54 hours challenge to build 8 startups in Ras Al Khaimah

In the presence of Sheikh Mohammed bin Kayed Al Qasimi, Chairman of Ras al-Khaimah Department of Economic Development, DED, the first startups incubator in Ras Al Khaimah was inaugurated last Thursday at Julfar Towers, Ras Al Khaimah Incubator and Accelerator, which focuses on innovation and technology.

Entrepreneurs have the choice to register their companies with DED and establish a local company or register with Ras Al Khaimah Economic Zones, RAKEZ, and own a free zone entity.

The announcement was made during "Startup Weekend Ras Al Khaimah 2017" which was held at Ras Al Khaimah Incubator and Accelerator.

The event hosted more than 100 entrepreneurs from the UAE and the region, all competing on a 54 hours challenge (No Talk All Action) to build 8 startups.

"When we talk innovation, we have to talk about incubation," Dr. Abdulrahman Al Shayeb Al Naqbi, DED Director-General, said.

The Incubator and Accelerator aims to register 40 companies 10 Emirati and 20 local and 10 international start-ups. The next step is a tourism accelerator through different initiatives.

Three winners were also announced on the occasion. The Green Coin Team took the first place, and will be incubated at Incubator and Accelerator. "Over 54 hours we managed to create a functioning app, an actionable business model all with a killer team from our Dubai based company "AGAR Dev". We have a new startup! This all started from a challenge given to us by RTA representative at GITEX," Alex Rigaud, Team Leader, said.

Second place went to an Emirati team from Ras al-Khaimah. The team won an award for designing a prototype for a practical mug using Internet of Things to heat coffee, keep water cold, charge mobile phones and work through a mobile app. "If you don't try and fail, you will never learn. This was an unmatched experience. I came with an idea to start an online bazar and then joined the smart moka team. During the weekend, we had a product, logo, marketing plan and business plan. All within hours! We plan to continue working with RAK Incubator and Accelerator to come up with innovative startups," said Ali Al Taniji from the team.

RamyJallad, CEO, RAKEZ commented, "We’re very proud to be an integral part in encouraging and launching startups from Ras al-Khaimah, and we are thrilled about collaborating with Incubator and Accelerator to bring the Startup Weekend event to the emirate. This presents a great opportunity for aspiring home-grown talents and entrepreneurs, to tap into mentorship and funding, helping them realise their dreams."

Dr. Hisham Safadi, Co-Founder and CEO, Ras Al Khaimah Incubator and Accelerator said, "This is a true partnership between public sector represented by DED and RAKEZ and a group of entrepreneurs to start an eco-system in the Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah."

"The idea started in Silicon Valley earlier this year, and was welcomed by the government of Ras al-Khaimah. Our soft launch was in April, and today we have 15 startups and early stage companies incubated before our official launch," Dr. Saif AlJaibeji, Co-Founder, Ras Al Khaimah Incubator and Accelerator, said.