Tamara raises $110 million in Series A round

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  • Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - Saudi Arabia-based Tamara, a buy now pay later (BNPL) startup, has raised $110 million in both debt and equity for its Series A round led by Checkout.com, a UK-based payments company
  • It is the largest investment ever raised by a Saudi startup and the largest Series A round raised by a Middle East startup. The investment will be used to fuel Tamara’s expansion to all GCC markets by the end of 2021
  • Tamara was founded in 2020, by Abdulmajeed Alsukhan and his partners Turki Bin Zarah and Abdulmohsen Albabtain. Alsukhan is also the co-founder of e-grocery startup, Nana
  • Tamara was one of the first BNPL companies to be enrolled in the Central Bank’s Sandbox programme. It is the fastest-growing provider of BNPL in Saudi, with its user base up ~180% month-on-month and transaction volume growing ~170% month-on-month on average, over the past six months
  • The BNPL market expected to grow 400% reaching an estimated $680 billion in transaction volume globally by 2025

Press release

Tamara, the leading Saudi Buy-Now-Pay-Later platform announced the closing of the largest Series A funding round in MENA of $110 million led by Checkout.com. The investment will help Tamara expedite its expansion across the GCC by the end of 2021 and the greater region thereafter. 

Founded in 2020, by serial entrepreneur Abdulmajeed Alsukhan and his partners Turki Bin Zarah and Abdulmohsen Albabtain, Tamara was the first BNPL firm to be enrolled in the Saudi Central Bank (SAMA)’s Sandbox program. Since then, it closed a round of $6 million in seed funding in January 2021 which was also considered the largest seed round in Saudi Arabia, 5 months after its official launch in September 2020. 

The startups has quickly established itself as a market-leader in Saudi and successfully landed some of the most popular brands in Saudi such as SACO, Whites, Nejree and Nice One. The company also expanded its services to UAE with prominent partners like Namshi and Floward. Tamara was also able to launch its mobile consumer app along with its in-store service with multiple local partners. The $110M cash injection (debt & equity) will be used by the Company to scale its team, open new countries in the GCC and fund the distribution of its BNPL product.

Abdulmajeed Alsukhan, Tamara’s Co-founder & CEO said: “Tamara was born to make a change. The region and the world need payment solutions that are transparent and customer-oriented. At Tamara, we offer our customers an alternative to credit cards and Cash on Delivery (COD), which enhances their shopping experience. Our solution also increases our merchant partners’ efficiency as well as their customer satisfaction. This transaction is only the beginning of our journey, and a great sign that we are on the right track. We are proud to have the trust of such an investor and we will continue expanding our products to transform the payments industry in the region.”

Sebastian Reis, Executive Vice President at Checkout.com said: “As the partner of choice for the region's leading eCommerce merchants, Checkout.com is always on the lookout for ways to enhance the ecosystem. Tamara has rapidly proven itself to be a natural leader in the BNPL space. Our investment in Tamara will help the team realise their vision and expand rapidly, driving greater conversions for retailers and offer more flexibility for consumers.”

Visa estimates that the eCommerce sector in the MENA region will be valued at $49 billion by as soon as 2022. Tamara is well-positioned to tap the rapidly growing Buy Now Pay Later segment in MENA. Its Shariah-compliant offering is used by merchants to increase sales revenue, whilst serving as a credible alternative to cash on delivery (COD). The solution is accessible via direct API integration or plugins and offers consumers new ways to pay online - either splitting balances over three payments or paying 30 days later. 

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