Abu Dhabi’s Fikra Labs announces winners of first start-up programme

The four-week programme pairs government entities with start-ups



Abu Dhabi’s Fikra Labs accelerator, a partnership between key government organisations and mentor platform Wamda, has selected four start-up winners following the conclusion of its first cycle.

The four-week programme was announced in February by Abu Dhabi’s tourism department, Yas Island developer Miral, airline Etihad and Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) to support innovation in the Abu Dhabi travel and tourism sector.

Read: Abu Dhabi organisations partner with Wamda for tourism accelerator

It came to end on Tuesday with investment opportunities given to Tapklik Technologies mentored by the tourism department, ViaFone Technologies mentored by ADNEC, Arabot mentored by Etihad and Scene mentored by Miral.

The programme involved each Abu Dhabi entity guiding three start-ups to address different challenges with a focus on enhancing Abu Dhabi’s tourism experience.

It was concluded with a series of sessions in which the start-ups partnered with Wamda to finalise their concepts, pitches and presentation decks.

They then pitched their ideas to the jury and participated in a question and answer session.

The winners were awarded $100,000 each in investment by their partner and now have the opportunity for further collaboration.

Tapklik’s pitch involved a full-stack programmatic media-buying and real-time bidding platform to increase performance and return on investment for advertisers and publishers.

ViaFone’s pitch was linked to its loyalty solutions and engagement services. Arabot’s involved helping business partners to improve their customer experience, automate processes and reduce costs through chatbots and Scene presented an AI social discovery platform for entertainment and city experiences.

Dubai has been operating a similar Future Accelerators programme for a number of years now, which pairs government entities with start-ups to address key challenges.

The fourth edition of the scheme launched in March with participation from 12 government entities.

Read: Crown Prince launches latest edition of Dubai Future Accelerators

The establishment of Fikra Labs follows the introduction of a $3m incentives scheme for event organisers in the UAE capital last October.

Read: Abu Dhabi establishes $3m incentive scheme for events organisers