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Sharjah Entrepreneurship Centre Launches $250,000 Middle East & Africa Challenge

The two-track programme is on the lookout for healthtechs and foodtechs creating solutions in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Sharjah Entrepreneurship Center, aka Sheraa, has announced the launch of a Middle East and Africa startup challenge, with a $250,000 prize awaiting. Under the name UCAN, the programme will seek startups and entrepreneurs who are creating tangible solutions for the global challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Participants are required to have a fully-developed product or minimum viable product, and be looking to expand regionally. Split into two tracks, ‘Healing the World’ (healthtech) and ‘Feeding the Future’ (foodtech),  one winner will be chosen from each and receive $100,000, with runners-up receiving $25,000.

The challenge comes off the back of Sheraa launch of a $1 million solidarity fund to support startups impacted by the pandemic in May, through a number of channels, including grants, commissioned projects and competitions.

“UCAN (which stands for Ubuntu Care And Nurture) reinforces Sheraa’s commitment to fostering a vibrant culture of impactful entrepreneurship," CEO of Sheraa, Najla Al Midfa, said of the new competition. "We want to support startups whose unique healthtech and foodtech solutions are meeting the urgent needs of not just the communities they serve, but the world at large. These talented changemakers are everywhere, and we aim to ensure they have a platform that elevates the impact they’re making.”

Applications are now open, until October 21st. To apply, click here.

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