UAE-based Kitopi secures $415M Series C investment

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Kitopi, a UAE-based cloud kitchen platform with a wider geographical focus, has successfully closed a $415M Series C funding round led by Softbank Vision Fund 2, with participation from Chimera, DisruptAD, B. Riley, Dogus Group, Next Play Capital and Nordstar, thereby making it the MENA region's third unicorn.

Kitopi was founded in January 2018 by Mohamad Ballout, Saman Darkan, Bader Ataya and Andy Arenas, with a mission to satisfy the world’s appetite. Headquartered in Dubai, UAE, Kitopi currently has over 2500 Kitopians (colleagues) in its 4 markets, in addition to Krakow, Poland where its engineering hub is located and its global CX center in Dubai. It also operates 60+ cloud kitchens across the UAE, KSA, Kuwait and more recently, Bahrain.


Mohamad Ballout, CEO and Cofounder of Kitopi, commented “These past 3 and a half years have taught us the importance of pursuing our vision with grit, focus, and building a high-performance culture. We are humbled to work with world-class partners such as Softbank, Chimera, DisruptAD, and others. What this shows is not only a great commitment to our company but to the industry and the region. Our focus now is to expand our presence within the Middle East and to Southeast Asia while continuing to innovate and pioneer in the cloud kitchen space. We are excited to take what we do to other parts of the world.”

Faisal Rehman, Managing Partner for SoftBank Investment Advisers, remarked “Constraints placed on the hospitality sector by the global pandemic have rapidly catalyzed the value proposition of cloud kitchens for customers and restaurant brands. We believe Kitopi’s proprietary technology is changing the unit economics of food delivery in providing more choice to more customers, in more places. Moreover we are delighted to welcome Kitopi as SoftBank’s first UAE-headquartered investment and are excited by the company’s growth prospects in the region and beyond.”

Dany Farha, Managing Partner at Beco Capital, added “Mohamad has assembled one of the highest quality leadership teams from the get-go and continues to build depth of talent across the organization. Coupling this with being one of the first in the world to innovate in the cloud kitchen space globally, makes for an incredibly exciting venture outcome to be borne out of Dubai - we are privileged to have the opportunity to work with Kitopi.”

Tushar Singhvi, Deputy CEO & Head of Investments, Crescent Enterprises, commented “We are proud to have been part of Kitopi’s spectacular growth journey since inception. At its heart, the company embodies path-breaking innovation, harnessing the power of technology to create significant value for its ecosystem partners. As a long-standing partner, CE-Ventures continues to support the company’s ambitious global expansion plans. Becoming the region’s fastest unicorn is just the beginning!”

Kitopi will utilise the new funding to fuel its continued expansion within the Middle East and support entry to new markets such as Southeast Asia, which has a highly attractive and fast growing online food delivery market. Kitopi will also continue to innovate and expand its tech stack, grow its strategic restaurant partnerships and build a best-in-class team across the organization.

Check out data on more UAE-based Food & Beverage startups