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Middle East Startup Accelerators and Incubators by vestbee.com
29 March 2024·8 min read

Agata Marcinek

Vestbee

Startup accelerators and incubators in the Middle East

Accelerators and incubators play a crucial role in jumpstarting startups and enabling their long-term success. Perhaps even fostering them to become unicorns, who knows? We've curated a collection featuring the most active startup accelerators and incubators in the Middle East region, offering detailed insights into each.

Kickstart Bahrain

Kickstart Bahrain offers acceleration programs, including edtech, fintech and generalist ones.

  • Who can participate: the programs are open to startups around the world at any stage that are in the sector of the upcoming cohort.
  • What is offered to participants: each program is a combination of weekly live sessions, self-learning, and assignments. Startups that make it to the graduation get to pitch their company to investors, receive a graduation certificate, and are eligible for free company setup, co-working space and other support in Manama, Bahrain.
  • Terms of participation: participation is entirely free.

Al Borg MedTech Accelerator

Al Borg MedTech Accelerator program is backed by Al Borg Diagnostics to support medtech startups in the MENA region.

  • Who can participate: the medtech accelerator program designs for the ready-to-invest and pilot-ready medtech startups. 
  • What is offered to participants: participants are offered a four-month incubation period with expert workshops, tools and guidance to provide healthcare services at reasonable prices. Also, the startups receive legal assistance from Al Borg Facilities & Labs to develop creative solutions benefiting society.
  • Terms of participation: the Al Borg Medtech accelerator program is an equity-free accelerator program, any eligible business can apply to the program on the website.

Flat6Labs Bahrain

Flat6labs is the MENA region's seed and early stage venture capital firm, running the startup programs in the region.

  • Who can participate: local and global tech startups from each sector. 
  • What is offered to participants: initial funding, strategic mentorship, office space, and workshops are provided based on entrepreneurship-focused business preparation and progression courses, specifically customized for the participating startup’s needs. At the end of each program, Demo Day will be held, where the startups will be able to pitch to potential investors.
  • Terms of participation: each of Flat6Labs’ programs has its own selection criteria, all of which are described here.

Techstars Tel Aviv Accelerator

Techstars Tel Aviv is an accelerator program designed to empower founders leveraging the power of AI, robotics, and advanced technologies.

  • Who can participate: Techstars accelerator program works with businesses working in multiple industries including consumer goods, consumer services, energy, healthcare, information technology, SaaS, mobile development, Big Data, IoT, e-commerce, 3D printing, AR, B2B Payments, beauty, healthcare, eSports, VR, cybersecurity, infrastructure and AI. 
  • What is offered to participants: the participants of the Techstars accelerator program are offered funding, guidance, and mentorship needed by them to make their business a profit-making success story. 
  • Terms of participation: all types of startups, working in most verticals, using any type of business models, can apply.

Nielsen Innovate

Nielsen Innovate is an early stage incubator and investment fund that specializes in retail, research, marketing and media technologies.

  • Who can participate: founders with innovative digital technology expertise, aiming to turn ideas into global ventures. Creative ideas for mobile, internet, or new media, combined with an innovative technological approach and a clear vision, are essential for participation.
  • What is offered to participants: the program offers startup mentorship, operational/financial/administrative support, strategic guidance, and investment as well as access to the customer network of Nielsen. Participants also have the opportunity to receive seed funding and follow-ons. 
  • Terms of participation: all eligible participants can get in touch with Nielsen Innovate via email mentioned on the website.

SigmaLabs

SigmaLabs is a startup accelerator program based in Tel Aviv. The program runs for 3 months with up to 8 startups, 3 times per year.

At the end of the program tenure, the accelerator reserves the right to invest up to $400K at a 20% discount based on the next round of valuation. 

  • Who can participate: the program accepts applications from pre-seed startups from all industries, ideally with 2 co-founders. 
  • What is offered to participants: the program is based on the deep mentoring model, where it provides personal experience mentorship. There are other benefits such as legal/financial consultation, free office space in Tel Aviv or Haifa for 4 months after the program, and access to top-tier seed funds in Israel, Europe, and the US. 
  • Terms of participation: a program fee of 2% Warrants exercisable into shares of the company according to the recent company valuation. And, the right to invest up to $400,000 in the startup’s next round of funding at a 20% discount to the terms set by your lead investor.

MindCet

MindCet is an investment fund and a startup accelerator for startups running in the UK and Israel. At the end of the program, all the startups have to go through a demo day, where they receive funding from investors.

  • Who can participate: early-stage startups working in the edtech sector are eligible for participation in this program. 
  • What is offered to participants: the accelerator program runs for 3.5 months, where all the participants have access to lectures, workshops, and group sessions on the GMT strategy, product development and much more. Also, at the end of the program, all the startups have a Demo Day, where they obtain funding from their investors. 
  • Terms of participation: There are no specific terms of participation for applicant entrepreneurs. They can get in touch with Mindcet with an application deadline, i.e. 10th August.

Brilliant Start

Brilliant Start is an accelerator program in Kuwait that invests in early-stage startups with a minimum viable product.

  • Who can participate: this program is intended for founders and early-stage teams that want to establish a footprint in Kuwait, Bahrain, and Saudi Arabia. 
  • What is offered to participants: the program offers support to businesses with up to $40,000 in funding, coupled with a 6-month incubation phase to facilitate market entry. Participants also receive guidance from legal advisers and enjoy 6 months of access to a coworking space, providing them with an environment conducive to business growth
  • Terms of participation: the applications are accepted year-round here, followed by a screening process. Selected entrepreneurs proceed to meetings and additional rounds for further evaluation.

Blossom Accelerator

Blossom Accelerator is the first female-centric entrepreneur and helps all female-led businesses grow in the MENA region. The program runs for 10 weeks in which teh startup gets the startup-building knowledge including idea generation, prototyping, business models, pitching, etc.

  • Who can participate: female founders who are looking to build their startup into a successful business in the long run. 
  • What is offered to participants: the program offers female entrepreneurs an opportunity to grow their businesses, where the program provides startup-building knowledge, idea generation, prototyping, business model, pitching and everything related to business development. 
  • Terms of participation: female founders aspiring entrepreneurs can participate in the Blossom Accelerator program. For further details, the startup can get in touch with the accelerator directly.

Faster Capital

Faster Capital is an online incubator and accelerator located in Dubai and working at a global level.

  • Who can participate: startup founders working in the fintech, edtech, healthtech, software, e-commerce, and blockchain industry can participate in the program. 
  • What is offered to participants: the program offers all first-time entrepreneurs support with idea validation, idea valuation, building proof of concept, project MVP costs, Market research, and Competitive analysis. There are other services included in the Idea to Product program. 
  • Terms of participation: there are specific packages available based on different business requirements. Additionally, the program takes 5% of the funding provided by VCs/investors during a funding round. Furthermore, the program offers a money-back guarantee, allowing startups to receive a refund if their expected results are not met.

Intelak Hub

Intelak Hub offers a Dubai-based eight-week acceleration and incubation programs, giving both early and late-stages startups growth and scaling opportunities.

  • Who can participate: Intelak Hub works with businesses working in different industries including aviation, technology, education, travel and tourism. 
  • What is offered to participants: it is an eight-week accelerator program offering startup growth and scaling business opportunities. The program also provides mentorship and access to networking platforms with investors and alumni. To date, 55 different startups got investments within the program. 
  • Terms of participation: currently, the applications for the startups are closed, but you can apply on the website when the applications start. 

DIFC Fintech Hive

DIFC stands for Dubai International Financial Centre and is one of the leading financial hubs for Middle East Africa and South Asia. The program provides a productive work environment to startups with an innovative accelerator program.

  • Who can participate: fintech, insurtech, regtech startups that create solutions for the Middle East, Africa, and South Asia region’s largest financial industry and insurance partners.   
  • What is offered to participants: startups can receive funding, and access to a network of retail, dining venues, dynamic art, culture scene and public solutions. The program also includes cost-effective licensing solutions and fit-for-purpose regulation for all eligible startups. The businesses also receive marketing and PR exposure, workshops and support from partner networks. Entrepreneurs also get access to different events and networking 

Terms of participation: follow the news on the website for the further program’s applications. 

Related Posts:

Best Startup Accelerators And Incubators In the USA, Canada and Mexico (by Sofia Drobychevskaya & Ilya Mikhalchyk-Kananenka, Vestbee)

Best Startup Accelerators And Incubators In Iceland (by Sofia Drobychevskaya, Vestbee)

Best Startups Accelerators and Incubators In Cyprus (by Aleksandra Woszczyk, Editor, Vestbee)



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