MITEF Startup Competition Concludes its Activities Under the Patronage of His Royal Highness Prince Faisal bin Salman
The MITEF Startup Competition in Saudi and the Arab world announce the Semi-finalists
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, February 24, 2022: Under the patronage of His Royal Highness Prince Faisal bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, Governor of Al Madinah Region, the closing ceremony of the Start Smart Conference, part of the MITEF Startup Competition in Saudi and the Arab world, was held with the attendance of His Royal Highness Prince Saud bin Khalid Al Faisal, Deputy Governor of Al Madinah Region. The event and its related activities took place at King Salman International Conference Center in Al Madinah and organized by Community Jameel Saudi and Bab Rizq Jameel.
In his speech, His Excellency the Governor of the Small and Medium Size Enterprises Authority, Engineer Saleh bin Ibrahim Al-Rasheed, said that the launch of Vision 2030 contributed to the Kingdom ranking first in the world out of 190 countries, in business environment reforms and the facilitation of business practice, according to the Ease of Doing Business 2020 report issued by the World Bank. The Kingdom also ranked fourth in the National Entrepreneurship Context Index (NECI) and first out of 44 countries in the government and entrepreneurs’ responsiveness to the Covid-19 pandemic, according to the GEM 2020/2021 report. The Kingdom also ranked second in the volume of venture capital investments in 2021, with an increase in the value of investments from 112 million to 2.05 billion SAR within five years. He also highlighted the Kingdom’s ranking in the growth of innovative enterprises, with Saudi advancing to seventh place according to the Global Competitiveness Report, with the number of small and medium enterprises continuing to rise despite the pandemic’s conditions, from 560,000 to 663,000.
The ceremony program included several speeches by the organising and supporting partners. In addition to, a documentary film on the history of the MIT Entrepreneurship Forum, and a visual presentation of Al-Madinah as an investment destination.
His Royal Highness Prince Faisal bin Salman bin Abdulaziz then honoured the nine winning teams in this exceptional edition that brought together entrepreneurs from all over the Arab world. The first-place winners in the Startups and Social Entrepreneurship tracks received SAR 188,000 ($50,000) for each team; the first prize winners in the Ideas Track received 56,400 SAR ($15,000). The second-place winner in each track received 37,600 SAR ($10,000) and 18,800 SAR ($5,000) for the third-place holder. The winning teams were announced as follows:
- Yanzo from the United Arab Emirates
- IFIN Services from Bahrain
- El-dokan, Inc. from Egypt
- Key2enable Assistive Technology from the United Arab Emirates
- Zelij Invent from Morocco
- Up-fuse.com from Egypt
- Holexp from Lebanon
- Torod from Saudi Arabia
- Hexafresh from Lebanon
Hussain Jameel, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Bab Rizq Jameel, said: “I am proud to witness the great support and sponsorship that benefited this year’s conference, held for the first time in Al Madinah, under the patronage of His Royal Highness, Governor of Al Madinah Region, and His Royal Highness, Deputy Prince of the region, and the support of the Ministry of Investment. I extend my appreciation to the participation of a large number of academics, experts, government agencies, non-governmental organisations, senior representatives of the private sector and investors in the MITEF Startup Competition, and for their support of the journey of Community Jameel Saudi Arabia, which aims to support the next generation of entrepreneurs by providing opportunities to learn and invest.”
The forum hosted by Al Madinah included the participation of more than 60 international startups from around the world and 60 innovative Saudi companies from the MITEF competition to attract local, regional, and international investors to Saudi Arabia. The forum seeks as well to contribute to the Kingdom’s broader economic ambitions, in line with Vision 2030, and to offer international startups from around the world a chance to expand their business in the Saudi market and meet Saudi investors while facilitating the entry procedures for these startups to compete in the Saudi market.
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