Telfaz11, a Saudi Arabia based digital media company has received a USD 9 million investment from lead investor Saudi Technology Ventures (STV), with VentureSouq also an investor in the Series A funding round.
Telfaz11 is the creative force behind a number of successful YouTube shows popular for combining humour with local cultural stories, including Temsa7LY, Khambalah, Alkhallat, and Telfaz11 Top 5. The platform has gained widespread popularity and engagement for it's content helping it gain recognition as a leading digital voice of the Saudi community, and amass over 20 million followers and more than 2 billion views on YouTube.
Telfaz11 said it will utilise the funds for capacity building, to take the company to operational, programmatic, financial and organisational maturity; Telfaz 11 will look to accelerate revenues by growing its creative and advertising offerings to increase the rate of monetized content; and scale operations through a strategic expansion into neighbouring markets in the region.
“Since the inception of Telfaz11 in 2011, our goal has been to support the growth of Saudi’s entertainment sector by creating local creative online content that resonates strongly with domestic and GCC audiences. Saudi Arabia’s ongoing wave of economic diversification has unlocked a new era of entertainment in the country, opening doors to a whole new world of opportunities for local players like Telfaz11 and attracting tremendous investor interest in the Saudi market,” said Alaa Yousef Fadan, Chief Executive Officer, Telfaz11.
“Having such leading partners on board will allow us to benefit from their extensive knowledge and expertise and provide a significant boost to our creative output and production capabilities. In our pursuit to become the definitive media technology company for the social age, these investments will help accelerate our long-term growth plans, as we channel the funds towards expanding our team and exploring new platforms and verticals,” Fadan added.
“We believe the digital and entertainment ecosystems in Saudi Arabia are ripe for disruption and can unlock value on a regional level. Investing in Telfaz11 will further strengthen our commitment to investing in digital media trailblazers that are shaping the future of the Kingdom’s digital landscape through innovation and ambition,” said Waleed Alballaa, Partner, STV.
“VentureSouq believes that home-grown companies with Saudi DNA will drive the Kingdom’s transformation from an industrial-based to a knowledge and technology-based economy. As the country moves full steam ahead to realize its digital potential, we believe that investing in companies like Telfaz11 that are capable of realizing and scaling their growth ambitions is once-in-a-generation opportunity. We are looking forward to working closely with the Telfaz11 team to align our strategic goals and help the network grow their reach and expand their offering through new avenues,” said Maan Eshgi, Partner, VentureSouq.
Telfaz11 was listed among the top 50 startups in Saudi Arabia in 2016 by Forbes Middle East, and has screened three of its short films at Paramount Studios to a number of top Hollywood executives and actors as part of the Saudi Film Days festival. In May, the company will be screening short films at the Cannes Film Festival where it will be representing Saudi filmmakers along with the Saudi Film Council.