Darwazah Center's Startup Accelerate Demo Day Sees Winners Address Problems Specific To The Lebanese Economy

Held under the theme "Think Global Build Local," the event saw eight teams pitching their business ideas that could tackle problems specific to the country as well as solutions to substitute trade imports and encourage more exports.

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Lebanon-headquartered Darwazah Center for Innovation Management & Entrepreneurship (DCIME) held the Demo Day of the eighth cycle of its annual flagship program Darwazah Startup Accelerate on December 3, 2021. 

Darwazah Center

Held under the theme “Think Global Build Local," the event saw eight teams pitching their business ideas that tackle problems specific to the country, as well as solutions to substitute trade imports and encourage more exports. The Demo Day comes at the end of the three-month-long accelerator program, which aims to nurture and support entrepreneurship among the Lebanese youth.

Two startups shared first place in the results. The first was Cedar’s Chemicals, a startup that produces solid and liquid fertilizers using 70% local raw materials, which received a cash prize of US$10,000. Also receiving the same amount as a prize was the second first-place winner Nutri 3, a startup that provides three meals in a jar using local organic ingredients.

Two teams were also announced second-prize winners and received a cash prize of $1,000 each. The first of these was Sheavera, which developed a naturally made toxin-free skin moisturizing product. The other startup in second place was LebAid, a blockchain-based platform that directly links crowdfunding donors to the beneficiaries that are most in need or highly vulnerable.

Winners of the Darwazah Startup Accelerate 2021 Demo Day. Source: Darwazah Center

All the winners of Darwazah Startup Accelerate 2021 will also receive access to Venture Acceleration Practicum, a program curated by the Beirut-based Olayan School of Business (OSB-AUB) to help startups accelerate their ideas while receiving validation from Darwazah Center. 

The event saw keynote speeches from Dr. Bijan Azad, the Director of the Darwazah Center and Associate Professor at OSB-AUB, as well as Dr. Yusuf Sidani, Dean and Professor of Leadership & Business Ethics at OSB-AUB. H.E. Mazen Darwazah, Senator of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and Executive Vice Chairman and President of Hikma Pharmaceuticals also provided some of his business insights at Demo Day. A major point emphasized by all speakers was the need to mobilize resources and opportunities to enable greater recognition of local entrepreneurial talent, while also touching upon how the Darwazah Center provides state-of-the-art technology and facilities to achieve the same. 

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