Dubai, United Arab Emirates - Tuesday, October 21st 2014 [ME NewsWire]
Following a day of intense pitching between 10 shortlisted startups, pixelbug, a marketing technology engine, was named UAE ‘Get in the Ring’ champion. The Global Entrepreneur Challenge was co-hosted by Afkar.me and in5 on October 11th as part of the organisations commitment to grow the region’s start-up ecosystem. The UAE champion will now battle against other hopeful Middle Eastern entrepreneurs at the regional final in Riyadh in early November, ultimately winning the opportunity to pitch for an investment of up to €1,000,000 in the global final in Rotterdam.
pixelbug is a Dubai-based marketing technology company that helps businesses adapt new technologies to drive engagement with their stakeholders, across all industries. pixelbug’s latest augmented reality ‘edutainment’ app, colorbug, won the competition, which aims to revolutionalise the way kids aged three and above will interact with storytelling and colouring books.
On receiving the award, Dany el Eid and Elie Youssef, founders of pixelbug, said:
“pixelbug aims to make the world a more interactive place through the use of advanced technology and augmented reality techniques. We are delighted to have won today’s competition, and we are greatly looking forward to presenting our company at the regional final in Riyadh.
“’Get in the Ring’ has given us the opportunity to reach regional investors, and to interact and network with experts. We appreciate in5’s efforts in providing such an ecosystem for entrepreneurs, and we would like to thank the judges and everyone who took part in this competition; we won’t stop until we make it happen!”
Judge and Afkar.me founder Juan Jose De La Torre commented: “For the first UAE ‘Get in the Ring’, the quality of entries was very strong. I congratulate pixelbug who’s concept is innovative and creative, and who are changing the face of marketing in the UAE. By developing partnerships such as the one we have with in5, and bringing these competitions to the UAE, we continue to support the growth of the region’s entrepreneurship and investment ecosystem on its journey to become a global player.”
Judge and TiE President Prashant K. Gulati said: “There was a very positive and confident energy in the presentation room. All of the participants gave great presentations and it was difficult for us to decide who to crown the winner! We wish all of the startups the best of luck in their endeavors, and we advise them to keep on going because there is always work to be done.”
Majed Al Suwaidi, Managing Director of Dubai Internet City and Dubai Outsource Zone, said:
“’Get in the Ring’ provides an ideal platform for start-ups and entrepreneurs to meet experts and industry leaders, and to share knowledge and ideas. It is of the utmost importance that start-ups are given the proper infrastructure and support, and in5 continues to work extremely hard to ensure that start-ups and entrepreneurs are supported and nurtured from idea creation through to the launch of a product or service.
“The companies who took part in the competition and the innovation we saw here today is testament to Dubai’s vibrant entrepreneurial landscape, and it is important that people see today’s success stories to realise there are no barriers to entry into entrepreneurship. I would like to congratulate all of the competitors as well as pixelbug, and I wish them the best of luck in the regional finals in Riyadh.”
The shortlisted start-ups were:
pixelbug – Winner
Melltoo – 2nd Place Winner
The Judging panel included:
Juan Jose De La Torre, founder of Afkar.me
Prashant K. Gulati, President of TiE
Victor Kiriakos, Director, Afkar.me
Vikram Chada, VP SME marketing, Du
Zafer Younes, Founder, The Online Project
Further details are available on http://getinthering.co/
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Afkar.me is an initiative by Intigral, MENA’s leading digital hub. Afkar.me supports the growth of the region’s digital sector by sourcing, incubating and developing innovative business ideas from start-ups and entrepreneurs both in the region, and globally. Afkar.me is the first full spectrum incubator developed in MENA that gives entrepreneurs everything they require to take their ideas from conception, to market and to revenue. Through Afkar.me Intigral will provide tangible benefits to start-ups, investors, Telco operators, and ultimately add long term value to the Middle East’s digital ecosystem. www.afkar.me
Formed in 2009, Intigral is a joint venture between STC and the Malaysian media conglomerate, All Asia Networks (ASTRO) with a current workforce of more than 200 professionals based in its Dubai and Riyadh offices. As the Middle East’s leading digital hub, Intigral creates, enables, develops and delivers digital experiences and products adding value to customers and partners at every stage of the value chain. Intigral’s work with some of MENA's biggest telecom companies also gives the company and its partner’s access to a combined customer base of 34.25 million users regionally. www.intigral.net
The In5 innovation hub, launched by Dubai Internet City, aims to foster and promote entrepreneurship and innovation in order to further develop the technology start-up ecosystem in Dubai and the region. In5 provides infrastructure, support and a dynamic and engaging working environment to entrepreneurs from the early stages of idea creation through to idea implementation and the commercial launch of a product or service. It provides entrepreneurs with mentoring, training, networking opportunities and access to funding and is open to entrepreneurs of all nationalities wishing to start-up in the areas of ICT, mobile and digital media. www.in5.ae
About Get in the Ring
A non-profit event concept, initiated by the Erasmus Centre for Entrepreneurship to bring the most promising entrepreneurs from around the world in contact with investors and to inspire visitors to start their entrepreneurial journey.
Senior Manager, Corporate Communications, Intigral
T +971 4 436 1957
M +97155 605 6405