DisruptAD, one of the region’s largest venture platforms, is partnering with Flat6Labs, MENA’s leading seed investor and the largest manager of startup programs in the region, to launch Ignite, a new start-up accelerator in Abu Dhabi that will support early stage companies with AED 120 million in funding and other benefits including office space and mentorship.
The program is part of DisruptAD’s broader mission to support and nurture 1,000 start-ups over the next five years and create a thriving local community of founders, fund managers, incubators and accelerators in Abu Dhabi. Ignite will be the first of many such accelerator partnerships for DisruptAD.
The launch of Ignite in partnership with Flat6Labs underpins DisruptAD’s long-term desire to maximize value creation and deliver long-term economic benefits for the UAE by seeding businesses that are technology pioneers and change leaders.
The program will run over a three-year period, investing in 20 startups every year. Applications for the first cycle will be open until 30th of April 2021, offering participating companies the opportunity to benefit from a seed investment worth up to AED 550,000, together with follow-on funding of up to AED 2 million. Startups will also receive tailored support designed to help them effectively scale and grow their businesses to become regional champions and ultimately global champions.
As part of the Ignite program, startups will benefit from opportunities for regional exposure and world-class mentorship through Flat6Labs’ international connections and top-tier coaching. These companies will also enjoy access to DisruptAD’s network and resources. The program will organize Flat6Labs Demo Days, support fundraising and business build out, and ultimately offer the full spectrum of support needed for start-ups to thrive and flourish in Abu Dhabi.
Ramez El-Serafy, Flat6Labs CEO, commented: “We are delighted to partner with DisruptAD for the launch of this three-year program. Flat6Labs’ presence in Abu Dhabi opens up exciting new possibilities, not only for this program but for the long-term evolution of Abu Dhabi as a global start-up destination. Together, we will harness our accumulated knowledge and experience to better serve the entrepreneurial ecosystem and create unique opportunities for promising startups.”
To find out more about Flat6Labs Ignite, please visit this link.
Flat6Labs, MENA’s leading seed and early stage VC, and manager of startup programs in the region, introduces a new streamlined visual brand identity and a new unified website. Given Flat6Labs expansive operations and impact across MENA over the past 10 years, the new brand identity is launched to ensure a consistent and enhanced experience for entrepreneurs, partners and investors alike across the region.
As part of the unified brand language, Flat6Labs will now be identifying its flagship VC-backed programs as “Seed Programs” instead of “Accelerator Programs”, while still offering ticket sizes ranging from $50K to $500k, supporting startups through their early journeys from Pre-Seed all the way to Pre-Series A stages.
Flat6Labs also manages a wide range of startup programs across the region, from bootcamps and incubation programs helping entrepreneurs spark and develop venture concepts, all the way to bespoke corporate accelerator programs in different industry verticals enabling startups to build prototypes, and helping them access their target markets.
Ramez El-Serafy, Flat6Labs CEO commented: “Launching this new and unique brand identity is far from just a visual change. We are streamlining our operations across all our offices in MENA, bolstering our efforts to support more innovative entrepreneurs, and laying the groundwork for exciting developments in our offerings to startups and partners that we will announce very soon.”
With an active presence in six countries, Flat6Labs has invested in more than 300 startups to date with a combined investment value of around $35M, creating more than 8,000 jobs across a wide range of industries. Flat6Labs is currently managing a number of seed funds with total assets under management (AUM) exceeding $45M, with more than 20 leading institutional investors and Limited Partners (LPs).
To download the new Flat6Labs brand kit click here.
Cairo, 24 February 2021 — Today marks the launch “Fighting Violence Against Women Using Technology” Hackathon on social media platforms. This hackathon is organized by StartEgypt powered by Flat6Labs in collaboration with the National Council for Women (NCW) and UN Women Egypt, recognising the significant role that entrepreneurship plays in providing innovative solutions to address societal issues. The hackathon challenge includes three key tracks: fighting cybercrimes against women using technology, combating forms of violence against women in the public sphere, and digitization of violence against women complaints and tracking mechanism with relevant government authorities. The hackathon will be virtually held in March in commemoration of the “Women’s Month”.
H.E. Dr. Maya Morsy, President of the National Council for Women (NCW), stated that “Addressing violence against women in all its forms is a crucial necessity and is considered a serious societal issue which harms women and girls, as well as their families and communities. All means and tools must be utilized to confront violence against women and pursue practical solutions to face it, while addressing the root causes”. “Technological advancement is a double-edged tool. Despite its role in creating new forms of violence against women, it has also become one of the most important tools that we can use positively and effectively to address this issue that has become a major concern for the entire society” Dr. Morsy added. “By launching this hackathon with our partners, we endeavor to pursue creative and innovative ideas that are in line with the times and challenges imposed on us, and contribute to working towards a society free from violence against women.” Dr.Morsy stated.
Ms. Christine Arab, UN Women Representative in Egypt expressed her pleasure in partnering with the National Council for Women and the Flat6Labs ‘StartEgypt’ program in launching this hackathon since it represents the consolidated efforts of the government, the business sector and the United Nations in providing opportunities for entrepreneurs to solve societal problems using technology. She added, “The COVID-19 pandemic has imposed a new reality on us, which requires finding innovative solutions using technological means to address violence against women in the public and virtual spheres. We also seek to use economic empowerment programs, especially the component on entrepreneurship, to build distinct partnerships aimed at empowering women on all levels. Greater economic autonomy for women results in their greater voice and leadership in the home and in public life. ” Ms. Arab also indicated that the Joint Programme between UN Women and UNIDO implemented in partnership with the National Council for Women and the Ministry of Trade and Industry, and with the support of the Government of Canada, will continue to provide an opportunity for innovative ideas that solve societal problems through entrepreneurship.
Mr. Hassan Mansi, Program Director of ‘StartEgypt’ powered by Flat6Labs, stated that “Egyptian women are not only one half of society, but also Egyptian women entrepreneurs have proven an unprecedented ability to succeed and compete at various levels. At Flat6Labs, we are proud not only of the nearly 40% participation of female entrepreneurs in our various programs, but also proud of the graduates who have been able to make a qualitative impact in their field, whether graduates of the StartEgypt business incubator, such as Salma Medhat, the founder of “Matkhafeesh” , an online application to fight harassment. We are also proud of Flat6Labs business accelerator graduates such as “Doaa Aref” who through her online application “Shifa” was able to provide a unique service to deliver medicine to chronic disease patients in Egypt, and attract investors to grow her business and help in her journey towards excellence.”
StartEgypt Program, supported by the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID), and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and managed by Flat6Labs, is specifically designed to inspire and support thousands of Egyptian entrepreneurs in the field of community impact. StartEgypt was incepted in 2017 and started its first round in June 2018.
The Hackathon’s jury includes representatives from the National Council for Women, UN Women Egypt Country Office, the Economic Council of the British Embassy in Cairo, and StartEgypt Program. Three teams will be selected to win Hackathon cash prizes for a total of EGP 20,000. In addition, the winning teams will be hosted in the business incubator of the StartEgypt Program to receive the appropriate training and guidance to develop their projects.
The “Fighting Violence Against Women Using Technology” hackathon is a digital competition that targets young male and female entrepreneurs that offer digital solutions that could help society in facing various forms of violence against women and girls, whether virtual (cyber harassment, extortion, etc.) or in public and private places (sexual harassment, domestic violence, female genital mutilation, etc.).