Twelve startup accelerators and incubators from different countries of the Middle East & North Africa have announced a partnership to form a network of regional accelerators that will offer support and resources to their portfolio companies.
“This collaboration promises to improve the investment ecosystem through strong regional relationships, opening many doors for startups that need support outside their home country,” said the newly formed network in a statement to MENAbytes.
The accelerators that are part of the network include Falak Startup, Enara Ventures and EFG-EV Fintech from Egypt, Womena from UAE, Oasis500 from Jordan, Badir from Saudi, La Factory from Morocco, Tec.ly from Libya, Gaza Sky Geeks from Palestine, Level 1 from Tunisia, IncubMe from Algeria and Brilliant Lab that has operations in Kuwait and Bahrain.
To network claims that it is the first of its kind in the region, which to the best of our knowledge is true.
“It shows maturity in the MENA investment and entrepreneurship ecosystem, and that it is rich with resources to those who seek them. Before the partnership, it was difficult for early-stage seed investment funds to meet and build strong relationships with startups in neighboring countries,” the statement announcing the network noted.
Farah Ehsan, the Head of Programs of Falak Startups, commenting on the occasion, said, “The idea behind this initiative is to bring the region together by capitalizing on the success of each Accelerator/Incubator in their respective countries. We aim to work together on pooling our resources and facilities to bridge regional expansions and help all our startups grow faster.”
The accelerators and incubators that are part of the network aim to provide each other with access to relevant resources including service provider perks and soft-landing platform for all the startups in the accelerators’ networks. They also aim to support each other in terms of program content and share their network of mentors. Most importantly, the accelerators will offer (we don’t know the terms) office space to their startups when they’re overseas. So if a Falak portfolio company from Egypt is expanding to Jordan, they could be hosted by Oasis500 for their initial days perhaps.
The network will also be work together to collaborate on funding opportunities and deliver networking events.
It’s a good move but a lot depends on how it’s executed. But nevertheless, we need such initiatives to encourage collaboration and remove the disconnect among different ecosystems across the region.
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