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6 UAE Startups Selected for Ibtikari’s 5th Incubation Programme

The programme will award grants worth 10,000 Dirhams, courtesy of the Khalifa Fund for Entreprise Development.

The Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development (KFED) and startAD, NYU Abu Dhabi’s innovation and entrepreneurship platform announced the six finalist teams to compete at the Ibtikari programme’s fifth cohort. The programme is a five-month incubation programme designed to help UAE-based entrepreneurs advance their tech startups. The six were selected out of eight teams that presented their business ideas during the programme’s pitching day held at KFED’s headquarters in Abu Dhabi. 

The finalists will advance to the incubation phase of the programme, where they shall undergo a series of customised training sessions, workshops, and one-on-one meetings with their Ibtikari mentors. The teams will also have an opportunity to connect with regional and global corporate partners, prospective clients and leading industry experts in an effort to help startups expand their network and develop their businesses. Moreover, KFEd will give the six teams grants worth 10,000 Dirhams, as well as 25,000 Dirhams for one of the finalists. The projects will also be evaluated and reviewed by KFED and startAD for possible further funding.

The finalist teams include:

Arabee: a fun and interactive multi-format Arabic language programme designed to teach Arabic to children aged 3-12 years.

Blanco Oral Care: an innovative and environmentally friendly toothpaste tablet in a glass jar.

Plexo Gaming: an online e-sport tournament platform that allows players in the Middle East to monetise their talents.

Snakat Café: a platform that displays, markets, sells and delivers home-cooked food and desserts.

Solar Smart Cell: a startup that designed and manufactures solar-powered smart vehicles.

SPL Technology: a platform that is designed to semi-automate cloud migration processes.

“Both KFED and startAD will continue to work closely with the six final teams up until the conclusion of the Ibtikari programme in February 2020. We will see to it that the Emirati finalists will receive the right support to ensure their success in the business world. We are glad to be a part of the Ibtikari programme in partnership with startAD, which, similar to us at KFED, aims to empower Emirati entrepreneurs and flourish a culture of entrepreneurship in the country,” says Mouza AlNasri, Acting Chief Executive Officer, KFED.

Through Ibtikari, KFED can continue promoting entrepreneurship, creativity, and innovation among UAE youth as well as boost the competitiveness of the Emirati-owned small and medium entreprises (SMEs). This initiative is in-line with KFED’s mission to help accelerate the growth of startups and SMEs as well as establish a promising and prosperous entrepreneurial ecosystem in Abu Dhabi and the UAE. 

During the pitching day, the eight participating teams presented their ideas to a panel of judges who evaluated the programme’s fit and the potential or scalability of each idea. The pitch day was held after an internsive week-long boot camp during which the teams were taught how to best present their business proposals. The panelists then provided constructive criticism to the participating teams and methods on how to advance their businesses.

The startAD organised programme is powered by KFED as part of its efforts to raise the efficiency level of startups and SMEs. KFED supports local entrepreneurs by showcasing their capabilities, providing them access to financing and funding options, and helping nurture the Emirati tech-ecosystem.


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