user-friendly process of opening and managing investment accounts in the region. The company is making it easy to invest in stocks, bonds, and funds in the region through its mobile-based and low-commission digital stock brokerage.
Compared to the US and Europe, MENA countries are significantly underserved when it comes to investment platforms and current investor penetration is less than 3 percent across the region.
MENA’s market fundamentals are compelling: The region’s population of 370 million amasses $500 billion in annual savings; 62 percent have smartphones; and half the population is aged between 14-45 years old. Platforms like Thndr are creating investors out of members of the population who previously had limited equity market exposure. In fact, 87 percent of Thndr’s user base are first time investors and 40 percent of users come from rural areas.
Ahmad Hammouda, Co-Founder and CEO of Thndr, said:
“We are building an investment supermarket for MENA consumers to access relevant investment products. With a focus on financial literacy, we equip investors with the knowledge to make self-directed investment decisions. We pride ourselves in being agents of change in the investment sector, and staying true to our mission of democratizing investing for everybody in the region. The support from leading global investors is a significant endorsement to our strategy and the very clear market opportunity in the region. We’re thrilled to announce this new funding to continue pioneering wealthtech in the region.”
Alex Cook, Partner at Tiger Global, commented:
“We’re excited to support Ahmad, Seif, and the Thndr team as they make investing more accessible in Egypt and the MENA region. The market is lacking a low cost, easy to use platform for investing and saving, and we believe Thndr will deliver best-in-class customer experience as the platform scales.”
Yousef Hammad, Managing Partner at BECO Capital, said:
“The Thndr team’s vision and mission to empower millions of individuals across the MENA region, starting off with Egypt, to become everyday investors resonated very strongly with us. We have been close to the Thndr team since the very beginning and have seen first hand the team’s ability to continuously execute. After scoping the MENA landscape, it became very clear that Hammouda and the Thndr team are tackling the space in a far superior way to others.”
Sandeep Bakshi, Head of European Investments for Prosus Ventures, commented:“Compared to other developed regions, the opportunity in MENA for equity brokerage is more complex for an international player to capture given the regional fragmentation, cultural nuances, and regulatory framework. Thndr is in a unique position to execute on this massive opportunity. We believe the company’s mission is part of a transformative era for fintech in the region, enabling a larger and younger population of individuals to access equity capital markets.”