QDB launches Startup Weekend Doha with HBKU
17 Oct 2016 - 12:08
Doha: Building on the programme’s past success, Qatar Development Bank (QDB) launched a new edition of “Startup Weekend Doha,” from October 13 to 15, in collaboration with Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU). Startup Weekend Doha, a QDB initiative that actively encourages Qatar’s youth to develop an interest in entrepreneurial pursuits, was also earlier held in April this year at Qatar University.
The latest edition of this year’s Startup Weekend Doha at HBKU saw the active involvement of 40 participants from across Qatar.
During Startup Weekend Doha at HBKU, participants formed teams through which they partook in the competition, attended brainstorming sessions to help them shortlist a selection of ideas and developed their concepts into workable business models. In their endeavour to build the basis for a feasible project, participants were supported by a team of appointed specialists who discussed the projects with their respective owners to prepare the participants for their final presentations.
The teams delivered their final presentations in front of a panel of judges, consisting of four representatives, each representing one of the collaborating partners: QDB, Qatar Science & Technology Park (QSTP), Injaz Qatar and HBKU. Finalist teams were qualified on the basis of their idea’s creativity and innovation, as well as the viability of their proposed project’s development.
The competition concluded with an award ceremony, where Executive Director of Advisory Services, QDB, Hamad Khamis Al Kubaisi distributed prizes to the winning teams. Startup Weekend
Doha rewarded the top three teams with cash prizes of QR25,000 for finalists completing at the first place, QR15,000 for second place and QR5,000 for the third place.
Hamad Khamis Al Kubaisi said: “QDB considers inculcating a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship among the Qatari youth and future generations as part of its mission. Our programme, Startup Weekend Doha with HBKU, is a component of our larger strategy to encourage economic diversification and encourage a spirit of competitiveness in the private sector, aswas envisioned in Qatar National Vision 2030. For the program’s latest edition, we collaborated with HBKU because of their ongoing support of building a knowledge-based economy. Together, through Startup Weekend Doha, we have encouraged participants to develop their business ideas and turn them into potential models for building important projects in the future.”
Head of Learning, QDB, Saoud Abdullah Al Mannai said: “QDB believes in the importance of capacity and potential development as the basis for growing the private sector. Our cooperation with HBKU, in launching the second edition of the Startup Weekend Doha, helped us combine a range of practical and academic expertise to appropriately assess the quality and feasibility of the projects developed during the weekend.”
Director of the Career Development Center – Student Affairs, HBKU, Adam Al Saadi said: “It is important that we, at HBKU, build connections with well-reputed organisations, such as QDB, that are working to enhance the human capacity of the nation. By welcoming QDB to the HBKU Student Center, we are grateful that our students, our fresh graduates and our more established alumni have the opportunity to learn more about developing entrepreneurial skills.”
During the latest edition of Startup Weekend Doha competition, Team “Ahlan Gifts” secured first place; Team “Karage” came second; and Team “Wain” came third and final. The awards were gifted to the winners at the conclusion of the final presentation ceremony.