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11 Startups Win Grants Worth US$100,000 Each At The 2022 TAQADAM Startup Accelerator Showcase The event, which was powered by both KAUST and SABB, was attended by an in-person audience of investors, business leaders, and other entrepreneurs.

By Entrepreneur Middle East Staff Edited by Aby Thomas

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Business ideas from 23 startups were previewed by key members of Riyadh-based King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), as well as Saudi British Bank (SABB) during the 2022 TAQADAM Startup Accelerator Showcase on March 15, 2022.

The event, which was organized by KAUST and SABB, was attended by an in-person audience of investors, business leaders and other entrepreneurs. 58 founders from eight Saudi Arabian startups and 15 international ones, all from the seventh cohort of the annual six-month long TAQADAM Startup Accelerator program, presented their concepts and products in three-minute pitches. A global judging panel including investors from Sukna Ventures, Falak Investment Hub, and HALA Ventures, selected 10 final startups that received US$100,000 in funding each, while an eleventh startup was also selected by the online and in-person audience and was granted $100,000 as well.

Here are the 10 startups selected as winners by the jury:

  • Lablabee An interactive Telco Cloud skills platform, that makes learning more accessible and attractive for students and professionals.
  • Nqoodlet A spending platform that provides instant issuance to multiple payment corporate cards for team members.
  • Widebot A platform that offers the most powerful artificial intelligence (AI) engine for Arabic dialects.
  • Osool A digital partner that provides property owners with tools to manage their maintenance projects in one cloud platform.
  • Cubex An online marketplace for sea freight, using blockchain to connect buyers and sellers in an auction model.
  • Omniful A plug-and-play back-office solution that integrates with the software of the client and utilizes the existing resources to help retailers and dark-stores ship orders in two to seven minutes.
  • Mismar A platform that connects car owners with service providers to manage their maintenance, repairs, and spare parts needs.
  • Thya Tech An enterprise that delivers artificial intelligence-based computer vision as a service.
  • Shopi A retail platform that provides next-generation e-commerce solutions, connecting all inventory channels in a single place.
  • Swftbox A marketplace offering faster deliveries for e-commerce retailers by aggregating and crowdsourcing last-mile logistics.

Autlient, a computer vision platform that detects high-risk situations inside and outside vehicles, was the People's Choice recipient of a $100,000 grant.

The Autlient Team. Source: TAQADAM

Commenting on the showcase, Hattan Ahmed, Director of KAUST Entrepreneurship Center, said, "This TAQADAM cohort resembles a sample of the unique breed of startups in the ecosystem tackling white spaces with great creativity and passion- these founders are the driver for change and impact in the region and globe."

Meanwhile, Majed Najm, Deputy Managing Director of Corporate and Institutional Banking at SABB, said, "We're proud to continue our commitment to driving the future of Saudi -and global-entrepreneurship forward, and TAQADAM is one of the leading initiatives in this sector. This year's cohort was truly exceptional, and we look forward to seeing how these startups create new opportunities in the market and add value to the Saudi economy."

The completion of the 2022 showcase event also signals the start of the application window for TAQADAM's 2022 cohort, which is set to accept 60 startups into its initial accelerator program, with selected participants being eligible to pitch at the TAQADAM showcase in 2023. The program's participants will receive up to $140,000 in funding, mentorship access from industry leaders, as well as the opportunity to network with the MENA region's community of startups.

Related: How Saudi Arabia's TAQADAM Is Powering A New Cohort Of Global Founders

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