Khaleej Times, Monday, Aug 29, 2022 | Safar 2, 1444
Gulf buy now, pay later firm Tamara says it raised $100 million
Emirates: Gulf buy now, pay later (BNPL) firm
Tamara said on Monday it raised $100 million in a second round of fundraising
from investors including Sanabil Investments, which is owned by Saudi Arabia’s
sovereign wealth fund PIF.
The series ‘B’ funding would support the Saudi-based startup to expand into new
markets, and introduce new services and products. It did not specify which
“We believe the region has a different situation today than globally. The region
is thriving with high oil prices,” chief executive Abdulmajeed Alsukhan told
“We want to make sure our customers find the right products that suit them and
find amazing deals.”
Tamara, which has over three million active shoppers, is one of the Gulf Arab
region’s largest BNPL providers and competes with companies including
Demand for BNPL, which allow consumers to order and take a product without
immediately paying, has risen in recent years, driven by an increase in online
The provider pays the merchant immediately and is paid back by the consumer in
installments, typically only earning revenue from transaction fees charged to
Tamara was founded in 2020 by Saudi entrepreneurs Abdulmajeed Alsukhan, Turki
bin Zarah and Abdulmohsen Albabtain.
It has so far raised $215 million in capital and has partnered with firms
including Ikea and Saudi retailer Jarir, in addition to e-commerce platforms
SHEIN and NAMSHI.
Other investors that participated in its latest round included global investment
manager Coatue, Gulf technology investor Shurooq Partners, co-investment vehicle
Endeavor Catalyst and existing investor Checkout.com, a global payment solutions
Tamara is also in negotiations with local, regional and international lenders
for debt financing, a new foray for banks in the region that are still learning
about the nascent sector, Alsukhan said.
It expects to reach profitability next year, with plans for a listing in Saudi
Arabia in the future, which may include a second listing in other markets such
as the United Kingdom, he said.
The BNPL business model emerged in times of very low interest rates, but the
prospect of sustained increases to interest rates could spell trouble for the
“We believe that the interest rate as of today is still manageable,” Alsukhan
said. “However, there is no doubt that in such a business that if interest rates
goes way beyond where it is today, then it’s definitely problematic to all.”