Abu Dhabi Global Market-headquartered Anghami, the music streaming rival of Spotify in the Arab world, successfully listed on New York’s Nasdaq with a bell-ringing ceremony on Thursday.
The listing followed Anghami’s deal with Vitas Media Acquisition Company (VMAC), a special purpose acquisition company, or Spac, set up in 2020.
Anghami has become the first Arab technology company to be listed on Nasdaq and the first Arab company to list on this market in more than 25 years, the firm said.
Founded in 2012, the ADGM-registered public company listed with the trading name Anghami (Nasdaq: ANGH).
ADGM will continue to support Anghami in the next phase of its growth story, said Ahmed Jasim Al Zaabi, chairman of ADGM.
“Anghami is set to become the first Arab technology company to successfully list on Nasdaq, which is a remarkable achievement. The approval demonstrates the vast opportunity for ADGM-based companies to tap into global capital markets to raise funds to realise their full potential,” Mr Al Zaabi said.
Anghami established its global base and research and development centre in Abu Dhabi last year, as part of a partnership with the Abu Dhabi Investment Office under the $545 million innovation programme.
Adio has provided Anghami with financial and non-financial incentives to set up at ADGM, in addition to helping the platform access the advantages of Abu Dhabi, including its strategic location, access to a competitive talent pool and established infrastructure.
“We have carved out a place not only in the industry, but also in the hearts of music lovers in across the region, with a 58 per cent market share,” said Eddy Maroun, co-founder and chief executive of Anghami.
“We look forward to continuing our mission to transform the music streaming industry worldwide by bringing fans and artists together to deliver a unique streaming experience with our focus on original, hyper-local content and an extensive catalogue of music and entertainment."
Dubai investment bank Shuaa Capital invested an undisclosed amount as part of a new funding round in Lebanon-born Anghami in January last year.
Commenting on Twitter on Thursday, Shuaa Capital's chief executive Jassim Alseddiqi wrote: “Anghami successfully lists on Nasdaq New York; the first Arab technology company to list on Nasdaq. Congratulations to the Anghami team and pleased for Shuaa Capital to be leading the listing and the round of funding."
Anghami’s music streaming platform has more than 75 million users in Europe, the US and the Middle East and North Africa region. It offers access to more than 72 million Arabic and international songs to stream and download, and about 200,000 Arabic and global podcasts.
Abu Dhabi is proud to celebrate Anghami's achievements “as it receives final approvals to list on Nasdaq … paving the way for it to become the first Arab technology company to achieve this monumental milestone”, said Mohammed Al Shorafa, chairman of the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development and vice chairman of ADGM.
“A true technology pioneer and regional success story, Anghami's drive for innovation and growth has enabled it to reach new heights, boosted by support from the emirate’s ecosystem … working as an integrated ecosystem, Abu Dhabi provides support and enables opportunities for fast-growing companies.”
Anghami has worked with several local label partners to build a comprehensive catalogue of songs from around the region and negotiate licences with major international labels.
“As we prepare for life as a public company, I would like to thank Abu Dhabi Global Market for its support in cultivating an environment that allows exciting home-grown Middle East technology companies such as Anghami to grow and thrive,” said Elie Habib, co-founder and chief technology officer of Anghami.