Hub71 announces UAE national winners to participate in the Entrepreneurship World Cup 2020 Finals in Saudi Arabia

Published by Hub71 on

  • From 128 applicants, Hub71 has announced three UAE national winners following a stringent selection process formed by 10 judges from across the UAE including In5, Sheraa and Mubadala Investment Company
  • Hub71, the UAE’s National Organizer for the Entrepreneurship World Cup 2020, began its search for the UAE’s top startups in July and selected 10 finalists that formed ‘Team UAE’ and that came from seven different sectors including cleantech, agritech, edtech, big data and assistive tech
  • Founders applied from different Emirates, with 30% of the top 10 UAE Nationals. 

07 September 2020, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates: Hub71, Abu Dhabi’s global tech ecosystem and National Organizer of the Entrepreneurship World Cup 2020 (EWC), concluded its search for the best UAE-based startups by picking the top three: Pure Harvest, Key2Enable and Awecademy as national winners from 128 applicants from across the seven emirates. Startups were ranging from ideation stage to more established growth-stage tech companies. The winners of ‘Team UAE’ will represent the country at the Misk Global Forum between 18-20 October 2020, in what will be a global EWC Finals show-down.

Pure Harvest, Key2Enable and Awecademy all received $100,000 worth of in-kind prize awards each. These include benefits, discounts and free services from Stripe, Amazon Web Services, Hubspot, Segment, Intercom, Google Cloud and many more. Global finalists who are selected as one of the EWC 100 (top 100 global startups) will receive an additional $700,000 worth of in-kind prizes, resulting in a total of $800,000.

The Entrepreneurship World Cup is the largest global initiative for entrepreneurs with entries from 200  countries across the globe, attracting more than 100,000 applicants in its inaugural competition in 2019. To qualify for the National Finals, 10 UAE-based startups were shortlisted from a wide range of sectors and stages including cleantech, agritech, edtech, big data and assistive tech, 30% of which were UAE nationals.

EWC is hosted by the Misk Global Forum, Global Entrepreneurship Network and The Global Education & Leadership Foundation. It is supported by a range of global partners, including GSVlabs, TechCrunch, Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO), The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, WebCongress and organizations running EWC National Finals on every continent.

The winners now have an opportunity to secure prizes including $1 million in cash, additional funding opportunities, access to accelerator programs, resources, and in-kind prizes worth a combined $75+ million.

Ahmad Alwan, Head of Strategy and Corporate Development at Hub71, said: “We are very proud of all applicants that shared their tech ideas with us. Congratulations to Pure Harvest, Key2Enable and Awecademy, they will be competing on a global stage and we are confident that we’ve picked the best ambassadors to represent the UAE tech ecosystem. All 10 shortlisted applicants have unique and innovative offerings and have built quality businesses. This is testament to the UAE’s ability to attract, retain and nurture great talent and companies that will shape the future. We hope to see these startups continue to grow, and we welcome them to join us within the Hub71 community to benefit from our network of mentors and global market opportunities.”

Sky Kurtz, Founder and CEO, Pure Harvest, said: “Pure Harvest Smart Farms is pleased to have been selected as one of the winners among a terrific group of companies.  I would like to thank Hub71 and Misk for this honor, and to congratulate the other winners. Our vision is to make premium quality, sustainably grown fresh fruits and vegetables available everywhere.  We developed our tech-enabled agribusiness solutions right here in the UAE – tackling one of the harshest climates in the world. Pure Harvest is tackling societal challenges, including food security, water conservation, economic diversification & sustainability. It is great to be recognized for our work and serve as an Ambassador for the innovation and transformation currently underway in the Emirates.”

Raya Bidshahri, Founder and CEO, Awecademy, said: “We are honored and thrilled to be participating at the National level of the Entrepreneurship World Cup, and represent the United Arab Emirates. Now more than ever, the world needs innovators to tackle emerging challenges, and the EWC is doing an excellent job of showcasing these solutions. We are excited to use this opportunity to expand our partnerships and make a global impact.”

Jose Rubinger, Chief Commercial Officer and Co-founder, Key2Enable, said: “First, I would like to say a big thank you to the Hub71 team and EWC for this amazing opportunity. We are all responsible for the future of our planet, and it is very important that Key2enable will have the opportunity to represent the UAE because it shows that social impact startups are welcome in this kind of competition. We are here to enable People of Determination to thrive so, from now on, Key2enable will prove that sometimes the impossible, is possible.”

Team UAE startups are also automatically shortlisted for the Hub71 Incentive Program, which offers 100 per cent free housing, office space and health insurance for two years for seed companies and 50 per cent subsidies for three years for emergent companies; worth approximately AED 3 million (USD 800k).

To watch the finals, please click here.

Click here to apply to the Hub71 Incentive Program by the end of October to make the Q4 2020 cohort.