• The winning startup will receive the ALEC Innovation Award worth USD 10,000, while top startups will have the opportunity to secure pilot projects with program partners

Abu Dhabi: startAD, the Abu Dhabi-based global accelerator anchored at NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) and powered by its partner Tamkeen, has opened applications for its Corporate Sprint Accelerator program. Applications close on March 10, 2020.

Taking place from April 1 – 14, 2020 at NYUAD, the program will be focused on innovative solutions in the fields of construction and sustainable development. The accelerator will steer global startups specializing in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), and hardware technologies, to grow and scale in the UAE through potential pilot projects with startAD’s partners ALEC Engineering and Contracting, and the Consolidated Contractors Company (CCC). The winning startup will receive the ALEC Innovation Award worth USD 10,000. The program will also train startups in investment readiness, and all selected startups will be considered for co-investment of up to USD 250,000 through startAD’s Seed Fund.

Research Professor of Engineering, Vice Provost for Entrepreneurship at NYUAD, and Managing Director of startAD Ramesh Jagannathan commented: “The construction industry continues to play a central role in the UAE economy. Projects such as EXPO 2020 and the Neom Construction Project have led to contracts of USD 138.5 billion being awarded in 2019 with a growth forecast of six to ten percent in 2020. Nevertheless, global labor-productivity growth in construction has averaged at about one percent over the past twenty years, in comparison to a three to four percent in other sectors according to McKinsey and Company.

“Analysts expect that digital solutions can reduce construction project costs by 45 percent, which is a significant saving for the future development of the engineering and construction sector. Our Corporate Sprint Accelerator partners industry leaders with early-stage startups, enabling knowledge sharing that can create entrepreneurial innovations tailored to real business needs and enhancing the regional construction sector with new technological implementation.”

Since the first cycle in September 2017, the startAD Corporate Sprint Accelerator has worked with 112 startups from 24 countries. These alumni are creating significant impact globally having raised USD 45 million in investment, generating USD 15 million in revenue, securing over 50 pilot projects with corporations, and creating over 230 jobs.

For further details on startAD’s 2020 Corporate Sprint Accelerator, please visit this link.


About startAD

startAD is an Abu Dhabi-based global accelerator steering seed-stage technology startups to launch, develop, and scale their ventures. Anchored at NYU Abu Dhabi and powered by its partner Tamkeen, the accelerator equips startups to pilot solutions with industry leaders, while enabling corporates to innovate with startups disrupting their core businesses.

startAD has the unique domain expertise and state-of-the-art facilities to develop startups with a focus on hardware and AI, as well as other solutions in priority industries including aviation, energy, sustainability, construction, and security. Enrolled startups benefit from startAD’s extensive range of programs and global network of investors, mentors, and experts, in addition to access to startAD’s seed fund for local startups. Since startAD’s launch in 2016, participating startups have raised USD 45 million in investment, generated USD 15 million in revenue, secured over 50 pilot projects with corporations, and created over 230 jobs.

About Tamkeen

Tamkeen is an Abu Dhabi based company mandated to deliver projects to meet the UAE’s vision of knowledge-based development. Tamkeen works with a variety of local and international institutions to enrich the UAE’s social, cultural and educational landscape.

About NYU Abu Dhabi

NYU Abu Dhabi is the first comprehensive liberal arts and science campus in the Middle East to be operated abroad by a major American research university. NYU Abu Dhabi has integrated a highly-selective liberal arts, engineering and science curriculum with a world center for advanced research and scholarship enabling its students to succeed in an increasingly interdependent world and advance cooperation and progress on humanity’s shared challenges. NYU Abu Dhabi’s high-achieving students have come from 115 nations and speak over 115 languages. Together, NYU's campuses in New York, Abu Dhabi, and Shanghai form the backbone of a unique global university, giving faculty and students opportunities to experience varied learning environments and immersion in other cultures at one or more of the numerous study-abroad sites NYU maintains on six continents.

© Press Release 2020

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