ImpactAlpha, November 12 – Pakistan is the fifth most populous country in the world, but its investment ecosystem is still more development-focused than innovation-focused. (Micro- and small business finance rather than venture capital.) But a new $20 million fund launched by Pakistani conglomerate Fatima Group and Shanghai-based Gobi Partners wants to invest in Pakistan’s homegrown entrepreneurs.
Fatima Gobi Ventures aims to invest in 15 to 20 seed and Series A-stage tech companies building solutions in: mobility, logistics, financial services, healthcare, education, e-commerce, connectivity and consumer tech, as well as products and services catering to the global Muslim population.
It’s not an impact fund in the traditional sense, but it will have an impact as a new source of early capital in a large market where startup funding is scarce. Indeed, Fatima Group is one of only a few active venture funding players in the market via its accelerator program and small venture capital fund, Fatima Ventures.
Others include Sarmayacar and i2i Ventures.
All are early stage investors whose deal sizes range between $100,000 to $2 million due to the nascence of Pakistan’s startup ecosystem. (i2i Ventures, which has two deals under its belt, just launched in August after running an accelerator program for eight years.)
Fatima Gobi Ventures launched in March and is expected to close this month, per regional news sources.