Wamda, the Middle East region's leading startup ecosystem enabler, has invested in UAE-based eyewear e-commerce player eyewa, which has raised a pre-Series B bridge round of $2.5 million. The round was co-led by Wamda, EQ2 Ventures and Nuwa Capital. The investment is the company's third funding round.
Launched in 2017, the tech startup specialises in online retail of sunglasses, eyeglasses, prescription contact lenses and colour contact lenses. It offers a uniquely personalised user experience throughout the customer buying process and is now the largest online eyewear retailer in UAE and Saudi Arabia.
The investment demonstrates eyewa’s growth and scalability potential as well as investor confidence in its business model amid the uncertainty businesses face in the wake of Covid-19. The company saw its business double during the lockdown as many customers switched their shopping habits away from the malls and stores towards the convenience and safety of online shopping.
“The strong resilience and consistent performance demonstrated by eyewa’s founders and team over the past few months speak to the company’s immense potential to lead over the coming years. The founders’ response to the challenges posed by the Covid-19 outbreak does not fall short of efficiency and reassures our confidence in eyewa as a unique e-commerce platform that continuously seizes market opportunities and will only continue to grow and enhance user experience across the Mena region.” said Fadi Ghandour, executive chairman of Wamda.
The investment will enable eyewa to double down on the rapid growth of e-commerce in the wake of the pandemic and build new capabilities to further strengthen its position in the online eyewear space in the region.
eyewa co-founder and co-CEO Anass Boumediene said: "eyewa has seen exponential growth over the last year by making eyewear more accessible in our region. We offer a unique portfolio of trendy eyewear products at an affordable price and a great online shopping experience, solving a big pain point for our customers”
Mehdi Oudghiri, co-founder and co-CEO added: "These funds will allow us to accelerate our disruption of Mena’s eyewear retail sector through the implementation of innovative tech solutions, expanding our product portfolio and offering best in class customer service."
The total investment raised by eyewa reached $11.1 million over the past three years. Last year, eyewa was selected as one of the top 100 Arab startups by the World Economic Forum for its contribution to the region’s digital transformation.
Wamda also led the company’s Series A round of $7.5million in mid-2019, with participation from GS shop, 500 Startups and EQ2.