Startup Nova – Entrepreneurship Explosion was held at Hilton Ramses on 5th December 2017 by Innoventures which marked the final phase Startup Reactor program’s fourth cycle. Four shortlisted startups were lucky to take home 15, 000 Euros by VC4A, the main sponsor, and the program partners. In the same forum, it was announced that there would be a 100 million EGP fund for startup venture located in Egypt.
Happiana won the first prize. Happiana mainly specializes in creating flexible charging solutions that can charge any device, anywhere at any time, with the aim of doing away with the lack of enough power in the battery. They managed to get a cash prize of 8, 000 Euros. Bioniclimbs got the second position which was worth 4, 000 Euros. The startup is a research and development company for developing prosthetic limbs with a focus on high functionality, fast production, and customization.
The third position was taken by Agrona, a startup that gives new technology in chipboard manufacturing that is distinguished by its low price and a wide range of applications in industrial and furniture usages. The last prize which is also known as the popular vote that was worth 1, 000 Euro went to Imaginators which is an online firm that helps people create interactive, customizable, presentations just by dragging & dropping components, using a range of built-in tools.
During the forum, Hesham Wahby, CEO, got a chance to give an opening speech where he introduced the Startup Reactor program. Shehab El-Nawawi, CEO, and Chairman of Giza Systems gave a keynote speech in which he encouraged the young entrepreneurs to develop on their ideas and always to take failure positively as it offers the basis to success. He talked of the urge of working towards one’s passion to the later despite the challenges faced on the way.
Ben White Founder and CEO of VC4A, expressed his happiness in working with Innoventures to support entrepreneurship and lauding startup Nova as the bedrock of the entrepreneurship community in Egypt. Muhammed Mansour, Business Development Manager at the Planet, spoke on behalf of Juicelabs and spoke about Juicelabs’ partnership with Innoventures in the whole fourth cycle of Startup Reactor, in the media track. Ghada Moghny, the Programme Coordinator at CEDARE, delivered a short speech on cooperating with CEDARE on this cycle’s e-waste track
Yara Yehia, one of the co-founders of Tripdizer, spoke about her experience in the third cycle of Startup Reactor’s program, as one of the winners in 2017 Startup Nova, stating the walk she had undergone with Innoventures in Startup Reactor. Noha Fathi, marketing, and management consultant represented Innoventures’ mentorship program, stating that the ten startups have received over 360 hours of mentorship throughout the Plasma phase of the Startup Reactor.
After the speeches, ten startups gave out four-minute pitches each to a group of judges. The group had Inji Amr Borai, Founder of Acumen Consulting, Dina Mabrouk, Executive director of Finance at Spectrum Development, Abdallah Salam, Board Member at Paradise Capital and Founder of Minka Investments, Hossam Heiba, Managing Partner at Orbis Capital, Louay Youssef, General Manager of Retail at Talaat Mostafa Group, and Ben White, Founder & CEO of VC4A. Then startups were shortlisted from 200 applicants to the fourth cycle of Startup Reactor, comprised of number industries like Healthcare, Technology & Manufacturing, Education & Training, Energy, Software, Electronic Waste Management, Social Networking & Matchmaking, and Hardware & Recycling.
The ten startups comprised of Bioniclimb, Imaginators, Tomatiki, Nezaker, Ekacia, Okhtub, Happiana, TechnoRecycle, Tracktech, and Agorona. Before the winners were announced, Munaf Emam, COO, introduced Innoventures’ future partnerships and plans. A design track for the fifth cycle of Startup Reactor was announced in partnership with 49 Studios, led by Ashraf Tawakol, CEO of Taya IT and Founder of 49 Studios. A computing track was announced in partnership with IBM, led by Myrna Fahim, MEA DevEx Leader – Egypt, Pakistan & Morocco. Finally, Rafik Dalala, Investment Committee member at Innoventures and Managing Director of Intercap, expressed that the presence of local and international investors at the event is the most integral part of the event to fulfill Innoventures’ goal in helping startups to obtain funding for their businesses. Rafik also announced Innoventures and Intercap’s partnership in securing the 100 million EGP fund for Egyptian startups.