Swvl, a ride-sharing startup based in Dubai, is getting ready to go public via a Special Purpose Acquisition Company (SPAC), according to The Wall Street Journal.
Over the past year, SPACs have become increasingly popular by raising around $115 billion this year alone. This success is the result of its unique way to raise money through initial public offerings (IPOs) of a shell company, then merging with another company to allow them to go public.
The plans shared by people familiar with the matter involve the merging with Queen’s Gambit Growth Capital, which would value the startup at around $1.5 billion and allow it to be publicly listed in the process-
Founded in 2017 by Mostafa Kandi, a former employee for ride-sharing company Careem, Swvl operates in the Middle East and Africa by facilitating ride-sharing in regions with heavy traffic using its patented technology.
While companies like Uber currently offer similar services, Swvl aims to be a reliable alternative for people who depend on ride-sharing to reach their place of work or study.
Queen’s Gambit, which is led entirely by women, raised $300 million back in January when it went public and has been looking to invest in a company that offers sustainability in the sectors of clean energy, healthcare, mobility, or industrials, ultimately deciding to go with Swvl.
As a result of the merge. Queen’s Gambit Chief Executive Victoria Grace will be joining the board of directors along with another executive which is still to be named. The deal also involves two other executives joining the startup’s advisory board.
The startup is currently planning to expand its operations to Latin America and Europe, a plan that will be boosted by another investment of approximately $100 million by Agility, Luxor Capital Group LP, and Zain Group
With a total of 6 funding rounds to date, SWVL has raised about $174 million in total funding from 19 investors that include VNV Global, Blu Stone Management, Sawari Ventures, and Dash Ventures.