Saudi Arabia’s futuristic city of NEOM launched a new accelerator program, Seven Senses, to support entrepreneurship in the NEOM and Tabuk regions. Launched by NEOM’s Social Responsibility Department, the program is designed to help SMEs, creative craftsmen, freelancers, and innovative businesses capable of bringing about change in the two regions.
Starting today and until May 14, the Seven Senses accelerator will receive applications from entrepreneurs and innovators who want to participate in an intensive two-day entrepreneurial boot camp that begins on May 28. During the boot camp, 150 entrepreneurs will learn several essential skills, including the basics of successful business, understanding customers, and how to pitch their companies to investors. Participants will also get to present their proposals to a panel of experts in order to earn their seats in the accelerator program, which will run virtually for 10 weeks—from May to August.
The Seven Senses accelerator program ends with a trial day in Tabuk, where participants present their projects and products. Entrepreneurs who successfully complete the program will get priority access to entrepreneurial opportunities in NEOM and get to take advantage of the available investment opportunities.
According to Meshari Al-Mutairi, Executive Director of Government Affairs at NEOM, “The idea of the NEOM accelerator program ‘Seven Senses,’ which was designed after extensive studies of the market reality, came to support entrepreneurs and owners of emerging companies in the regions of NEOM and Tabuk, through scientific and practical paths that contribute to developing their capabilities.”
The accelerator program is open to all sectors but particularly encourages individuals skilled in perfumery, pottery, jewelry, clothing, and skin care who are looking to build their own brand; freelancers in food service, new media, arts and culture, and public service; and SMEs in arts and culture, tourism, public service, food service, new media, and contracting.
The Seven Senses accelerator program will be followed by the launch of an educational training platform in Arabic under the supervision of local and international entrepreneurship experts.