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Shortly after raising its funding round from The Cairo Angels surpassing the $1M mark in their total fundraise to date, Egypt-based home servicing platform FilKhedma gets fully acquired by South-African based platform SweepSouth. This merger will create a new entity combining the Tech stack and Market Reach of the two startups, creating new opportunities for market and product offering growth.
Founded in 2014, by Omar Ramadan, Filkhedma is Egypt’s leading home services marketplace operating across three cities and serving tens of thousands of customers with cleaning, maintenance, and beauty services, while empowering over 2 000 service providers through technology with consistent incomes and professional development. Over in South Africa, SweepSouth, founded in the same year by Aisha Pandor and Alen Ribic, offers a consolidated platform for home servicing in Kenya, Nigeria, and South Africa. Ramadan will play a key role in the executive team of the combined entity which all employees of Filkhedma will stay on. The acquisition positions SweepSouth as one of a few African start-ups operating in the continent’s four key tech ecosystems adding Egypt to the Map.
20% of all exits recorded in Egypt since 2015 have been recorded throughout this year, which roves a stellar year for VC ecosystems across the board. With this latest acquisition, along with the announcement of Egypt-based EdTech Tyro acquiring its local counterpart Nafham in November, Exits recorded this year are now equal to the all-time high of 6 exits in 2019. As most recently recorded in our November Venture Investment Dashboard, Egypt seems to be closing the year top-ranked in number of deals closed in 2021 YTD, growing by 23% YoY, with investors like Flat6Labs, Global Ventures, AUC Angles, Falak Startups, and Y Combinator boosting the deal flow to reach new heights. The rising number of acquisitions, especially when taken into consideration the nature of the mergers and acquirer profiles, also shows a great sign of maturity for the Egyptian VC ecosystem. Of the most anticipated exits, this year were Egypt-based logistics and fulfillment startup FWRUN acquired by KSA-based counterpart DIGGIPACKS, and Egypt-based automotive marketplace Sa3ar acquired by local counterpart ContactCars.
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For South Africa, the biggest change will be the imminent rollout of beauty services. This will include manicures and pedicures, hair care, and makeup services that can be done at home. This not only gives SweepSouth customers access to more services, but it also gives entrepreneurs in the field the opportunity to list on the platform. This, in turn, allows access to a larger pool of potential customers. “We are thrilled to have Filkhedma as part of the SweepSouth family,” says Aisha Pandor, Co-founder/CEO of SweepSouth. “It’s not only their services that align with ours, but also their values and culture. Just like us, Filkhedma is passionate about providing quality and trusted home services, while creating work opportunities for those who need it most.” Co-founder Alen Ribic added, “We’ve proven out our technology and operational expertise in numerous markets in Sub Saharan Africa, and this acquisition gives us the opportunity to extend that reach into Egypt, a huge market with millions of households. Coming together with the Filkhedma team represents the next phase of building SweepSouth into a global platform that will continue to expand our services not only on the continent but further abroad as well.”
For Egypt, the company will benefit from SweepSouth’s technology, as well as the indoor and outdoor home cleaning services already available in South Africa, Kenya, and Nigeria. This new power partnership, between two tech startups in the same vertical, will empower Filkhedma to expand rapidly into markets locally and neighboring markets as well. Omar Ramadan, who will play a key role in the executive team of the combined entity which all Filkhedma employees will stay on highlighted “We are happy with this incredible milestone and excited about joining forces with the SweepSouth team to fulfill our vision of empowering providers and delivering quality services in Africa and beyond. We already have well over 2 000 service providers on our platform and we’re confident that with the backing of SweepSouth, we will be able to sign up many more and expand into neighboring countries, too.”
Of the many strategic acquisitions we’ve observed this year, FilKhedma and SweepSouth are set to create an exceptional synergy and business focus as they merge their resources, talent, and most importantly shareholder network. Commenting on this acquisition, initial investors also shared their high hopes for this strategic move. Naspers Foundery Head Fabian Whate highlighted “ Filkhedma is an excellent business and is aligned to SweepSouth’s ambitions to expand its service offering and gain access to high-growth markets across the region. Egypt’s growing middle class and rising financial inclusion and internet penetration, offer huge opportunities for the combined home services platform of the two companies.” Tarek Assaad, Managing Partner at Algebra Ventures, lead investor in Filkhedma, concluded “Filkhedma pioneered the home services industry to become the largest player in Egypt, and this consolidation with SweepSouth demonstrates the parallel fits between Egypt and Sub-Saharan Africa.”
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