Archive for the ‘Lebanon’ Category
The MIT Arab Business Plan Competition is a competition designed to encourage all entrepreneurs in the Arab world to start their own company and, ultimately, create a nest of leading firms in the Arab world.
The current version of the competition was officially launched on October 12th 2009 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. The competition went through a number of rounds, including different teams covering the following sectors: Energy, Engineering, Healthcare, Internet, Software and Telecom.
The final round just took place at a ceremony in Cairo, Egypt, and the awards for this year were handed out. The winners of this edition of the MIT Arab Business Plan Competition are as follows:
First place: The Little Engineer (Lebanon) – Prize: $US 50,000
An after-school edutainment center which introduces kids and teens [age 4-16+] to pre-engineering courses such as robotics, physics, electricity, electronics, renewable energy and more.
Team: Rana El Chemaitelly, Albert Shamieh, Nadia Alamah, Marwa Harb.
IBAG, International Business Alliance Group, presents the first edition of a new international conference for the Arab internet industry, ArabNet 2010, under the tagline of “Trends and Opportunities in Arab Web Business.”
The conference will be held in Beirut on March 25-26, 2010 with the support of Endeavor Jordan, the Queen Rania Center for Entrepreneurship, the Syrian Young Entrepreneurs Association and YallaStartup!.
ArabNet aims to bring the internet community together to network and help launch the hottest startups from across the region. Top investors, internet executives and leaders from Google, Yahoo!, Facebook, AdMob and Intel will address subjects that are critical to the Arab Web Industry including: e-commerce, gaming, mobile, content, online advertising, social networking, new media, and start-up fundraising.
Key to the conference are pitch sessions: Ideathon & Startup Demo. This is the place to match talent with opportunity.
The Ideathon is looking for 10 select entrepreneurs to introduce their fresh startup ideas to eager investors in a rapid-fire pitch session. Similarly, the Demo will select startups with innovative products to pitch and exhibit their companies for the duration of the conference.
Applications are currently being accepted from entrepreneurs and startups from all over the region with strong ideas and products.
For more details about the conference as well as how to apply, you can visit the official website: ArabNet.me.
[StartUpArabia is an official media partner of ArabNet 2010.]
LiveTweeting is a new real-time interactive web application that was launched as a tool for multi-language live coverage of events around the world, based around the popular micro blogging service twitter.
The way it works is that a group of people present at a certain event would tweet their updates covering the event as it happens, while on the other hand a number of multi-lingual twitter users would simultaneously translate and tweet the updates in another language. Both versions, the original and the translation, are aggregated on the LiveTweeting site.
People following the live coverage of the event (both original and translation) on the service are able to vote on the tweets they like by starring them. No user registration is currently required to follow an event’s coverage or to vote on the updates for it.
LiveTweeting was officially launched earlier today (Dec 9th 2009), just in time to be able to cover the Le Web 2009 conference in English and have its translation crowdsourced into Arabic.
4SITE Forum (Sustainability, Innovation, Technology & Entrepreneurship) – Beirut – November 17-18th 2009Mohamed Marwen Meddah | November 12, 2009 – 10:52 am | No Comments
4SITE Forum (Investing in Sustainability, Innovation, Technology & Entrepeneurship) is an event being held in Beirut, Lebanon, bringing together over 200 investors, innovators, and entrepreneurs in Lebanon and the Middle East region. The goal of the event is to promote innovation and entrepreneurship towards sustainable economic development and social impact.
The event is organized by RootSpace and Baraka Group in conjunction with Global Entrepreneurship Week (a yearly event taking place in November in over 80 countries worldwide), and will be held over two days, full of participatory panels, keynotes, workshops, demonstrations, and networking.
The event will be taking place at Bayt El-Tabib Conference Center in Beirut, Lebanon, on November 17-18th. The plan is for this event to be the first in a series of other 4SITE Forums to take place around the region.
The keynote speakers at the event include Joi Ito, the CEO of Creative Commons, John Wilbanks, the CEO of Science Commons, and Rabea Ataya, the CEO of Bayt.com.
Besides the fixed program, there are some slots in the schedule that are planned for Barcamp-style presentations and demos by the participants.
Along with the event, 4SITE Forum and Hibr are also hosting the Global Innovation Tournament (GIT), an initiative of Global Entrepreneurship Week, in Lebanon, with this year’s challenge being to come up with a way to make saving money fun, in light of the current global recession.
A committee of experts will be selecting the projects based on the following merits: technological and scientific quality, creativity, economic sustainability and growth potential, job creation potential, target market and export potential, as well as the motivation and implication of the candidate(s) and the quality of the team behind the startup.
The obtained award should allow entrepreneurs to take their idea from project to company phase, while benefiting from the following services of Berytech: Business hosting (including office space, furniture, desktop facilities, …etc.); Computer equipment, Internet connection, web hosting; Coaching throughout the project development phase; Participation in communication, marketing and other networking events; Expert consultancy; Entrepreneurial training; and access to funding sources such as Kafalat or the Berytech Seed Capital Fund.
Applications are open until November 30th, 2009; entrepreneurs just need to download and fill in the following application form, and submit it in time.
The winning projects and teams will be announced in December 2009, with their integration in the incubator to start happening as early as January 2010.
Woopra, the innovative and real-time web analytics tool, has just officially come out of beta, with the company announcing the beginning of Woopra’s general availability.
With this launch, Woopra have introduced a whole paid plans structure, with registration now open to everyone opting for one of the paid plans, that range from $4.95 per month for sites with up to 100,000 monthly page views, all the way to $99.95 per month for sites with up to 4 Million monthly page views.
Free ad-supported plans, with a monthly page view limit of 30,000, will be made available via invitations that will be sent out by existing users, as soon as they get the whole invitation system up and running.
All current beta accounts will be automatically transformed into free accounts, but their users can choose to upgrade to any of the paid plans.
The different plans bring different levels of service as well as the page view limits, with differences in the number of users they can create for their account, the number of months that data is stored for, SSL support, email reports, and whether they have full or limited access to some of the more advanced features.
For more details on this launch, you can check out the official blog post here: Woopra officially exits beta.
Woopra, the innovative and real-time web analytics tool, just announced that their beta program is coming to an end and that in the coming weeks, the beta label will be dropped and the waiting list for the service ended.
From then on, different levels of paid accounts will be introduced and registration will be open for anyone wishing to sign up for a paid version of Woopra. Those who are interested in the free version will still need to obtain an invitation code in order to register a site.
As part of the introduction of paid accounts, the page view limit that was fixed at 10,000 page views a day for beta accounts will be lifted, and users will be able to instantaneously upgrade to any level of traffic necessary to ensure Woopra tracks all of their visitors daily.
The paid account levels are structured based on monthly page view limits, and according to a non-final draft of the pricing structure, range from $4.95 for sites with up to 100,000 monthly page views, all the way to $99.95 for sites with up to 3 Million monthly page views. Free accounts for personal non-commercial use have a limit of up to 30,000 monthly page views.
All current beta accounts will be automatically transformed into free accounts, but their users can choose to upgrade to any of the paid versions.
Of course, for each level, other than the page view limit, there are different levels of service as well, with differences in the number of users they can create for their account, the number of months that data is stored for, whether SSL support is provided or not, and whether they have full or limited access to some of the more advanced features.
These changes should start happening over the next couple of weeks, with a number of new features to be introduced to the service as well.
All this of course is a natural step forward for Woopra, that was in the plans from the beginning, in order to start generating revenue, cover the costs of their infrastructure, and make the company and service sustainable.
For more details on the coming changes and the pricing structure, check out the official Woopra blog post.
A number of Arab cities will be hosting Twestival Local events in the coming days, part of the 200 Twestival Local events taking place in leading cities around the world between the 10th and 13th of September 2009, based around the social media service Twitter, and using its power to support local causes.
Twestival is run 100% by volunteers and independently from any not-for-profit; although the organizing teams do work closely to outline an achievable and measurable fundraising target.
Here’s a list of the Twestival Local events taking place around the Arab world, with details about when and where they’ll be held as well as the local causes they’re supporting:
Dubai Twestival Local:
When: Saturday, September 12th 2009 at 8pm
Where: The Jam Jar Gallery in Al Quoz, Dubai, UAE
Supported local cause: Dubai Autism Center
Abu Dhabi Twestival Local:
When: Sunday, September 13th 2009 at 8pm
Where: Ramadan tent of Le Royal Meridien hotel in Abu Dhabi, UAE
Supported local cause: Future Centre for Special Needs
Beirut Twestival Local:
When: Sunday, September 13th 2009 at 4pm
Where: Rawda/Chatila Cafe in Beirut, Lebanon
Supported local cause: IndyAct
Amman Twestival Local:
When: Sunday, September 13th 2009 at 9pm
Where: Al Hashemeyyen Theater, Royal Scientific Society in Amman, Jordan
Supported local cause: Al-Aman Fund for the Future of the Orphans
Twestival Local is a great opportunity for people to connect with other members of the community, and give them a chance to feel they are contributing to a larger social initiative on top of it all.
Google just announced the launch of four new Arabic editions of Google News for Egypt, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Users in these countries can now access Google News editions specific to their country and get the latest headlines in topics such as Politics, Business, Sports, Entertainment and more.
This is part of Google’s ongoing push to provide local services and more relevant information and news for users, starting with these four countries that represent more than 24 million Arabic-speaking internet users.
Like all Google News editions, these computer-generated Arabic editions aggregate headlines from thousands of news outlets around the world, group similar stories together and link directly to the original sources that publish these stories. This enables users to search for topics they’re interested in, and read a wide variety of perspectives from different sources.
It seems there are plans by Google to continue rolling out more local editions for the rest of the Arab countries in the near future.
Plans to create a media city in Beirut, that were recently launched by Kuv Capital, are still moving ahead steadily, with the date for the first open discussion scheduled for April 29th 2009 at 6:30PM in Beirut. It will be at GEM – Beirut, Gemeyzeh, St. Nicolas Stairs.
This first open discussion will be to get more people involved and giving their opinions and suggestions, and to brainstorm on services the community thinks should be available at the Beirut Media City, among other things.
People interested in attending the event can register for it on EventBrite here: Beirut Media City First Open Discussion.
In the mean time, they are also still looking for places for the media city, and ask people to suggest any old buildings they think could be refurbished anywhere around Beirut.
They’re also in discussions with architects (both young talents, as well as big names) to work on the project.
Talks are also ongoing with international companies who could be interested in working out of this future Media City.
A site has been launched to follow the developments of the project at: beirutmediacity.info
If you want to be involved in any way or help in growing this project, you can contact Kuv Capital at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Update: The open discussion will be taking place at GEM – Beirut, Gemeyzeh, St. Nicolas Stairs.