American University Of Beirut Organizes Hackathon To Find Cryptocurrency Solutions To Lebanon's Hyperinflation Crisis

A 48-hour hackathon was organized by the Darwazah Center for Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship, in partnership with i-Park and Beirut Digital District, at the American University of Beirut's Olayan School of Business.

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Four startup ideas aimed at utilizing blockchain and cryptocurrency to aid the Lebanese economy were declared the winners of a 48-hour hackathon organized by the Darwazah Center for Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship, in partnership with i-Park and Beirut Digital District, at the American University of Beirut's Olayan School of Business.

Darwazah Center for Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship (DC)

Divided into six teams, the participants received lectures, workshops, and mentoring by experts in the field in order to design, develop, validate, pivot and take their idea closer to launching within 48 hours.

The judging committee consisted of Harry Halpin,Research Scientist at MIT, crypto legal advisor Fatemeh Fannizadeh, Sami Kteily, Executive Chairman of PEB Group, Avalanche engineer Gabriel Cardona, and Masoud Sakkijha, Associate VP at Pricewaterhouse Coopers.

    The CrypLock team, who bring trustless operations to over the counter crypto transactions via a digital escrow.

    They selected the following four startups as the winners:

    • CrypLock, which brings trustless operations to over the counter crypto transactions via a digital escrow
    • Cash2Coin, which makes crypto transactions as easy as ATM operations via stablecoins
    • Walleti-Increase, which works on mass market adoption of crypto by offering pre-paid crypto scratch cards and an app
    • D-Bank, which enhances SME reputation building via blockchain-based networks

    The four winners received $15,000 offered by the gold sponsor Avalanche, $10,000 offered by the silver sponsor NYM Technologies, $5,000 offered by the bronze sponsor L1 Digital, and $1,000 offered by NYM Technologies, respectively.

    "I am a biology undegrad doing my masters in business analytics," said Nour El Saadi, whose CrypLock team won the first prize. "The hackathon pushed me way beyond my comfort zone allowing me to dive into the world of cryptocurrency, while being mentored by top notch global players just within 48 hours."

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