Sunday 09 August 2020 - 1:30:09 pm

Hub71 appoints new CEO, selects eleven new global startups


ABU DHABI, 13th July, 2020 (WAM) -- Hub71, Abu Dhabi’s global tech ecosystem based in Abu Dhabi Global Market Square, today announced the latest startups to have been selected for the Hub71 Incentive Programme’s second cohort of the year.

The eleven startups come from all over the world, including: Bahrain-founded Tarabut Gateway, the first and largest regulated open banking platform that connects a regional network of banks and FinTechs via a universal application programming interface, API; UAE-based Arabee, an Emirati award-winning educational language app that teaches young minds to listen, speak, read and write Arabic with ease; Lebanon-founded Mint Basil Market, an AI-enabled health and wellness online platform; and US-based Scanalytics, a global leader in IOT and sensors which transforms physical spaces like convention halls into smart and responsive environments using predictive consumer behavior analytics a data-science.

The tech ecosystem, which opened its doors in March 2019, has selected over 60 global startups for the Hub71 Incentive Programme to-date. Twenty-one percent of the startups at Hub71 are led by female leaders and there are over 33 different founder nationalities based in the tech ecosystem.

Hub71 also announced the appointment of its Chief Executive Officer, Hanan Harhara Al Yafei. Joining from Mubadala where she was an executive director, Al Yafei has a strong track record of leading teams and initiatives across multiple sectors including technology, with expertise in building successful organizational structures.

Al Yafei, CEO of Hub71, commented, "I am delighted to take on this role at an exciting moment for Hub71 and for the wider technology, start-up and investment community within Abu Dhabi. Since its launch, the ecosystem has grown into something truly special, attracting incredible companies, building new skills and networks, and growing businesses in a wide range of sectors. The potential of the startups and of Hub71 is limitless and I join a brilliant team making this vision a reality.

"As we begin this exciting journey together, I’d like to commend my new colleagues and the global startups that form our close-knit Hub71 community," she added. "It is their hard work, resilience and dedication that has made the entire community stronger. Though the last few months have been tough for all businesses and SMEs particularly, Hub71 has been a safe space that has proactively helped its startups navigate the difficult market conditions. As our founder-centric community expands, we celebrate our diversity as a global tech ecosystem with founders from Asia, the Middle East, Europe and the United States. Finally, to the eleven startups that have been selected for the Q2 2020 cohort; congratulations and kudos to you and your teams. As members of the Abu Dhabi tech community, your success is our success and we endeavor to support you in your global ventures from this point onwards."

US-based Scanalytics Founder and CEO, Joe Scanlin, said, "Coming from Chicago, my young family and I are very excited to be moving to Abu Dhabi. Being an IOT and PropTech company, we have been most impressed with the real estate and digital infrastructure in the UAE – from the 5G networks to the UAE’s appetite for new technology and innovative ideas. Using Abu Dhabi as our base, my team and I will take this opportunity to explore new markets in Europe as well as hire tech talent from the top universities in the UAE."

Vanessa Zuabi, CEO & Co-Founder of Mint Basil Market, added, "Coming from Lebanon to the UAE, Abu Dhabi is the perfect launch pad for our health and wellness business, as there’s much better market access to the entire GCC. Not only is it easier to import a wider range of products, there are more discerning consumers for B2C startups like ours. Being a tech platform, it’s also important for us to be able to hire great talent – and hiring data scientists from or attracting them to the UAE is much easier than anywhere else in the Middle East."

Startups selected for the Hub71 Incentive Programme receive non-equity subsidies including 100 per cent free housing, office space and health insurance for two years for seed companies and 50 percent subsidises for three years for emergent companies; worth up to AED3.0 million (USD 800k) per startup.

WAM/Rasha Abubaker/Esraa Ismail