Saudi Arabia is planning to be a global center for startups… An agreement to host 100 startups in cooperation with Google

Saudi Arabia is planning to be a global center for startups... An agreement to host 100 startups in cooperation with Google

Saudi Arabia is planning to be a global center for startups... An agreement to host 100 startups in cooperation with Google

Pioneer Investors – In order to promote, enable, and accelerate 100 emerging technology and digital companies around the world each year, Saudi Arabia intends to create four business accelerators. Through a strategic partnership announced recently between the “Garage” project and Google’s startup accelerator, Saudi Arabia hopes to attract companies to open their main headquarters in the Kingdom.

As a result of this partnership, Al Garage, the leading technology destination in Saudi Arabia, and its startups will join a network of the best business accelerator programs in Latin America, Africa, Europe, and Asia. It follows the objectives of “Vision 2030” to develop the digital economy and to enhance the role of the project that it started in developing and empowering entrepreneurs and emerging companies in the technical and digital sectors since its launch at the global “LEAP 2022” conference in Riyadh last February.

Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Mr. Abdullah Al-Sawaha confirmed that this partnership reinforces Saudi Arabia’s position as a regional center for innovation and technology, as it is the largest market for technology in the region, with a volume exceeding $40 billion, and a pivotal center for attracting talent and digital innovation, indicating that it will enhance The Kingdom’s efforts to enable male and female entrepreneurs to continue regional leadership through innovative digital solutions and applications.

It is noteworthy that the “Garage” project is the result of cooperation between the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, the King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST), and the Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming, and Drones. It includes 3 main elements. It is “Garage Disrupt”, which is a monthly event that brings together emerging technology companies with investors, in the presence of government and private sectors, and “Garage Plus”, which is a global business accelerator, and the headquarters of “Al Garage”, which provides entrepreneurs with all the tools necessary for the success of their projects.

The partnership focuses on the project’s business accelerator program, Garage Plus. Through it, the team aspires to build a program that competes with the global accelerator programs, which is what Google has by providing the team with a huge base of science, knowledge, and best practices that it has reached through its previous programs and its cooperation with the best-related programs around the world.

“Since we announced the (garage), we have been striving to provide the best for the entrepreneur’s community, considering that this partnership “is the best step to achieve this, as it guarantees our startups access to leading trainers and mentors in their fields at the global level, in addition to promoting their development through (Google) support services” Dr. Mounir El-Desouki, president of KACST, said.

In addition, Faisal Al-Khamisi, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Federation, stated that this partnership “comes as an extension of the vision that we set when establishing (the garage), and the role it represents in supporting entrepreneurs in the digital and technical sectors to achieve Saudi Arabia’s vision of making Riyadh the regional technical center for the Middle East.”

For his part, Salim Obeid, Regional Developer Relations Officer for the Middle East and North Africa at Google, expressed his happiness in cooperating with “The Garage” to contribute to supporting emerging local companies in Saudi Arabia, and enabling them to develop at the local and regional levels, adding: “We aspire through the (Google Accelerator) program to encourage startup communities around the world to benefit from their experiences and exchange knowledge and resources to achieve growth.

It is noteworthy that the “garage” succeeded, through 3 past “Disrupt” events, in presenting more than 40 startup companies to nearly 800 investors and guests, which resulted in more than 45 investment meetings and 5 agreements. It aims to achieve growth and sustainability for entrepreneurial companies and help them transform their innovative ideas into products and services with a market value, and develop mechanisms and methodologies that link them with supporting entities, in addition to facilitating access to the laboratories and capabilities of “KASTE” to provide all services and support to entrepreneurs in technical projects.