UAE's Amanat invests in US-based BEGiN

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News • 19 October, 2020

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Source: Gulf Business

’s education and healthcare investment firm Amanat Holdings has made a Dhs18.4m ($5m) investment in BEGiN, a US-based education technology company.

The edtech company behind the early learning programme HOMER, BEGiN is focused on early childhood education via a platform aimed at children between two and eight years of age.

As part of the investment, Amanat becomes BEGiN’s principal strategic partner in the MENA region, leveraging its industry expertise and network to help drive growth in the region.

Amanat joins investors such as LEGO Ventures, Sesame Workshop, Gymboree Play & Music, 3One4 Capital, Trustbridge Partners and Interlock Partners.

“BEGiN is partnering with the largest, most recognised brands in international children’s education, entertainment, and technology to reimagine the early learning journey starting with parents and children at home,” said Neal Shenoy, CEO and co-founder of BEGiN.

The acquisition is Amanat’s first ever venture capital investment, and is in line with Amanat’s goals to invest in education and healthcare technology players. It also bolsters Amanat’s commitment to the ongoing digitisation of the education and healthcare sectors in the region.

Dr. Mohamad Hamade, CEO of Amanat, commented: “Our investment in BEGiN represents a major milestone for Amanat given the influential impact of disruptive technologies on the sectors we invest in.

“We believe this is an ideal time to invest in education and healthcare technology, to evolve our current portfolio as well as position Amanat as a strategic regional partner amongst global players in this space. We are looking at opportunities that are changing the provision of conventional academia and healthcare and we believe there is potential for further acquisitions of this nature down the line.”

Earlier this month, BEGiN launched the early learning programme, HOMER Learn & Grow, expanding the reading programme to include additional subjects including math, creativity, socio-emotional learning and critical thinking skills delivered across digital, physical and in-person learning experiences.

In 2018, Amanat Holdings acquired a 35 per cent stake in Abu Dhabi University Holding Company.

Amanat’s education platform includes Taaleem, a provider of K12 and early education in the UAE; Abu Dhabi University Holding Company, a higher education provider; and Middlesex University Dubai, the first overseas campus of the Middlesex University in London.

Amanat also owns the real estate assets of the North London Collegiate School in Dubai, UAE.

Meanwhile, Amanat’s healthcare platform includes International Medical Center (IMC), a 300-bed multi-disciplinary hospital based in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia; Sukoon, a provider of acute extended care, critical care and home care medical services in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia; and the Royal Hospital for Women and Children (RHWC), a hospital for women and children located in Bahrain.

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