Dhahran: Saudi Aramco has allocated an additional $4 billion to its global venture capital arm, Aramco Ventures, the world’s biggest crude oil exporter, announced Wednesday.
It will more than double the capital allotted to Aramco Ventures, increasing its total investment allocation from $3 billion to $7 billion. The additional investment will also take Aramco’s overall venture capital allocation to $7.5bn, including the $500 million venture capital fund Wa’ed Ventures (focusing on the start-up ecosystem in Saudi Arabia).
Ahmad Al Khowaiter, Aramco Executive Vice President of Technology and Innovation, said, “By injecting an additional $4 billion in funding over the next four years, we intend to provide the financial backing required to take game-changing solutions to the next level.”
He added, “This will provide crucial impetus to businesses at various stages of development worldwide while also contributing to Aramco’s long-term objectives.”
Before the new capital allocation, Aramco Ventures managed three funds. These are a Digital/Industrial Fund, which stood at $500 million, investing in technologies of strategic importance to Aramco. Second, the Prosperity7 Fund, with $1 billion, invests in disruptive technology ventures beyond the energy sector. Third, the Sustainability Fund, which stood at $1.5 billion and invests in start-ups with the potential to support Aramco’s ambition to achieve net-zero Scope 1 and Scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions across its wholly-owned and operated assets by 2050.
The decision also reflects Aramco’s venture capital program’s growing significance in enabling the development of disruptive new technologies. In doing so, it aims to help advance the company’s long-term strategy, which includes a focus on new energies, chemicals and transition materials, diversified industrial businesses, and digital technologies.
“Innovation is key to addressing some of the world’s fundamental challenges today, including the energy transition. Through Aramco Ventures, we aim to support pioneers with big ambitions and ultimately help bring their ideas to life,” said Al Khowaiter.