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Venture Capital
innovation.kaust.edu.sa

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Investments

21

Funds

1

Partners & Customers

1

About KAUST Innovation Fund

The KAUST Innovation Fund, formerly known as the Seed Fund, supports the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology's pipeline of technology-based startup projects and companies. It also invests in high-profile international technology companies willing to establish their operations in Saudi Arabia and to benefit from synergies with KAUST research activities.

KAUST Innovation Fund Headquarter Location

4700 King Abdullah University of Science & Technology

Thuwal, 23955-6900,

Saudi Arabia

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Latest KAUST Innovation Fund News

KSA & UAE based AgTech startup Red Sea Farms raised $18.5 million led by Wa'ed, venture arm Aramco

Apr 27, 2022

KSA and UAE AgTech business Red Sea Farms raised $18. million led by Wa’ed - the venture capital arm of Saudi Aramco, and The Savola Group - the investment holding group in MENA food and retail, through their corporate venture capital program, also saw participation from KAUST Innovation Fund, along with OlsonUbben LLC. The new funds will support Red Sea Farms’ global and regional expansion plans – including expansion of the fresh produce business in the GCC focusing on technology development, and productization. Founded in 2018 by Mark Tester and Ryan Lefers, Red Sea Farms enables commercial farming using a low energy, zero freshwater sustainable climate control. The startup aims to promote environmental and economic sustainability by meeting the nutritional needs of water-scarce populations. The company is trying to reduce food insecurity and the food sector’s carbon and water footprint. Red Sea Farms announced its expansion into the USA in January 2022. Ryan Lefers, CEO of Red Sea Farms, said: “We are delighted to complete this $18.5 million fund raise and build on our impressive start to 2022. To have such esteemed investors believe in our vision is hugely validating and testament to our business model and strategy. We’re excited to continue on our mission to address the reliance on freshwater consumption in food production and improve food security with their support and guidance.” Fahad Alidi, Managing Director at Wa’ed, commented: “Red Sea Farms has developed a truly innovative and sustainable business model that not only addresses a global issue around food security and limited agricultural resources, but one that is also regionally relevant. Wa’ed is proud to be one of the early supporters to back the pioneering team at Red Sea Farms as they tackle an emerging Agtech industry with decades long interdisciplinary research."

KAUST Innovation Fund Investments

21 Investments

KAUST Innovation Fund has made 21 investments. Their latest investment was in Red Sea Farms as part of their Series B on April 4, 2022.

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KAUST Innovation Fund Investments Activity

investments chart

Date

Round

Company

Amount

New?

Co-Investors

Sources

4/25/2022

Series B

Red Sea Farms

$18.5M

No

1

8/16/2021

Series A - II

Red Sea Farms

$6M

No

4

2/17/2021

Series A

Natufia Labs

$3.5M

Yes

5

10/13/2020

Seed VC

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$99M

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10

11/6/2019

Seed VC - II

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$99M

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10

Date

4/25/2022

8/16/2021

2/17/2021

10/13/2020

11/6/2019

Round

Series B

Series A - II

Series A

Seed VC

Seed VC - II

Company

Red Sea Farms

Red Sea Farms

Natufia Labs

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Amount

$18.5M

$6M

$3.5M

$99M

$99M

New?

No

No

Yes

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Co-Investors

Sources

1

4

5

10

10

KAUST Innovation Fund Fund History

1 Fund History

KAUST Innovation Fund has 1 fund, including KAUST Innovation Fund.

Closing Date

Fund

Fund Type

Status

Amount

Sources

6/7/2015

KAUST Innovation Fund

1

Closing Date

6/7/2015

Fund

KAUST Innovation Fund

Fund Type

Status

Amount

Sources

1

KAUST Innovation Fund Partners & Customers

1 Partners and customers

KAUST Innovation Fund has 1 strategic partners and customers. KAUST Innovation Fund recently partnered with McLaren Group on September 9, 2018.

Date

Type

Business Partner

Country

News Snippet

Sources

9/4/2018

Partner

United Kingdom

KAUST Innovation & Economic Development KAUST partners with McLaren Racing on R&D.

McLaren and KAUST signed a five-year research and development agreement focused on extreme performance technology .

1

Date

9/4/2018

Type

Partner

Business Partner

Country

United Kingdom

News Snippet

KAUST Innovation & Economic Development KAUST partners with McLaren Racing on R&D.

McLaren and KAUST signed a five-year research and development agreement focused on extreme performance technology .

Sources

1

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