Over the past years, the startup ecosystem in the MENA has witnessed some major changes; and since Flat6Labs’ launch 8 years ago, it has been taking part in this change through its continuous support for innovative startups in more than just one country: Bahrain, Beirut, Cairo, & Tunis. Through these programs, we have invested in 250+ startups over the past years, and 74 of them were in 2019 alone.
One of those 250+ startups is Harmonica, a conservative match-making app that got acquired by the internet giant, Match Group. It is actually the first MENA matchmaking company to be acquired. This acquisition also marked Flat6Labs first major exit, and while we were closing the exit deal in 2019, we’ve also launched the StartEgypt program in two cities: Alexandria and Assiut.
We believe our aspirations are just bigger than one year; however, as 2020 brings in both a new decade and a new year, it is about time that we dug deeper into all that we’ve achieved in 2019.
Flat6Labs growth rates have been exponential thanks to our programs, investors, mentors, and coaches across the region.
Our ability to expand into different countries and cities, has allowed us to reach more of MENA’s hungry entrepreneurial community, one that constantly seeks change, impact, and innovation. This meant that also as we grew, our networks grew and our startups ability to get funded increased significantly.
Flat6Labs has partnered with over 250+ startups across the MENA region in a multitude of industries since its launch in 2011. We truly believe in our startups, their teams, and in what they’re trying to achieve with brilliant products and services. We’re also proud to be their partners, hand-in-hand, throughout their entreprenuerial journey.
Nestled all over the MENA, are our programs that support and invest in startups from the idea, product and market stages alike. The tried and tested Flat6Labs programs cater for a wide array of MENA’s entrepreneurs. In 2019, we launched StartEgypt in two different cities: Alexandria and Assiut. We’ve also powered the Misk Innovation Startup Bootcamps in 5 different cities in Saudi Arabia, supporting a total of 90+ startups.
Our existence in these countries allows our startups to have access to different entreprenuerial and networking events where they can promote their services/products, pitch to investors, or take part in competitions.
The exposure and the network that our startups form at such events help them get funded, in turn allowing them to scale and grow and add new team members as illustrated. This helps the different economies of countries, as it translates into a higher chance at getting employed upon graduation.
Magnitt’s MENA Investment Summary of 2019 has also ranked us as the most active accelerator in the MENA region. With more than 80 startups graduating in one year around the region, and the number of investments we make into our graduating startups, we can’t see that changing anytime soon!
With the support of 20+ institutional investors all over the MENA region, we’re capable of pushing the our limits everyday and supporting more and more startups to grow and scale. We have over $45M in assets under management throughout our funds in the MENA region, from which we provide flexible investment ticket sizes that range between $50k — $300k.
Top 10 Things We’re Proud to Have Achieved in 2019
We’ve Graduated 21 Startups in One Month from Flat6Labs Bahrain (3rd cycle), Flat6Labs Beirut (4th cycle), & Flat6Labs Tunis (4th cycle)
We’ve Launched StartEgypt, a Flat6Labs-powered Incubator, in Alexandria & Assiut
10+ Ways Our Startups Were Amazing in 2019
After being accelerated by Flat6Labs and launching its application two weeks before Flat6Labs Cairo 9th Demo Day, Harmonica grew tremendously in 1.5 years to close an acquisition deal with the internet giant, Match Group. Simultaneously, we made our first major exit with a 16x multiple.
Having graduated from the Flat6Labs Cairo Fall 2018, Brimore has established itself as leading channel of distribution for small local manufacturers who want to sell their products. Them receiving funds of $800k signifies that.
After graduating from Flat6Labs Abu Dhabi’s Spring 2015 cycle, the laundry startup, Washmen, was already on a path to becoming one of the leading laundry services in the UAE. Aimed at revolutionising the laundry industry, the startup has been racking up several funds with their latest being a series B round of $6.2m.
Dabchy has grown to be one of Tunis premier online destinations for shopping after their graduation from Flat6Labs Tunis’ cycle one. This has helped them reach over 400k customers in one year, and secure $300k in a seed round led by 500 Startups and joined by Flat6Labs, Saudi Venture Capital Company (SVC), Khobar-based Vision Ventures and Daal, and a group of angel investors.
Chefaa has graduated from Flat6Labs Cairo Cycle 10 with a purpose of making medication easily available everywhere in the country through an application in a timely manner. The’ve been incubated by StartEgypt, then accelerated by Flat6Labs, and they’ve won several competitions propelling them to raising a six figure number led by Flat6Labs and 500 Startups.
The Flat6Labs Bahrian graduated from cycle 2, SINC, has raised US$250,000 in a pre-seed funding round led by Dubai Angel Investors and other prominent regional angel investors. The funds will be used in the short-term to expand SINC’s development team and build out the job tracking functionalities that small businesses in North America desperately need.
Bekia, an online platform that exchanges waste for services, and a graduate from Flat6Labs Cairo Fall 2018 cycle has raised a six figure number ($) through the Oman Technology Fund after partaking in their Wadi OTF Accelerator programme.
One of Flat6Labs Bahrain’s first batch graduates, Dalooni (formerly, Inagrab) was capable of securing an investment from Faith Capital. The startup specialises in monetising the everyday individual as a channel of sales for other businesses.
After successfully graduating from Flat6Labs Bahrain’s first cycle, the Stories Studio was capable of securing a $70k fund from angel investor Mr. Faris Algosaibi.
With an aim to help those with ADHD and Autism progress through VR learning, VRapeutic, a Flat6Labs Cairo cycle 12 graduate, was capable of securing a $70k fund after winning the SingularityU MENA Competition.
Rumman Enrolled in Ahli Fintech Acceleration Program
Built around the idea of saving money and allowing users to invest their money in either large or very small quantities, Rumman’s novel solution, had them become part of Flat6Labs Beirut’s program. After their graduation from cycle 2, they were also accepted into the Ahli Fintech Acceleration program. Joining this accelerator will allow them to have access to Al Ahli Bank’s customers, they might receive a fund of up to $300k, and they will get mentorship and counseling from Al Ahli Bank’s top executives, all to ensure that their startup is capable of growing and scaling.
Cloudsale, the Flat6Labs Beirut 2nd Cycle graduate, was capable of qualifying for the final Pitch By The Pyramids competition powered by Riseup Summit. Three other startups from Cairo (Makwa), Beirut (Zima Cloud), and Tunis (Seemba) were among the finalists as well.
Reform Studio joined the Flat6Labs Cairo Spring 2014 cycle with an idea that would help Egypt and the world at large recycle waste to form furniture. They have successfully done so by creating a fiber called plastex. They got them to do a collaboration with Ikea on their Överallt collection to help save the environment,
Speetra has joined Flat6Labs Beirut’s third cycle with a dream to make 3D-printed fashion items that are eco-friendly. This year, they have collaborated with one of the world’s most famous designers to create a sustainable 3d printed gown.