Start-up accelerator Flat6Labs comes to Abu Dhabi

twofour54 signed a deal with Flat6Labs and United Markets International Holding to launch Flat6Labs Abu Dhabi, which aims to be a hub for entrepreneurs.

Flat6Labs, a successful start-up accelerator started by the Egyptian company Sawari Ventures, is setting up in Abu Dhabi.

Yesterday twofour54 signed a deal with Flat6Labs and United Markets International Holding to launch Flat6Labs Abu Dhabi, which aims to be a hub for entrepreneurs. Flat6Labs, which has hubs in Cairo and Jeddah, plans to open in other cities in the Mena region.

Flat6Labs Abu Dhabi said its aim is to help launch more than 80 companies in the next four years, with particular focus on digital content, e-commerce, social media and citizen journalism, media and video production, and mobile applications.

The primary focus of accelerators is to foster entrepreneurial talent by giving them funds, tools, knowledge and skills.

“Twofour54 and Flat6Labs share the goal of developing talent in the UAE and across the entire Middle East,” said Noura Al Kaabi, the chief executive of twofour54.

Hany Al Sonbaty, the founder of Flat6Labs, who was in the capital, said he hopes to inspire a new generation of entrepreneurs in the UAE business community. “Our mission is to create more entrepreneurial hubs in vibrant media ecosystems like twofour54,” he said.

“The programme is looking to have two cycles a year and more than 10 companies in each cycle. The programme will be six months long with an additional six months incubation after graduation.”

Flat6Labs said during the initial phase the companies that are accepted to the programme will get basic seed funding. Follow-on funding from Flat6Labs Abu Dhabi or other interested parties could also be available later.

Some of the successful startups to emerge from the Cairo incubator include Instabug, a tool that runs in the background of an app, allowing users to send their feedback or bugs instantly, and Integreight, which develops develops products for the electronic hobbyist and education market.

In July 2012, the former US secretary of state Hillary Clinton met Egyptian entrepreneurs whose ideas were being incubated by Flat6Labs, telling them that they were brave enough to take the risk of making companies out of their “new ideas, new concepts, new services, new products and new ways of organising”.

siyer@thenational.ae

Follow us on Twitter @Ind_Insights

Published: May 20, 2014 04:00 AM

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