SiFi Raises $10M to Expand in Saudi Arabia’s Spend Management Sector


SiFi, a Saudi Arabia-based spend management startup, has raised $10 million in seed funding to further its growth in the MENA region, particularly in its home market. The funding round was led by Sanabil Investments, a member of Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, and RAED Ventures, an early-stage MENA VC.

Key Points:

  • Founded: 2021 by Ahmed Alhakbani.
  • Purpose: Simplified Financial Solutions Company (SiFi) helps organizations manage all their spending, including vendor and bill payments.
  • Funding Use: The funds will be used to expand operations in Saudi Arabia, leveraging the Electronic Money Institution (EMI) license granted by the Saudi Central Bank (SAMA) in the previous year.

SiFi’s Product Offerings:

  1. Corporate Cards: Allows companies to control card usage and limit expenditures based on merchant or geographic levels.
  2. Reimbursement Management: Enables employees to submit reimbursement requests, expenses, and invoices.
  3. Spend Management Solutions: Helps companies avoid issues like human error, fraud, lack of proper workflows, approval delays, and lack of spend visibility.

Market Context:

  • The global spend management sector is growing, driven by increasing internet penetration, technological advancements, and businesses’ focus on efficient spending.
  • The sector is projected to grow at a CAGR of 10.3% by 2030, with rising adoption in the MENA region as companies seek better expense management tools.

SiFi’s Competitive Edge:

  • Technological Integration: SiFi’s platform can integrate within any market, although initial growth will focus on Saudi Arabia.
  • User Base: A community of 50,000 domain experts across various fields, offering personalized, detailed product guidance to online shoppers.

Competitors in the MENA Region:

  • Sanad: Based in Saudi Arabia.
  • Pemo: UAE-based, raised a significant seed round in 2022.
  • Alaan: Also a UAE-based competitor.

Investors in the Seed Round:

  • Sanabil Investments
  • RAED Ventures
  • anb seed
  • Rua Ventures
  • Byld
  • KBW Ventures
  • Existing VCs: Khwarizmi Ventures, Seedra Ventures, and Tech Invest Com.

Strategic Importance:

  • Saudi Arabia’s Startup Ecosystem: SiFi’s funding reflects the growing venture investment in Saudi Arabia, driven by government initiatives to foster innovation and diversify the economy beyond oil dependence.

SiFi’s founder, Ahmed Alhakbani, who previously worked as the head of customs in Saudi Arabia, was inspired to create SiFi to address the fragmented expense management he observed. The platform aims to streamline financial operations and enhance the efficiency of finance departments in serving their organizations.

By securing significant seed funding, SiFi is poised to make substantial strides in the spend management sector, aiming to scale its innovative solutions and potentially expand beyond Saudi Arabia in the future.

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