Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates – Flat6Labs, in partnership with DisruptAD, the venture platform of ADQ, today unveiled the 10 new start-ups that have been selected for the fourth cycle of the flagship Flat6Labs Ignite program. These organisations, which were picked after a comprehensive selection process involving over 960 applicants from across the world, will now look to leverage the seed funding and world-class mentorship provided by the program to drive disruptive change in the region and beyond.
Launched in March 2021 as a partnership between DisruptAD and Flat6Labs, Flat6Labs Ignite is a specialised seed program committed to supporting start-ups in Abu Dhabi. Since Flat6Labs reinstated its seed program in Abu Dhabi in mid-2021, they have gone on to make investments into 37 start-ups with total funding of an impressive AED 33 million.
“Owing to the growing popularity and proven track record of our program, and the initiatives undertaken by the UAE government to establish the nation’s capital as a global hub for entrepreneurship, the quality of applicants for this fourth cycle has been truly impressive. The start-ups that comprise our latest cohort have demonstrated the potential to revolutionise their market segments. With access to our world-class mentorship program, as well as the ability to leverage start-up friendly banking services (through our partnership with Wio Bank) and avail of fast-track access to the UAE golden visa (through our partnership with Abu Dhabi Residents Office), these organisations will be primed for success,” said Ryaan Sharif, General Manager at Flat6Labs UAE.
In keeping with the overarching objective of the Flat6Labs Ignite program, a common trait shared by each of the newly selected start-ups is their focus on leveraging technology to drive disruptive change in their respective market segments. Of the set, seven are home-grown in the UAE, while the others were founded in Spain, the USA and Bahrain. As with previous cohorts and aligning with the government’s efforts to establish the Capital as a global entrepreneurial hub and centre for innovation, the three international organisations will now relocate their founders, leadership teams and core operations to Abu Dhabi.
The 10 new Flat6Labs Ignite start-ups operate in key market segments including Web 3.0 technologies, eCommerce enablement, EdTech and HealthTech. These start-ups are:
- Bazaara (UAE): A peer-to-peer marketplace for resale fashion. Touted as the 'eBay for fashion in the Middle East' the company enables customers to shop thousands of one-of-a-kind preloved and vintage items.
- Burger Index (Spain): This data, analytics and insights platform provides restaurants and hospitality brands with real-time market, competition, and consumer insights to accelerate informed decision making on new concepts, locations, menus, pricing, promotions, and trends.
- DesignHubz (UAE): As an Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality (AR/VR) innovator, the company empowers online shoppers to visualise products as they would in-store, thereby elevating their shopping experience.
- Growdash (UAE): A MarTech Solution-as-a-Service (SaaS) provider geared towards restaurant brands, the company helps restaurants build optimised growth strategies through data-driven insights.
- Growth Velocity Academy (Bahrain): The company is building a ‘metaverse for the education sector’ with the aim of enabling top universities and cutting-edge courses to go live virtually on the blockchain.
- Kinderly (UAE): An early years EdTech start-up that helps day-care providers enhance the quality of learning and engagement for toddlers, as well as their communications with parents and guardians.
- MNZL (USA): This PropertyTech marketplace provides borrowers with online, fast, and effortless access to the best mortgage options.
- Revibe (UAE): This marketplace for refurbished electronics differentiates itself by rigorously selecting suppliers and applying proprietary, automated quality control mechanisms to ensure customers can be confident of their purchases.
- Shaffra (UAE): Shaffra is a metaverse-as-a-service company for corporates and SMEs looking to enter the metaverse in an affordable manner.
- Takalam (UAE): An award-winning online counselling platform for mental well-being, that connects individuals and organisations directly with professional counsellors over highly-secure links for private and personalised digital experience using video, audio, and instant messaging.
“Given investor trends over the last year, we have deliberately selected start-ups that have the potential to radically transform the eCommerce, EdTech, and HealthTech sectors. These are also all focus verticals for the UAE government and once these organisations have established themselves as market leaders in the country, there is clear potential for them to then rapidly expand across the GCC,” said Sharif. “In doing so, they will help cement Abu Dhabi’s standing as the ideal incubator of global innovation.”
Flat6Labs is the MENA region’s leading seed and early-stage venture capital firm, currently running the most renowned start-up programs in the region. Annually, Flat6Labs invests in more than 100 innovative and technology-driven start-ups enabling thousands of passionate entrepreneurs to achieve their daring ambitions and ultimately becoming their institutional co-founders.
Flat6Labs manages a number of seed funds with a total AUM in excess of $135M. More than 25 leading institutions have invested into the Flat6Labs managed fund. Alongside investments, Flat6Labs’ start-up programs, executed to cater specifically to the needs of innovative entrepreneurs, help them accelerate their growth by providing them with a plethora of support services and connecting them to unparalleled opportunities with an expansive network comprising hundreds of business mentors, investors and corporates.
Launched and headquartered in Cairo since 2011, Flat6Labs has multiple offices across the region; with ongoing plans to expand into other emerging markets.