|04 August, 2019

Orange Jordan graduates six start-ups, welcomes five more to seventh season

Six start-ups graduated from the Business Innovation Growth (BIG) programme by Orange Jordan

Image used for illustrative purpose. Group of people sitting at meeting table with listening to manager.

Image used for illustrative purpose. Group of people sitting at meeting table with listening to manager.

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AMMAN — Six start-ups graduated from the Business Innovation Growth (BIG) programme by Orange Jordan on Wednesday.

CEO of Orange Jordan Thierry Marigny, Entrepreneurship Projects Manager Rabie Jammalieh and Communication Director Rana Al Dababneh congratulated the six start-ups and welcomed five new start-ups to the seventh season. The event was attended by Minister of Digital Economy and Entrepreneurship Mothanna Gharaibeh.

“We already offered supports to 37 start-ups in the last six seasons, so our first pride is that all the 37 companies, start-ups, are still alive,” Thierry said during his congratulatory speech, which highlighted BIG’s origins as part of Orange’s international corporate arm Orange Fab.

“They are survivors where statistically only 10 per cent of start-ups at this level, at this stage, succeed,” he said.

BIG’s sixth season showcased apps for education and monitoring fuel, a third-party deal providing service and artificial intelligence for customer assistance.

During the programme, each start-up received personalised mentorship, training, office space and a trip to this year’s VivaTech Summit in Paris in May as an introduction to Orange’s international business network.

“First of all, they show you what are the weaknesses,” Loay Hasayen, founder and CEO of the start-up iTank, told The Jordan Times about BIG’s mentorship services.

Hasayen added that his product — a wireless tank monitor that allows customers to digitally track fuel levels — went from prototype to a distributable product during BIG’s training.

Another one of the sixth season’s graduates, Books2ReadKids General Manager Emad Hbaidi, told The Jordan Times that his educational app allows Arabic-speaking children to gain literacy through interactive games and stories by local authors.

“Until now we have two stories. One more will be published in August and every month the content will be increased by one more story,” Hbaidi said.

As for BIG’s seventh season of start-ups, it targets markets that range from the entertainment industry to projects that increase environmental sustainability.

Rola Fayyid, participant for BIG’s seventh season, founded her start-up ViaVii after over a decade of experience in the travel industry. Her start-up offers tailored itineraries to travellers.

“No one wants to do what everyone else is doing,” she told The Jordan Times, adding that her start-up works with local communities to provide cheaper, more unique alternatives to the “typical tourist traps”.

In an interview with The Jordan Times, Orange CEO Thierry Marigny said that Jordan’s start-up industry has a “bright future”.

“I have the impression that Jordan is more and more connected to the right field and the right trends of the start-ups world, and I’m quite optimistic,” he said.

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