Meet The Women-Led Startups Part Of Womena's First Cohort Of Womentum

Womentum is an early-stage accelerator program devised by the Womena team to achieve gender diversity and inclusion in the MENA region's entrepreneurship ecosystem, by supporting female-founded startups.

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Womena, a Dubai-based women-focused angel investment group, has announced selection of the top 10 female-led tech startups for the first cycle of their Womentum accelerator. Womentum is an early-stage accelerator program devised by the Womena team to achieve gender diversity and inclusion in the MENA region's entrepreneurship ecosystem, by supporting female-founded startups. Since its launch in March, Womena says it received 174 applications from female founders from across the region belonging to 34 nationalities, heading startups that cover a wide range of industries- from education to healthcare, F&B, environment, art, fashion, and more.

Commenting on the shortlisting process and the search for women-led startups, Christina Andreassen, Womentum Program Manager, says, "we were looking for early-stage startups that were Middle East focused, had at least one female founder, and had an innovative tech product addressing a large and growing market." The team's commitment to the business, and a product "more or less ready to be launched on the market" were also other criteria they looked for. "This process has made it abundantly clear that the region holds a wealth of talented female leaders and we were proud to see women leading companies in verticals as diverse as edutech to health tech, nanotech and construction tech. This diversity is reflected in our selection of Womentum's final cohort, and we can't wait to present these startups at our final demo day in October," she adds.

Powered by Impact Hub Berlin, sponsored by Latham & Watkins, and in partnership with the TECOM Group, the four-month accelerator program will run from July 1 to October 14, during which the program will have two phases- a two-week bootcamp in Berlin, and another two-week camp in Dubai. As for the program's objectives, Andreassen says the startups can expect guidance in refining their business model, improving technical strength, and be "100% investor ready" by the time they pitch their solutions at a demo day in October. The demo day is expected to take place on October 14, and is being planned in conjunction with GITEX tech festival. "In addition, a web series will be broadcast alongside the program, which should expose startups to a wide audience of potential customers and investors," says Andreassen.

Meet the 10 female-led tech startups all set to be part of Womentum's first cohort:

1. X Pay (Egypt) – A cashless payments solution utilizing blockchain technology.

2. Seabex (Tunisia) – A smart monitoring system of environmental data using AI to help farmers.

3. Sadeed (Jordan) - An AI-powered tool used to manage and respond to public comments on social media platforms.

4. We Share Property (UAE) - An integrated platform that makes real estate investments affordable for investors.

5. Mrayti (Jordan) - A mobile salon operations management platform for both customers and stylists in the Arab world.

6. Mathaqi (Saudi Arabia) – An on-demand platform for delivery of home cooked meals.

7. Zelij (Morocco) – A sustainability startup turning plastic waste into building materials.

8. Jaazi (Saudi Arabia/UAE) - An employee support tool aiming to correct disengagement in the workplace.

9. Furnwish (Egypt) – An immersive augmented reality tool to help users shop for furniture and home decor.

10. Humanitas (Jordan) - The company's mobile video app Dandi enables organizations and youth to collaborate on local community issues.

Related: The Recap: Achieving Women Forum 2018

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