KAUST hosts 96 startups for Misk challenge

Designed exclusively for the Entrepreneurship World Cup finalists, the KAUST bootcamp was packed with intensive mentor-led pitch sessions, industry meetings, and an overview of local market opportunities.
Updated 13 November 2019

KAUST hosts 96 startups for Misk challenge

King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) hosted 96 Entrepreneurship World Cup (EWC) finalists from 64 countries between Nov. 8 and Nov. 11 at its entrepreneurship bootcamp as part of its partnership with the Misk Global Forum (MGF).
KAUST hosted the global finalists on its campus near Jeddah to take part in a training program designed to further prepare them for the EWC global finals at the MGF in Riyadh from Nov. 12-14.
The EWC is the world’s largest startup competition, with over 100,000 applicants from 185 countries. Of the 100 global finalists, six are from Saudi Arabia: Sadeem, Faheem, Cura, Dhad, Red Sea Farms and UnitX. All were founded by graduates of KAUST’s entrepreneurship programs, including the TAQADAM and 9/10ths accelerators.
“As an international university, we strive to build bridges with the brightest minds from around the world, and we are very excited to partner with Misk for the Entrepreneurship World Cup and welcome startups to our campus from over 64 countries,” said Tony Chan, president of KAUST.
Saudi Arabia presents an extraordinary opportunity for startups interested in accessing the MENA market and tapping into KAUST’s unique ecosystem focused on finding solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges in food, water, energy and the environment.”
The KAUST-Misk partnership aims to advance Saudi Arabia’s ambitious economic transformation goals by attracting cutting-edge, impactful startups and top entrepreneurial talent to the Kingdom.

FASTFACT

The Entrepreneurship World Cup is the world’s largest startup competition, with over 100,000 applicants from 185 countries. It is conducted by the Misk Global Forum in partnership with the Global Entrepreneurship Network, alongside local and regional partners.

Shaima Hamidaddin, executive manager of MGF, said: “The EWC global finalists represent the cream of international startup talent. We’re looking forward to seeing the entrepreneurs reach even greater heights thanks to the bootcamp ahead of the finals at the Misk Global Forum. Our partnership with KAUST is part of our commitment to working with top international leaders in innovation, training, and development to achieve our global mission of empowering young people to thrive in the knowledge economy.”
Designed exclusively for the EWC finalists, the KAUST bootcamp was packed with intensive mentor-led pitch sessions, industry meetings, and an overview of local market opportunities. The university is also offering selected finalists priority spin-in access to its newly launched soft-landing program. Startups who join the program will also have access to KAUST’s world-class labs and office space, top advisory and mentorship, the Entrepreneur-in-Residence program, vibrant community life, and MENA market and industry networks.
The EWC global finals will see winners receiving life-changing prizes, support, and opportunities. The EWC is conducted by the Misk Global Forum in partnership with the Global Entrepreneurship Network (GEN), alongside local and regional partners.


AbbVie spotlights pharma sector at KAU workshop

Updated 20 January 2020

AbbVie spotlights pharma sector at KAU workshop

In partnership with AbbVie, a global biopharmaceutical company, King Abdul Aziz University (KAU) hosted an educational workshop to encourage more of its students to enter pharmaceutical careers after graduation. The workshop offered unique insights into the scientific role of a pharmacist to more than 100 male and female students from the university. 

Dr. Hani Asfour, dean of the College of Pharmacy at KAU, said: “It was a rewarding experience to see our students participate in this workshop for the first time. With the support of AbbVie, our students were able to learn more about the promising careers which await them in the pharmaceutical sector. They are now extremely eager and excited about their future prospects. I look forward to seeing what the future holds for them.” 

Ashraf Daoud, general manager of AbbVie in Saudi Arabia, said: “At AbbVie, we are proud to continue investing in the Saudi national pharmacists of tomorrow. Through our many partnerships with local universities, such as KAU, we are highly dedicated to supporting the Kingdom’s goals, as expressed in Vision 2030, and helping our aspiring Saudi pharmacists in reaching their full potential.” 

The workshop covered topics such as an overview of the pharmaceutical industry landscape, the importance of the medical representative role, key marketing concepts in pharma, as well as tips and advice on how to write a CV and prepare for interviews. Students also had the opportunity to speak to the AbbVie in-field team of pharmacists who answered their career questions and queries.

Khaled Fageha, HR director of AbbVie in Saudi Arabia, said: “As a global pharmaceutical company, there is an ever-growing need to attract the brightest Saudi talent and increase the talent pool of pharmacists. There is so much potential in the Kingdom, which we are always striving to unlock at AbbVie. Through initiatives like this, we are able to equip students across Saudi Arabia with the tools and knowledge to help them thrive in the health care industry, as well as ignite their passion for a career in pharmacy.”

Students said they found the workshop informative. “I’ve always been passionate about a role in pharmacy, but I was a bit unsure about what awaits after graduation. Thanks to this workshop, I was able to hear about the exciting prospects of working at a pharmaceutical company, such as AbbVie. I was able to ask all my questions, and now I am excited to continue working hard so I can begin my journey as a pharmacist,” said Sondos Alkhthlan, a student.

Another student, Nawaf Alharthi said: “This was an engaging workshop which has cemented my interest in becoming a pharmacist after graduating from KAU.”