Are you building a startup and want to share your story? Do you have tips for entrepreneurs, or insights to MENA industries? Submit your article with a photo and we'll get in touch with you.
Photo format: 800 x 491 pixels.
The NU TechSpace Blockchain incubator is about to start with its first round of 10 startups, offering up to EGP 150,000 in funding.
Cairo-based Blockchain incubator Nile University (NU) TechSpace has just announced that it will start its first round of 10 startups out of 34 applicants by April 21st.
Their criteria for selection is the uniqueness of the idea, scalability of the project, prototype, potential market size, market needs, and feasibility of product. They are willing to provide up to EGP 150,000 operational fund for each startup in addition to $120,000 IBM Bluemix Cloud Platform. The applicants will attend product, operational, and human resource management sessions as well as sales and scaling strategies sessions.
NU TechSpace also provides the 10 startups with co-working space at NU, El-Sheikh Zayed Campus, with access to campus facilities. Startups could also have access to extensive business training by NU faculty members and industry experts.
“Blockchain will endorse the use of financial technology applications in Egypt for efficient and cheaper financial services, payment systems and e-commerce,” NU TechSpace’s PR and Partnership Specialist Mariam Yassin tells Startup Scene.
Yassin explains that about 2 billion people are unbanked around the world, mostly living in Africa and Asia. “Funds from overseas are vital to support the poverty-stricken, with family members frequently moving overseas to earn money to send back hard earned cash to loved ones,” Yassin says. “While the money certainly helps, the remittance costs are astronomical and to an average family in the poorest parts of the world, the remittance cost itself would likely support a family for a week.”
Blockchain technology would also help in crowdfunding, making it possible and easier to keep track of invested money in fundraisers. It could help trace appropriate investment opportunity and decide, relatively freely, how much to invest, but also be involved in the development process of a project or company.
Healthcare would also make practical use out of Blockchain, according to Yassin. “Storing of patient information on a distributed ledger doesn’t sound particularly appealing,” she argues. “[Blockchain] would certainly save the healthcare sector an enormous amount of money that could be better spent elsewhere.”
The technology is also very crucial for cyber security. Hackers have been able to access private sector and governmental databases to gain access to personal information and use this information for their own interests. Blockchain should be able track the hackers and combat their attempts.
Users are panicking about the Blockchain intervention, and how it would presumably make way for smoother thefts and forgery; but Yassin begs to differ. “With blockchain tech, it would be almost impossible to modify information and create fake identities without permission,” she argues.
Find out more about the launch here.
Sign up for the daily Startup Digest.