Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala plans to initiate tech investments in Israel

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
Mubadala
Representational Image

Abu Dhabi’s state-owned sovereign wealth fund, Mubadala Investment Company is looking to initiate investments in high-growth technology firms and potential partners in Israel, according to a senior official.

In September, the UAE and Israel had normalized its relations by signing the Abraham Accord as part of the emirates’ aim to strengthen its economic and business ties with Israel.

According to Ibrahim Ajami, head of Mubadala’s Ventures unit, the state-owned investment fund is building an apt infrastructure in Abu Dhabi to support Israeli companies’ regional growth and the company is currently trying to identify potential funds and high growth opportunities to invest in Israel.

“There will be interesting opportunities with joint funds or joint ventures, but we are still early on in evaluating this,” Mr. Ajami stated at a financial technology conference in Abu Dhabi.

Even though the state-owned fund has already co-invested with Israeli investors in the US and Europe, it expects that the closer ties between the UAE and Israel open up a significant opportunity for investments.

In the past months, Mubadala has been increasing its tech investments. In March, the company partnered in a consortium that invested $2.25 billion in Waymo, the self-driving technology company subsidiary to Google’s parent Alphabet. It has also committed $15 billion to Softbank’s first Vision Fund and has its own technology funds in the US, Europe and the Middle East.

With more than $230 billion in assets, Mubadala is working to diversify its investment portfolio by offering funds for the technology sector.

“We are always excited about Silicon Valley. But we are also looking at Europe, we’re looking at the Middle East, we’re looking at India and we would like to be very active in China,” Mr. Ajami said.

Ibrahim Ajami
Ibrahim Ajami
Head of Venture Units
Mubadala

“2020 has been a vintage year for Mubadala. We have been investing in technology for many years and we set up our pillars and foundations in the right way that enabled us to have one of our busiest and exciting years. We invested in technology all over the world regardless of what’s happening on the global side, we are seeing the power of the tech platforms and we will continue to grow.”

Recently, the UAE has announced visa and business reforms aimed at attracting more expatriates to live and work in the country, after many left as firms cut jobs amid a severe economic slowdown caused by the coronavirus outbreak.

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