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Pitch Perfect: Hadafi Awards Three New Entrepreneurs In Its Fourth Season Hadafi is a free development program and competition that provides female entrepreneurs with training, finance and support to found an enterprise across the MENA region.

By Fida Chaaban

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You're reading Entrepreneur Middle East, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

Ten judges awarded three Hadafi winners cash prizes, business incubation, MBA scholarships from Synergy University, and a substantial mentoring package for their ventures worth over US$70,000 in the latest season of the program. On June 29, the Hadafi Final Awards Ceremony and Gala Dinner took place at the Ritz-Carlton in Dubai, UAE, with 11 shortlisted projects presented. Each project presentation pitch was followed by a question and answer session, to help determine the top three ideas. Hadafi's first place winner, the Egypt-based El Dactara founded by Nada Hamada, aims to improve healthcare info and access, while UAE-based second place winner Marian Al-Nahdi, founder of SnapChef, tackles on-demand human capital solutions for the hospitality industry. The third place winner, Kuwaiti Ghadeer Al-Shirazi, is the founder of Q8Reborn, a range of original one-off children's accessories and dolls. This year's candidates for the final selection were from across the MENA region, including the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, and Palestine.

Launched in 2013 out of Saudi Arabia, Hadafi is a free development program and competition that provides female entrepreneurs with training, finance and support to found an enterprise across the MENA region. Previous winners include Wardat Store, a KSA-based e-commerce initiative supporting the community by working with local craftsmen and shops, and MICEit.co, an events booking and management platform in MENA. If you're interested, application eligibility includes being a MENA woman aged 18 years and above who wants to launch a startup or has founded a business in the past two years.

Fida Chaaban

Chief Communications Officer, KBW Investments

Fida Chaaban is the Chief Communications Officer of KBW Investments, a privately held Dubai-based investment concern that works across multiple sectors. Prior to her most recent appointment, Fida was the founding Editor in Chief of Entrepreneur Middle East and Entrepreneur Qatar magazines. She is a big believer in the Middle East North Africa (MENA) region’s startup ecosystem, and endeavors to use both print and web to positively encourage development in various entrepreneurial spaces and across industries. Based in Dubai, UAE, Fida is a social media enthusiast and sees it as the medium of today’s effective enterprises.
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