The Youth Climate Innovation Labs and Academy held an online demo day for 8 climate tech startups from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). The top 3 teams from the batch received total cash prizes of $6,000 and had the chance to attend the recent United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27).
The Youth Climate Innovation Lab and Academy, a collaboration between the UN Climate Technology Centre and Network (CTCN), SAFEEM, and Seedstars, is a fast-paced three-day event during which youth innovators from across the MENA region, with the support of climate technology, entrepreneurship, and business experts, were able to explore design thinking tools to ideate and validate innovative solutions for climate mitigation and adaptation within selected sectors and technology fields.
The three-day virtual hackathon successfully brought together 100+ young innovators from the region with a goal to help participants flex their entrepreneurial muscles, and by the end, create business solutions for enhanced climate action in response to climate change threats to the MENA region.
From the hackathon, 12 teams were selected to participate in the Climate Innovation Academy Program delivered by Seedstars, where participants received follow-on support to implement and scale their solutions.
A demo day at the end of the Climate Innovation Academy Program showcased the prototype solutions of the top 8 startups from the hackathon group. The participating startups were:
SWM (Iraq) - Offers a convenient and eco-friendly waste management solution in Iraq.
Sun Trip (Egypt) - Provides solar-powered electric bikes for rent as part of its mission to cut carbon emissions from transportation.
PTF (Lebanon) - A waste-to-energy solution that converts plastic waste into fuel.
Drive Green (Lebanon) - Provides a low-cost e-vehicle supply scheme.
Solar Geek (Jordan) - Reduces energy costs through an efficient and affordable structure of PV thin-film technology which can be used in large-scale and space applications.
YuDa (Egypt) - An agritech venture that offers vegan leather made from toxic agriculture waste
bio-Treasure (Yemen) - They transform organic waste into green energy and biofertilizer as a replacement for cooking gas for underprivileged Yemeni communities
Shams-i (Palestine) - Democratizes access to solar energy with its community-owned solar farm and innovative wheeling and offsetting schemes.
From the demo day, only 3 winners were selected to receive total cash prizes of $6,000. Jurors Chris Lyle, Head of Lebanon Advisory at CrossBoundary, and Adaeze Zita Edokwe, Senior Programs Manager at Seedstars, awarded BioTreasure, YuDa, and PTF the grand prize.
Winners YuDa and BioTreasure also had the opportunity to attend the recent United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27) during the program where they were featured as "The Next Generation of Climate Tech Entrepreneurs".
“Addressing climate change is not an easy task and it’s true that a number of factors and stakeholders must come together to solve it. But working with startups like the ones in our program brings a lot of optimism to the table,” shares Mohamad Fanous, Program Manager at Seedstars. “It’s amazing to see the youth doing their part, creating innovative solutions to help tackle mankind’s most pressing problem.”
For interested partners, investors, and mentors who would like to get introduced to the startups, reach out to Seedstars Program Manager Mohamad Fanous at email@example.com.
ABOUT CLIMATE TECHNOLOGY CENTRE AND NETWORK (CTCN)
The CTCN is the implementation arm of the Technology Mechanism of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, and is hosted by the UN Environment Programme. The Centre promotes the accelerated transfer of environmentally sound technologies for low carbon and climate resilient development at the request of developing countries. The CTCN provides technology solutions, capacity building and advice on policy, legal and regulatory frameworks tailored to the needs of individual countries by harnessing the expertise of a global network of technology experts and is committed to supporting the clean tech engagement of men and women, youth, and indigenous peoples and communities.
Seedstars is a Swiss-based private company with a mission to impact people’s lives in emerging markets through technology and entrepreneurship. The group’s activities cover over 90 emerging ecosystems through a variety of initiatives such as the FTxSDG Challenge, previously known as the Seedstars World Competition, which is the largest entrepreneurship competition in emerging markets; Seedstars Programs that are designed to support entrepreneurs in varying stages of growth via training, education, mentoring, and access to resources; Seedstars Academy, a talent incubator providing digital skills and startup-based immersive education; and Seedstars International Ventures, a global venture capital fund for seed-stage startups. For more information, visit www.seedstars.com.