TiE Dubai Unveils the Fifth Edition of TiE Women MENA Initiative

TiE Dubai Unveils the Fifth Edition of TiE Women MENA Initiative

– TiE Dubai has officially launched the fifth edition of the TiE Women MENA Programme, targeting the empowerment and support of women entrepreneurs across the MENA region.

– The programme will select top innovative ideas from five categories (UAE, Emirati, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and the rest of the Middle East), with finalists competing in pitch events and advancing to the MENA and Global Finals.

– Partnering with over 15 accelerators, incubators, and VC funds, the initiative aims to equip women founders with essential tools, knowledge, and networks, offering substantial prizes and recognition for their achievements.

The Dubai chapter of The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) has officially launched the fifth annual TiE Women MENA Programme 2024, an empowering initiative designed to support and elevate women entrepreneurs across the MENA region.

The programme seeks to create equal opportunities for women entrepreneurs to excel and contribute significantly to their economies.

The programme expands its reach to include 5 categories UAE, Emirati, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and the rest of the Middle East, underscoring its commitment to fostering gender parity in entrepreneurship in line with government efforts.

The competition kicks off with an application phase open until June 1st, 2024. Through several rounds of screening, an unbiased jury of TiE Dubai Charter members will select the top innovative ideas from each of the five categories.

The selected finalists will showcase their ventures in five rigorous pitch competitions. The winners of these competitions prepare for the MENA finals, previously hosted at the North Star Expand at GITEX.

The competition will conclude with the Global Finals in December 2024.

World Bank stated that women entrepreneurs had equal access to finance, and the growth of the companies could generate a $5-6 trillion expansion in global GDP.

Additionally, nearly half of the women in the UAE alone face significant barriers in accessing capital, with 8 out of 10 women tapping into their personal savings.

Rohit Dev, President at TiE Dubai stated: “Through time, entrepreneurs have been the biggest changemakers and have contributed tirelessly to the world economy, progress, and human sustenance. Despite this, women-led businesses in the region make up less than 5% of all businesses and 2023 saw a significant drop in fund-raising for these companies.

“For over 21 years, TiE has promoted entrepreneurship in the UAE, and since 2020, its TiE Women MENA initiative has been empowering female entrepreneurs. Supporting regional governments’ mission to increase female business owners, we aim to equip women founders with the tools, knowledge, and networks necessary to thrive in today’s competitive business environment.”

This year’s theme continues to highlight the role of women in business, with a focus on nurturing their skills through a structured framework.

Being a mission-driven organisation, TiE Women MENA Programme 2024 works with over 15 accelerators, incubators, VC funds, and members of the angel investor community in the startup ecosystem to harness each other’s strengths and specialties to uplift women entrepreneurs.

Some partners include in5, DBWC, Flat6labs (MENA), Plug and Play, StartAD, Wamda, Female Angels 2022, AngelSpark, Astrolabs (Saudi), LIVINC (Jordan), and Women Spark (Saudi).

Global and regional winners will receive prizes and recognition for their accomplishments.

In the past, winners have received equity-free cash prizes of up to $50,000 at the global finals and up to $25,000 at the MENA finals in Dubai, and they have gone on to achieve much more.

Last year’s UAE winner was Lara Hussein, Co-founder & CEO of The Waste Lab, dedicated to transforming food scraps and waste into compost for the regeneration of soil. After her win and mentoring journey with TiE Women MENA, she has gone on to garner more accolades and wins, including at COP28, SEF by Sheraa, etc. The TiE Women 2023 Emirati winner was IZI Health from Abu Dhabi, an integrative preventive care company that offers high end technological solutions to doctor’s consultations, healthy meal planning, fitness training and holistic medicine. Besides TiE Women’s support and her Emirati win, she has been selected for other programmes by ADIO and STARTAD in her entrepreneurial journey.

The other region’s winners were Playbook from Saudi Arabia, who also won runner up position at the TiE Women Global Finals in Singapore, Warrd from Egypt; and Khateera from Rest of ME. Women founders or co-founders from any industry who hold at least 33% equity, either individually or jointly, in businesses up to seven years old that operate from or for the MENA region are encouraged to apply.

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