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Monday, 8 February 2021

Fintech vies with healthcare as Egypt’s hottest sector

E-payments giant Fawry is looking to make up to two acquisitions this year, founder and CEO Ashraf Sabry tells Reuters in an interview picked up by the local press. The company is apparently exploring seven or eight startups offering B2C digital payments services, with a plan to acquire shares in one or two of them by the end of the year, he added.

It’s also looking at further expansion in MENA: Sabry noted that Fawry is looking to expand its footprint to at least two other MENA region companies this year, without revealing where. Fawry had launched operations last year in the UAE with a partnership with Dubai Islamic Bank.

The firm’s expansion comes as fintech and e-payments join NBFS and healthcare as super-hot sectors. Fawry processes around 3 mn transactions daily and plans to increase its points of sales to 280k from a current 200k, Sabry said.

AND IT’S NOT JUST FAWRY as state-owned bank Banque Du Caire (BdC) looks at establishing an e-payments company in partnership with an unidentified foreign investor, Ahram Gate quotes Chairman Tarek Fayed as saying in an interview. The move comes as part We’ll have more on BdC’s strategy in tomorrow’s EnterpriseAM.

Meanwhile, state-owned investment bank NI Capital is planning to make non-banking financial services one of three key sectors of its EGP 1.5 bn private equity investment plan this year, NI Capital MD Mohamed Metwally told Al Mal this morning. The other key sector? Digital media services, said Metwally without elaborating.

These activities place fintech and NBFS in a heated battle with healthcare as the hottest sectors in Egypt at the moment. We noted yesterday how Speed Hospitals — a subsidiary of diagnostics and healthcare firm Speed Medical — is looking to acquire a 100% stake in Six of October’s New Al Safwa Specialized Hospital ahead of a possible IPO. This would make it the third major M&A in healthcare in as many months following the Cleopatra Hospital – Alameida merger late last year and the potential acquisition of Alexandria Medical Services by Mabaret Al Asafra Hospitals and Africa-focused investment firm Tana Africa Capital.

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