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"The biggest and most ambitious source on industry insights in MENA venture capital history."

The MENA Early Stage
Data Handbook

2023 Roadmap

0.1

Stress Testing

January – March
Stress-test the model's margins of error against 2023 data not used in building the model
Completed
α

Limited Release

March
Charts and overall insights shared with the community; PDF, LinkedIn, landing page, no marketing
Completed
Download PDF
Last updated:
April 9, 2023 Updated footnotes on p.24, 25
April 2, 2023 Updated p.10
β

Full Release

May – June
Data on sectors, in-depth insights for application in ops, and methodology documentation
Rolling out
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Last updated:
Dec 4, 2024 Website
July 23, 2023 Slides
July 19, 2023 Write-up
1.0

In Vivo

Q3
Joint project with a select VC partner to verify this Handbook's usefulness in real world situations
Graduated
Visit
The project is now part of Clearworld's Common Intelligence initiative

What's covered

35 charts and data insights to use in your operations and tactical decision-making, 29 of which are published for the first time in MENA.

This is the first source to cover MENA startup valuation benchmarks. It is also the first to provide benchmarking data on founder dilution, failure and success rates, and holding period from seed to series A to series B.

  • Breakdown of active startups in MENA from the MENA Early Stage Data Handbook 2023 by Clearworld
  • Breakdown of active startups in MENA by stage from the MENA Early Stage Data Handbook 2023 by Clearworld
  • Breakdown of active startups in UAE, Saudi and Egypt by stage from the MENA Early Stage Data Handbook 2023 by Clearworld

Where and what stage are the active startups in MENA in 2023

Today, MENA has roughly 3000 active startups, from pre-seed stage to beyond series B

In 4 charts, the Handbook breaks down the pipeline of active startups by stage and country.

  • Pipeline quality for seed investment in MENA from the MENA Early Stage Data Handbook 2023 by Clearworld
  • Pipeline noise for seed investment in MENA from the MENA Early Stage Data Handbook 2023 by Clearworld

What is the quality of the pipeline of MENA startups in 2023

Only 26% of the prospects in the pre-seed pipeline may fit the minimum requirements for VC investment

Knowing this information beforehand can set your expectations if you are a seed investor or an accelerator.

  • Pre-seed conversion success rate and failure rate in MENA from the MENA Early Stage Data Handbook 2023 by Clearworld

What are the success and failure rates of MENA startups

Roughly 50% of MENA pre-seed and seed startups never make it to the next stage

In 6 charts, the Handbook covers success and failure rates of pre-seed, seed, and series A startups, as well as by country. Use this to calculate your expected return.

  • Premoney valuation at seed round in MENA from the MENA Early Stage Data Handbook 2023 by Clearworld

Premoney valuation benchmarks in MENA 2023

MENA seed startups are normally priced between $1M and $9M

In 6 charts, the Handbook covers premoney valuation at seed stage, and experimentally at series A and series B, as well as by country.

  • Time to first seed round in MENA from the MENA Early Stage Data Handbook 2023 by Clearworld
  • Seed stage dilution in MENA from the MENA Early Stage Data Handbook 2023 by Clearworld
  • Number of investors at seed round in MENA from the MENA Early Stage Data Handbook 2023 by Clearworld

Dilution, co-Investing, ticket size, and holding period benchmarks in MENA, UAE, Saudi and Egypt in 2023

There is simply no other source available as of 2023 who provides this level of visibility on MENA early stage data and venture lifecycle in MENA, UAE, Saudi and Egypt.

the datasets

10k

Companies

Self-identifying as ‘startup’, founded in MENA since 1/1/2008
3,663 are startups
6,613 are not, but are used in hypothesis testing
1.1k

Non-MENA

Startups whose cap table includes investors from MENA or investors active in MENA
Used for comparisons, benchmarks and hypothesis testing
1.3k

Investors

From MENA or active in MENA after 1/1/2010
344 MENA-based firms
1,001 Non-MENA firms
5k

Funding Rounds

Announced after 1/1/2010
2,930 seed to post-B
1,642 with MENA ventures
1,288 Non-MENA ventures

The Clearworld Model is a data enrichment model built on top of publicly-accessible data. The Model with its 160 enrichment features is a proprietary model of Clearworld developed continuously since 2019 to enable scientifically and statistically-sound research into venture industries that suffer from limited data not assuming normalcy. It is a generalized model with MENA being a special case.

What you can do

View the Alpha version (limited release)

Download The Handbook limited release

Share your thoughts

On your social media or directly to the editor

Tell others about this project

Share the PDF directly or refer them to this URL: https://clear.world/handbook

If you wish to be part of the In Vivo stage

If you want to collaborate with us and test The Handbook in your operations, reach out to us: corporate@clear.world

Copyright © 2023 Eden Rabbie and Clearworld, PO Box 415816 Dubai, UAE. This document is not financial advice. You may use any part of this document for any purpose on condition that you link to it and cite it properly:
Rabbie, Eden. (2023). The MENA Early Stage Handbook 2023. Clearworld [Online]. https://clear.world/handbook

Clearworld is a Dubai-based management consultancy, DET license 946385. Startup Report MENA is a platform developed using the Clearworld Model. It is a public service managed by Clearworld aimed to catalyze the innovation and venture capital industry in MENA. The intention is to keep it free of charge.