A group comprising US-based Cisco, the European Investment Bank (EIB) and Riyada Enterprise Development (RED), a member of UAE private equity firm Abraaj Group, has launched a $50m Lebanon Growth Capital Fund, which seeks to provide long-term capital and institutional support to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Lebanon.

The fund will focus on businesses in the information technology, media, and healthcare and services sectors.

“The Ministry of Economy and Trade, as well as the Lebanese government as a whole, consider SMEs to be a crucial part of the economy and a vital catalyst to growth and development. By developing a structured approach to support SMEs through multiple initiatives, the Lebanese government is playing an important role in the growth and development of SMEs,” says Nicolas Naha, economy and trade minister.