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Arab startups set to shine

Night lights of Amman - capital of Jordan

Arab startups are more than making their mark despite having to overcome major geopolitical challenges.

To recognise those contributing to the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the World Economic Forum (WEF), in partnership with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) – part of the World Bank Group, have picked 100 Arab startups to join this month’s WEF event focused on the Middle East and North Africa.

“You can see the impact and ingenuity of Arab startups everywhere in the Arab world. We see impressive momentum and – with sovereign wealth funds and traditional family businesses – the emergence of a whole new type of venture capitalist. For me, this is the biggest underreported story in the region,” said Mirek Dusek, Head of Middle East and North Africa at the World Economic Forum.

The startups are working in areas like blockchain, satellite technology and artificial intelligence. Numerous countries will be represented, including Iraq, Palestine and Libya. The young companies will have access to key decision makers, investors and be able to network with international peers at the showcase event.

“It’s refreshing to hear the stories of entrepreneurs in the Middle East and North Africa who are talking about hope, opportunities and are creating jobs for young people. The region needs peace and security. It also needs a vibrant private sector – with dynamic entrepreneurs leading the way – to help create inclusive and sustainable growth,” added Philippe Le Houérou, IFC Chief Executive Officer.

The World Economic Forum on the Middle East and North Africa will be held between 19 to 21 May at the Dead Sea in Jordan.

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