Archive for the ‘Startup News’ Category

Berytech Fund Invests In Panoramic Imaging Startup Dermandar

| October 6, 2010 – 10:22 am | comment No Comments

Berytech Fund, the Beirut-based seed capital fund, just announced a new investment in Dermandar, a Lebanon based technology startup focused on online digital image processing; acquiring a 35% stake of the company through the deal.

Dermandar (Arabic for all around), is a company that has developed online software that automatically creates panoramic pictures in a fast and simple way.

It enables users to take photos with any normal camera, create a panorama out of them using their online tool really quickly and then share it with the world. Basically what the tool does is it takes the photos the user took, looks at the edges of the photos for matching parts and then uses those to stitch the photos together into a bigger panoramic image.

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Yamli Transliteration Application Launched For iPhone And iPad

| October 4, 2010 – 1:46 pm | comment 4 Comments

YamliYamli, the startup that specializes in smart transliteration technologies for the Arabic Web, just unveiled its new official iOS application for the iPhone and the iPad, bringing their technology to their users while on the move on their mobile phones and tablets.

The app is priced at $2.99, works mostly offline, and is pretty straight-forward in how it works. Once a user clicks on the purple Yamli logo, a text area opens up for the user to type in the text they want transliterated into Arabic; this text can then be sent as an SMS or an email message.

Using the app too, users can perform web searches, as well as specific searches on YouTube, iTunes and Maps. Obviously the search options would require an internet connection to work. (more…)

ContactCars Launches Arabic iPhone App For Egyptian Car Market

| September 30, 2010 – 11:20 am | comment No Comments

ContactCars, the Egyptian portal that provides news and car specs and prices in for the Egyptian market has gone on and launched an Arabic iPhone app for their service, aiming to make it easier for users to access the information they provide while on the go.

The application, just like the site itself, provides a variety of information about cars available in the Egyptian market, with the goal of providing the information a user needs to be able to choose the best car that suits his budget and needs.

It offers the possibility of checking the latest car prices and their features from the various car models out in the market, with photos of each car and its specifications, as well as a list of similar cars the user might be interested in. Cars can be browsed and searched through either by model or price.

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GoNabit Goes Live In Another Arab City With Deal In Beirut

| September 29, 2010 – 11:52 am | comment No Comments

GoNabitGoNabit, the online group-buying platform, that was launched for the region from Dubai earlier this year, has officially launched its first deal in Beirut Lebanon, marking its expansion into the third Arab city for it, after Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

Just like in other cities, GoNabit will be featuring deals that people can sign-up to receive and buy if they’re interested, within a limited timeframe, with the deal only taking place once a minimum number of buyers commit to buying.

The first deal in Beirut is one for women, a 61% discount on a blow dry, manicure, and pedicure at the Fadia El Mendelek Salon in Beirut.

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N2V Announces Investment In Emirati Startup Yebab

| August 23, 2010 – 1:27 pm | comment 1 Comment

YebabNational Net Ventures N2V, one of the top internet groups in the Middle East just announced its investment in Yebab.com, the Arab portal specialized in organizing wedding celebrations in the United Arab Emirates.

Rashid Al Ballaa, CEO of N2V, stated that the project comes in line with the group’s current and future plans to expand its presence at the regional and the international levels. The plan is obviously to enhance the portal’s growth and presence, expanding it into other Arab Gulf countries, and the rest of the Middle East region, establishing it as the most trusted wedding directory in the Arab world.

Yebab.com, which was launched from the UAE in 2009, has proven really successful in the UAE, becoming a leading portal providing a directory of wedding services in the country; including listings for the various suppliers and services from caterers to dressmakers, artists, photographers and traditional musicians. The site shows strong potential to perform just as well and more in other markets around the region.

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Yamli Releases Enterprise Version Of Arabic Query Expander

| August 22, 2010 – 2:43 pm | comment No Comments

YamliYamli, the company that brought us products like the Smart Arabic Keyboard and Yamli Arabic Search, is releasing an enterprise version of the technology being used for Yamli Arabic Search in the form of a product they’re calling Arabic Query Expander.

The new service provides a solution for search and data normalization problems when it comes to the Arabic language, by analyzing and identifying all the English and Arabic script variations of an Arabic word, increasing the probability to find matches for searches.

Yamli gives examples like the name “Mohamed Mansour” having at least 80 ways of spelling it, “Mohamed Saleh Abdallah” having 7000 variations, “Jumeirah” having 51 spellings, and the song “Habibi Ya Nor El Ein” having 1207 spelling variations; to make the case for the utility of this tool and how much it can help in solving this problem.

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AqarMap.com Launches New Version Based On User Feedback

| August 21, 2010 – 5:22 pm | comment 1 Comment

AqarMapAqarMap.com, the regional online real estate marketplace that was launched a few months ago, and that enables users to search for houses, apartments and land based on location, through satellite maps, has launched a new version.

According to numbers from AqarMap, they’ve grown quite well over the past few months, reaching a number of over 600 registered Real Estate companies and brokers, who are using the service and posting their properties on it.

The new version of the site aims to bring improved usability and more features for the users. The interesting thing is that all the enhancements and features in this new version were built on ideas and features requested by the early adopting users and clients of AqarMap, which makes it pretty much a crowd sourced effort.

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Video: Loomni Presents Education Project At DemoCamp Dubai

| June 29, 2010 – 11:48 am | comment 5 Comments

LoomniLoomni is a new service for the region that aims to empower continuing education, making it more accessible and affordable to everyone. The service was previously reviewed here.

The overall idea of the startup is to fill the existing gap and provide learning opportunities for people who can’t afford expensive courses, nor have the time to spend locked up for long hours in a training venue somewhere.

It aims to do this by providing focused practical courses delivered in 90 minutes, at a fraction of the price available in the market, by working with another profile of instructors, mainly experts on certain fields who can share their knowledge and experience, educating people about their areas of expertise, but also helping market themselves and their services along the way.

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Jeddah Food, The Online Restaurant Guide Launches iPhone App

| June 22, 2010 – 9:40 pm | comment 2 Comments

Jeddah FoodJeddah Food, the English language online restaurant guide to restaurants in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, recently announced the launch of their new iPhone mobile application.

The application enables visitors to Jeddah, as well as locals, quickly find restaurants around the city, based on your current location, while on the go. It provides a search functionality to look for specific restaurants and cafes around Jeddah, as well as quick categories that enables users to click through directly and locate places by type of cuisine (e.g. Lebanese, Japanese, Burgers etc.)

For each venue, the application provides the venue details, phone numbers, website details, photo galleries, and maps.

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Ras2Ras Social Rating Platform Acquired By Qatari Investor

| June 13, 2010 – 8:38 am | comment 14 Comments

ras2rasRas2Ras, the Yemen-based online social rating and comparison platform, that was previously covered here, has been acquired by Qatari investor Ahmed Alaji.

Ras2Ras, which was founded by Amad Almsaodi in 2008, was built around a very simple yet really interesting idea: putting any two comparable things against each other, and letting people vote on which they like best.

Now, even though the tool’s idea is very simple in principle, it could be used for a number of research and user engagement purposes by businesses, with the potential to be a source of some really interesting and useful insights and information.

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