• Over 500 key socio-economic Kuwaiti and regional figures attend final ceremony and conference in Kuwait
  • Winners shared prize money pool of US$135,000

MIT Enterprise Forum of the Pan Arab region, with the strategic partner Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives (ALJCI) and the Zain Group, announced that, among 75 contesting teams from 15 Arab countries, teams from Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates made it to the winner’s stage at the MIT Enterprise Forum Arab Startup Competition for best start-up innovative and creative business ideas in the Arab world. The final winner’s ceremony was held at the Symphony Style Hotel in Kuwait.

The eighth edition of this competition received 4,275 individual and team applications (representing a record participation of over 12,000 entrepreneurs) from 21 Arab countries. The three tracks that entrants applied for are: Ideas, Startups, and Social Entrepreneurship.

Commenting on the winners’ announcement, Dr. Sarah Ghaleb, General Manager of Education Jameel, the Education and Training Initiatives at Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives said: “I extend huge congratulations to each and every one of the competition winners. The quality of the projects presented by all of the entrants was truly outstanding, and the winning teams and individuals represent a growing community of creative and visionary entrepreneurs in our region.  The prize money, as well as receiving the benefit of training, mentoring and media exposure, is sure to secure a bright future for our impressive competition winners”.

The highlight of the night culminated with the announcement of the MIT Enterprise Forum Arab Startup Competition ceremony that saw the following entities make it to the winners stage who shared the prize money pool of US$135,000:

Startups Track:

Winner: Colorbug – a Lebanese team based in the UAE that created an ideal solution that fuses the traditional with the digital whereby kids are encouraged to color books and then enhance their experience with augmented reality technology, to enjoy learning in an interactive and entertaining way.
2nd place: Project IO – a Jordanian based team that developed a technology to resolve the problem of shopping for shoes online whereby the user scans their foot with a smartphone to know their size for that particular brand of shoes.
3rd place: Screen DY – a Moroccan based team that developed a platform to offer any mobile developer to build complex, custom and native apps that work on all platforms within days

Ideas Track:

Winner: Kotobna–Egyptian based team that gives young talented Arab authors an alternative method to publish and monetize their work (novels, comics, articles collections, blog collections and research papers
2nd place: Concure – a Saudi Arabian team that has developed a proof of concept prototype that is a multi-layered blanket for use in curing concrete, whereby the product absorbs water easily, lies flat after initial setting and is reusable
3rd place: Nano Ebers – an Egypt based team that has developed a high honey concentration and nanofiber structure that enhances antimicrobial effect and promote moist wound healing

Social Entrepreneurship Track: (3 equal winners)

Visualizing Impact –a Lebanese entity that is a citizen data journalism laboratory that deploys data science, design and technology for social justice.
La Perle de la Mer – A Moroccan based entity whose project aspires to ensure the healthiness and safety of the products through the establishment of purification plant that will allow marketing for products in different markets directly and will allow fishing permanently.
Tahrir Academy – An Egyptian based entity offering a blended learning platform that provides engaging learning experiences to Egyptian youth, through combining world class and carefully localized teaching methods with the latest tools of technology

Apart from the winner’s prize money, each of the Ideas, Startups, and Social Entrepreneurship tracks semi-finalists benefitted from top tier training, mentorship, coaching, media exposure, and great networking opportunities throughout the competition.

Widely known as MIT, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is recognized for being one of the leading universities in the world, earning a reputation as a key player in the advancement of the digital age. MIT focuses on better equipping students with the right tools to transform technological ideas into successful businesses across many academic fields.

Founded in 2005, the MIT Enterprise Forum (MITEF) of the Pan Arab Region is one of the 28 worldwide chapters of the MITEF Global, an avid promoter of innovation worldwide, engaging aspiring entrepreneurs in mentorship and networking.

For more information on the MIT Enterprise Forum Arab Startup Competition semi-finalista and winners, please visit www.mitarabcompetition.com.

Note to Editors:

About MITEF Pan Arab: Founded in 2005, the MIT Enterprise Forum of the Pan Arab Region (www.mitefarab.org) is one of the 28 worldwide chapters of the MIT Enterprise Forum Global, an avid promoter of entrepreneurship and innovation worldwide. The MIT Enterprise Forum- Pan Arab has a proven record in promoting MIT-style entrepreneurship by organizing each year the MIT Enterprise Forum Arab Startup Competition (www.mitarabcompetition.com), in partnership with Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives (www.aljci.org), targeting 21 countries of the Arab region and bringing in more than 5,000 applications a year.

About Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives: In 2003 Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives (ALJCI) was formally established as the Corporate Social Responsibility arm of the Abdul Latif Jameel Group, one of the largest independent distributors of Toyota vehicles in the world. Today ALJCI operates a considerable set of initiatives.  From individual, community and Arab life as a whole in Saudi Arabia and beyond, ALJCI has the welfare of its people at heart. By promoting Arab arts and culture in the Middle East and around the world, working against the unemployment, enabling research for poverty alleviation, and providing education and training opportunities, ALJCI has successfully promoted positive economic sustainability.  ALJCI supports and partners with global institutions, which employ hundreds of people, all aiming to provide people with op­portunities and training in Job Creation; Global Poverty Alleviation; Arts and Culture; Education and Training; Health and Social. For further information, please check www.aljci.org

About Zain Group: Zain is a leading telecommunications operator across the Middle East and Africa providing mobile voice and data services to over 44.3 million active customers as of 31 December, 2014. With a commercial presence in 8 countries, Zain operates in: Kuwait, Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan and South Sudan. In Lebanon, the Group manages ‘touch’ on behalf of the government. In Morocco, Zain has a 15.5% stake in ‘INWI’, through a joint venture. Zain is listed on the Kuwait Stock Exchange (stock ticker: ZAIN).For more, please email info@zain.com  or visit: www.zain.com; www.facebook.com/zain; www.twitter.com/zain; www.youtube.com/zain; www.instagram.com/zaingroup; www.linkedin.com/company/zain