MENA – Amethis, through its newly launched fund, Amethis MENA Fund II (AMF2), has completed its second transaction, acquiring a minority stake in Tarjama.
Founded in 2008 by Jordanian entrepreneur Nour Al Hassan, Tarjama is a language technology & services provider in the MENA region.
The company has developed proprietary language technology products including a best-in-class Arabic-focused machine translation engine as well as Cleverso, its high-performing translation management system.
“Our investment in Tarjama exemplifies our strategy of backing exceptional and growth-focused entrepreneurs operating successfully in fast-growing sectors. We are excited to support Nour Al Hassan and the Tarjama team as the company embarks on its next chapter,” Toufic Khoueiry, who led the transaction for Amethis, said.
With a growing presence in the MENA region, Tarjama which is woman-led enjoys gender parity and is a dynamic employer of youth across the region.
“By investing in Tarjama, Amethis is proud to be backing not only a market leader in the attractive MENA localization market but also a high-growth woman-led SME that has already achieved gender parity,” Laurent Demey, Amethis Founding Partner, said.
Amethis’ investment in Tarjama will support the company in realizing its AI technology roadmap and in executing an ambitious organic and inorganic growth strategy across the region’s main markets.
“This investment by Amethis creates an exceptional opportunity for us to build up our technological capabilities and securely position Tarjama as the leader in language AI across the region,” Nour Al Hassan, Tarjama Founder & CEO, said.
“We’re eager for this next phase of growth where we’ll significantly develop our current product portfolio, create new customer-focused products, and expand our presence to global markets.”
Dechert LLP acted as legal advisor to Nour Al Hassan & Tarjama while Hourani & Partners acted as legal advisor to Amethis.
PwC and Slator were also retained by Amethis for financial, tax, and commercial due diligence.
Amethis was created nine years ago. The new fund is Amethis’ second SME MENA fund and fifth investment vehicle overall. The fund’s final closing is scheduled for July 2022.
The PE firm marked the first close of Amethis MENA Fund II at $101 million. The fund will make majority and minority investments in the range of €5-15 million in small- and medium-sized enterprises in Morocco, Egypt, Tunisia and Jordan.
The new fund is aiming to scoop up €150 million, twice the sum it is managing under the regional Amethis Maghreb Fund I.
The new fund previously invested in Magriser, a distributor of micro-irrigation systems in Morocco.
Amethis had entered Morocco by taking over the management of the fund named Capital North Africa Fund II in 2018. This vehicle was rechristened as Amethis Maghreb Fund I, and focuses on North Africa.
The PE firm recently expanded its top team by bringing in Nicolas Manardo as a partner, taking the total partner count to seven. He will be in charge of developing a new fund focused on supporting French and European SMEs expanding to Africa by making them benefit from synergies with Amethis’s African teams and portfolio.
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