The UAE’s neighbourhood app, Hayi, has raised $325,000 in a seed round led by Sarya Holdings and Falak Startups.
Chris Darnell and Rene Morgan founded Hayi in 2020. It is a hyperlocal social network that digitizes UAE neighborhoods by connecting all neighbors, local businesses, and community managers to create stronger and more connected communities.
The community-based startup is committed to creating a safe and exclusive platform that can help bring communities together both online and offline. Chris Darnell, CEO of Hayi commented “Residents are looking to connect with each other now more than ever. A stronger and more connected neighbourhood can introduce a wealth of benefits to an individual’s day-to-day life, as well as tackling an array of issues which have become inflated these past two years with the pandemic.”
The startup also plans on using its recent investment to accelerate its growth across the country before looking to make strategic entrances into various new markets with the goal of becoming the largest hyperlocal social network in the MENA region. Rene Morgan, COO, added that “The fundraising round will really help us develop the product further for all end users and create an exclusive space for them to connect, without irrelevant noise from outside their community.”
As part of its freemium model, Hayi looks to partner with all Community Management and Property Development firms across the region and has seen a sharp increase in interest from these firms in using the free app to better connect with their residents as well as create a stronger and more connected community.
“We are beyond excited to start our journey with Hayi’s outstanding team and become part of the immense growth of the first of its kind neighborhood management solution. Hayi presents a great opportunity for us to learn about community behaviour as well as a powerful platform to integrate with many other solutions.” – Falak Startups
On behalf of in5, Dubai’s leading business incubator that has three centres covering media, tech and design, Majed Alsuwaidi, Managing Director of Dubai Media City, said: “We’re delighted to see that Hayi reached a new milestone. The start-up’s focus on local and hyperlocal communities is timely, with the past 18 months having highlighted the importance of bringing communities together both online and offline. Hayi joins a growing list of start-ups that are thriving after coming through in5’s ecosystem which is designed to help entrepreneurs transform ideas into commercially viable ventures. Success stories such as Hayi’s also bolster Dubai’s reputation as a leading destination for talent and entrepreneurs”.
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