SRMG launches new venture capital arm, SRMG Ventures, with first investments in regional content studio and immersive platform companies
• SRMG’s new venture capital arm focuses on supporting content creation and digital media platforms, as well as investing in media enablers and tools and immersive and interactive entertainment.
• Inaugural investments in disruptive regional production house Telfaz11 and immersive video platform VUZ will help foster groundbreaking local content and entrepreneurship.
• The use and adoption of cutting-edge technologies will enrich SRMG’s content offerings, further elevating the products and services provided to the Group's clients and audiences, both locally and internationally.
Riyadh, 28 March 2023 – SRMG, a global integrated media group, today announced the launch of its corporate venture capital arm, SRMG Ventures. In line with SRMG’s transformative growth strategy, SRMG Ventures will invest in early-stage companies and technologies within the core target areas: media creators, digital media, media enablers and tools, including generative AI, as well as immersive and interactive entertainment. SRMG Ventures will initially target investments from the seed to Series B stage.
SRMG Ventures will enable SRMG to back and empower regional talent and entrepreneurs, acting as a catalyst for further growth of the rapidly evolving media industry in the region. SRMG Ventures will provide SRMG with direct access to innovative technologies, as well as new media talent and content creators, that will continue to enhance SRMG’s own media portfolio and drive forward the future of media. The new corporate venture capital arm will additionally help SRMG penetrate new markets and further diversify its business offering, whilst generating tangible financial returns.
SRMG Ventures has also announced inaugural investments and partnerships with two fast-growing companies:
• Telfaz11; a Saudi-based creative media studio specializing in locally relevant entertainment content, and producer of the box office hit “Sattar” and feature film “Alkhallat+” which was one of the top ten most watched movies in Saudi Arabia on Netflix.
• VUZ, a leading VR-enabled social media app that allows users to engage with 360o videos enabling a new level of immersive realism.
Jomana R. Al Rashid, CEO, SRMG said: “We are excited to continue to lead and support the growth of the dynamic and fast-growing media and content industry in Saudi Arabia and beyond. Our new venture capital arm, SRMG Ventures, will enable us to discover and nurture new talent and content creators, and leverage the latest advances in virtual reality and artificial intelligence. The adoption of cutting-edge technologies will invigorate SRMG’s products and services, further elevating content offerings and experiences for our local and global audiences. Our first investments in two leading companies, one local and one regional, led by exceptional creatives from the Arab world, mark the beginning of this thrilling endeavor.”
The announcement comes at an important moment for the MENA media and venture capital sectors. The MENA media and entertainment sector is expected to grow at 9% to exceed $20 billion by 2026, outpacing global growth.1 In addition, the MENA region, and Saudi Arabia in particular, is experiencing a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem, with venture capital funding crossing the US$3bn mark in 2022, an annual rise of 8.3%, with Saudi Arabia startups securing US$987m in 2022, a 72% increase compared to 2021.2