Saudi Arabia’s state-backed Jada Fund of Funds has announced its first foray in the private credit space, with a $250m (£197.5m) investment in private credit firm Ruya Partners.
Jada’s allocation marks the first close of Ruya’s private capital fund, which is on track for final close by the end of the first quarter of 2024.
Earlier this year, Jada announced that it had expanded its investment remit to include private credit, but this is the first time the company has allocated funds to the sector.
“This deal is only the beginning of Jada’s support for the local private credit market, with many more likely to come soon,” said Jada’s chief executive Bandr Alhomaly.
“Our new strategy reinforces our commitment to providing innovative and flexible funding solutions to promote private sector-led growth and economic diversification under the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.”
Ruya’s fund provides bespoke funding solutions to Saudi-based companies. Rashid Siddiqi, founding partner of Ruya Partners, thanked Jada for its investment and confirmed the company’s commitment to “providing non-dilutive private credit capital solutions to mid-market companies in situations where traditional financing is not available or accessible.”
“We are witnessing a renaissance in the Middle East, led by the significant support from regional sovereign wealth funds and institutional investors like Jada Fund of Funds that are empowering firms like Ruya to help mid-market receive flexible credit solutions to their growth needs,” added Omar Alyawer, partner at Ruya.
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Jada was established by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund in 2018. It was seeded with investment capital of approximately $1bn, and given a remit to provide funding to small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the kingdom.
It has previously made investments in the venture capital and private equity spaces.
“Our collaboration with Ruya Partners reflects our strategic vision to enhance the role of SMEs,” added Rawan AlJermawi, head of private equity at Jada.
“By supporting private credit investment funds, we contribute to the growth and diversification of the investment sector aligning with our commitment to impactful and forward-looking investments.”