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Successful tech startups fuel career hopes of young Saudis

Nawwaf Al-Sahhaf, CEO of Badir Program for Technology Incubators and Accelerators, center, with the representatives of the four companies launched in Riyadh on Thursday. (AN photo)
RIYADH: King Abdul Aziz City for Science and Technology (KACST), represented by the Badir Program for Technology Incubators and Accelerators, launched four new technology companies that have successfully introduced their products to attract customers and achieve future growth requirements.
The glittering event was attended by officials of government and non-governmental organizations and a number of Saudi experts and entrepreneurs.
Speaking to Arab News following the launch, Nawwaf Al-Sahhaf, CEO of the Badir program, said that the launch was part of a program that targeted 600 companies, which would provide jobs for 3,600 local youths.
The program, he said, is in line with Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Program.
“We will achieve our target of 600 companies by 2020 and so far, we have launched 127 technical projects through its five incubators, generating a market value of SR331 million ($88.26 million) for 34 of these projects alone, creating 786 jobs for young Saudis.”
Since its launch in 2007, the Badir program has exponentially grown, supporting budding entrepreneurs and serving more than 200 startups.
Congratulating the entrepreneurs whose projects were launched after the success they achieved in transforming their ideas into distinctive commercial technology projects, the CEO said the new startup companies have received logistic and advisory support from the Badir program and the necessary guidance for their growth and business development in the local market.
The list of companies launched at the event included “Elag,” which specializes in online medical technology and aims to facilitate booking of appointments in health facilities and quick access to medical services at the lowest cost; “Ineed,” specialized in car rentals and connecting customers to service providers in a technical way; “Ajeer,” which seeks innovative solutions in the field of home maintenance by connecting customers to the best maintenance service providers; as well as “Tamweel,” specialized in designing and developing an electronic platform combining financing and instalment applicants in the fields of car, personal or mortgage finance.
He stressed that the launch of these companies comes within the framework of the huge efforts exerted by KACST, represented by Badir Program, to present various aspects of support and care for Saudi innovators and entrepreneurs and provide an environment that motivates them to develop their ideas and turn them into technical projects.
“We are very proud of the entrepreneurs’ achievements in the four new companies and are extremely pleased that the founders of these companies can prove themselves as successful startups,” he added.
The Badir program seeks to enhance the concept of technical entrepreneurship.

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