TOP STARTUPS IN JORDAN TO INVEST IN

The WEF Fourth Industrial Revolution Startups

The World Economic Forum, in partnership with the International Finance Corporation, have selected the top 100 Arab world startups that are transforming the MENA region and reshaping the future in the context of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR).

“You can see the impact and ingenuity of Arab start-ups everywhere in the Arab world. We see impressive momentum and – with sovereign wealth funds and traditional family businesses – the emergence of a whole new type of venture capitalist. For me, this is the biggest underreported story in the region.” – Mirek Dusek, Head of Middle East and North Africa of the World Economic Forum.

These 4IRStartups were selected in collaboration with the region’s leading authorities on the entrepreneurship ecosystem, including Wamda, Flat6Labs, Kawar Investments and Leap Ventures. Here are the Jordanian startups to keep an eye out for:

LIWWA

SAMER ATIANI & AHMED MOOR

Liwwa is an online lender which improves access to capital for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Jordan and the UAE.

HYPERPAY

MUHANNAD EBWINI

HyperPay is the fastest growing payment gateway in the MENA region. It caters to every online merchant’s personal needs with a guarantee for ease-of-use and top security against fraud.

MADFOOATCOM

NASSER SALEH

MadfooatCom operates ‘eFawateerCom’, the Central Bank’s national electronic bill presentment and payment service (EBPPS) enabling clients to inquire and pay securely online, 24/7.

ARABIA WEATHER

MOHAMMED AL-SHAKER

Arabia Weather is the first and largest weather site for all Arab countries.

HELLOWORLDKIDS

HANAN KHADER

Hello World Kids (HWK) is a local native coding curriculum for children offering native programming courses for kids at the young age of 8 as a mainstream class.

AUMET

YAHYA AQEL

Aumet is the first marketplace to sell SME’s medical manufacturers’ products directly to healthcare providers. Aumet disrupt the market by automating assigning distributors to the medical manufacturer and sell the product directly to healthcare providers getting the best price directly from manufacturers.

TARJAMA

NOUR AL HASSAN

Tarjama is a certified translation agency with offices across the Middle East.

JAMALON

ALA’ ALSALLAL

Jamalon is the largest online bookstore in the MENA region selling English and Arabic books in the Arab World with home delivery and localized payment methods.

LUMINUS

IBRAHIM SAFADI

Luminus Education provides equal education opportunities for all. The platform offers short courses, one and two year accredited diploma programs, a three year degree program, and professional training for organizations and individuals.

TAMATEM INC

HUSSAM HAMMO

Tamatem is the leading mobile game developer and publisher in the MENA region. The company localizes globally published mobile games and develops their own games for Arabic speakers.

ALTIBBI

JALIL ALLABADI

AlTibbi is the largest digital health platform in the Arab World, including 1.5M pages of medical content and a 24/7 telehealth service.

OPENSOOQ.COM

ADEY SALAMIN

OpenSooq.com is a marketplace that allows users to buy and sell products and services across a wide range of categories that includes automotive, real estate, jobs, electronics, home, and fashion.

AKHTABOOT

YOUSEF SHAMOUN

Akhtaboot is a leading online career network in the region. The HR software solutions provider caters to the full HR value chain from the “acquire” stage to the “retire” stage. All the software solutions provided are cloud based, easy to use, and customizable.

KHARABEESH

WAEL ATTILI

Kharabeesh is a digital creators platform specializing in the production of Arabic-language animated cartoons, music videos and talk shows that generally tackle political issues in the Arab world.

THE ONLINE PROJECT

RAMZI HALABY

The Online Project is a social media and digital agency working with leading local and multinational brands in UAE, Saudi Arabia and Jordan.

ABJJAD

EMAN HYLOOZ

Abjjad is an online Arabic social network for readers, writers, and publishers to rate, review, publish and sell eBooks.

CASHBASHA

SINAN TAIFOUR & FOUAD JERYES

CashBasha is an online e-commerce platform enabling users to shop from international online shopping sites including Amazon, ebay and AliExpress and pay in cash.

LITTLE THINKING MINDS

LAMIA TABBAA & RAMA KAYYALI

Little Thinking produces educational digital Arabic content for primary age children with the aim of enhancing children’s skills and learning outcomes, and increase their connectedness to the Arabic identity.

JAWAKER

MOHAMAD HAJ HASAN

Jawaker is the first Middle Eastern card gaming network. The platform hosts games including Jackaroo, Banakil, Baloot, Tarneeb, Trix and Hand.

MAWDOO3

RAMI AL QAWASMI & MOHAMMAD JABER

Mawdoo3 is a comprehensive online Arabic content publisher that provides premium quality Arabic content. Mawdoo3.com created more than 130 thousand unique articles to fill the gap in Arabic content online. Today, it has more than 36 Million unique users who visit the website monthly.

Article By Haya Issa
Venure Magazine

1,000 leaders to convene at Dead Sea Saturday for WEF

AMMAN — More than 1,000 leaders of government, business, civil society, faith and academia from across the world will take part in the 17th World Economic Forum (WEF) on the Middle East and North Africa that will kick off on April 6th, shedding light on climate change, peace and reconciliation, youth unemployment and the fourth industrial revolution, among other topics.

The forum, which will run through April 7th, is the 10th WEF meeting to be held in Jordan and the 17th in the region and will witness the participation of a group from the top 100 Arab starts-ups in a special session to discuss the fourth industrial revolution.

Held in partnership with the King Abdullah II Fund for Development (KAFD) at the Dead Sea, the forum will be held under the theme “Building New Platforms of Cooperation”. 

The event will focus on four transformational imperatives; shaping a new economic and social model for the region, environmental stewardship in the Arab world, finding common ground in a multiconceptual world and the fourth industrial revolution in the Arab world.

With the full support of Jordan and in the presence of Their Majesties King Abdullah and Queen Rania and HRH Crown Prince Hussein, the meeting will bring together leaders from Gulf Cooperation Council countries, the Levant and North Africa, as well as key international stakeholders from East Africa, Europe and the United States, according to a statement by the WEF e-mailed to The Jordan Times.

Entrepreneurial dialogue

For the second time, the WEF is partnering with the Bahrain Economic Development Board to bring 100 Arab start-ups to the meeting, under an initiative that aims to further integrate entrepreneurs into a national and regional dialogue on pressing challenges. 

More than 400 applicants representing 17 countries and spanning numerous sectors including finance, energy, health, environment, media and education have applied to take part in the event, according to the statement. 

Among the selected start-ups are Careem (UAE) — also included in the 2017 selection — which was recently sold for $3.1 billion; Coded (Kuwait), the first coding boot camps for the Arab world; Proximie (Lebanon), a company that uses augmented reality for surgeons to contribute remotely to clinical procedures; and Wahed (UAE), the world’s first halal investment platform.

They also include MonoJo (Jordan), a biotech company that uses camel milk to develop antibodies, and FalconViz, a company conducting a range of mapping, including that of cultural heritage sites, with autonomous drones.

Start-ups from Jordan taking part in the WEF also include Tarjama, which is specialised in providing a wide array of translation services and language solutions to global clients, with offices across the Middle East established in 2008. 

Nestrom, another Jordanian start-up taking part in the meet, is an agra-tech company focused on delivering high-end, easy-to-deploy agricultural software products and solutions, according to the WEF website.

Jordanian start-ups also include Tamatem, the leading mobile games publisher in the Arabic-speaking market, and Whyise, which is an impact analytics software solution that allows organisations to aggregate their data and analyse it for exponential impact, as well as map their operations against international frameworks — such as the UN sustainable development goals — and comply with frameworks such as the International Finance Corporation’s ESG (environment, social and governance) standards and GRI (Global Reporting Initiative) among others.

Representing young people, the WEF’s “Global Shapers” (aged between 20 and 30) and “Young Global Leaders” (under the age of 40), will take part in the discussions. Social entrepreneurs will also contribute to the dialogue on innovative local and regional action to address pressing problems.

Agenda

“The region is at a pivotal time of taking the bold decisions necessary to future-proof its societies and economies,” Mirek Dusek, deputy head of Centre for Geopolitical and Regional Affairs and member of the executive committee at the WEF, was quoted as saying in the statement.

“At this meeting, we will hold several strategic dialogues, with particular attention on the relationship between the public, private and civic sectors, the impact of the fourth Industrial Revolution on kills and jobs, and new initiatives to help resolve long-standing conflicts,” Dusek noted.

Chairman of KAFD’s Board of Trustees Alaa Batayneh said that “having Jordan host the WEF on the Middle East and North Africa for the 10th time reaffirms the importance of Jordan’s political and economic position within the region”, according to the statement.  

“The forum offers an international platform to highlight the priorities and plans of Jordan and the region, in the fields of development, energy, technology applications and natural resource management,” Batayneh added.

This year’s meeting is co-chaired by Khalid Al Rumaihi, chief executive of Bahrain’s Economic Development Board; Thani Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, UAE’s minister of climate change and environment; Rania A. Al Mashat, Egypt’s minister of tourism; Alain Bejjani, CEO of UAE-based Majid Al Futtaim Holding; Wafa Ben Hassine, MENA policy counsel at the US’ Access Now; Sumantra Chakrabarti, president of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development; Tony F. Chan, president of Saudi King Abdullah University of Science and Technology; and Sigrid Kaag, minister for foreign trade and development cooperation of The Netherlands.

Among the public figures taking part in the meeting are UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, President of Nigeria Muhammadu Buhari, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Armenian President Armen Sarkissian, Turkey’s First Lady Emine Erdogan, Afghanistan Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, Saudi Minister of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources Khalid Al Falih, UAE Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence Omar Al Olama, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Oman Yusuf Bin Alawi Bin Abdullah, Lebanese Deputy Prime Minister Ghassan Hasbani and Bahraini Foreign Minister Khalid Bin Ahmed Al Khalifa.

The meeting will also focus on highlighting long-term approaches to responding to systemic issues, the statement said.

“The Humanitarian Investing Initiative, launched at the forum’s annual meeting in Davos, will showcase innovative approaches to investing that respond to the long-term challenges of protracted humanitarian crises. Taking this long-term approach, other sessions will feature solution-based, forward-looking dialogues on issues of healthcare, energy, water, gender equality, the future of jobs, cybersecurity and more,” the statement added.

Article By Mohammad Ghazal
Jordan Times

How to publish your mobile gaming app successfully? Meet Tamatem!

Phone in hand, you scroll around different online platforms and suddenly notice a few ads here and there for historical wars, dystopian worlds or just car driving mobile games spoken in a language that surprisingly isn’t English. You observe with interest the language, and wonder when did Arabic mobile games become popular? Well, the increase in the representation of this content in our language is thanks to none other than Tamatem

Tamatem, which is an Arab word for tomato, is the leading mobile games publisher in the MENA market. They localize their games and enrich it with familiar culture for Arab gamers by partnering up with international studios and developers.

The founder, Hussam Hammo, started out Tamatem after his previous company, Wizards Production halted its works back in 2012. He remained resilient and determined though his peers became reluctant of supporting him in a path that they perceived as risky. Nonetheless, he was accepted into 500 Startups and Tamatem became the first Arab company to get into the program in 2013. This encouraged him to further pursue and persuade a few American-based investors successfully before moving back to Jordan and opening up their new offices. Some of the business’ most popular games are:VIP BalootShake the Metal OnlineShake the Metal: Rush and Death Road.

We asked Hussam about Tamatem and what he has in store for it: “Although we have been expanding rapidly, I expect more for Tamatem in 2019.” he shared, “We are launching a number of new games and opening up new offices for marketing and user support purposes around the region. As for the future, I wish to see Tamatem become the best workplace in the region. We have an incredible team that believes in our vision and cultivated a company culture that is simply unique in Jordan.” We wish Tamatem the best too!  

Hussam also shares with us a fun fact about their team: They’re a total of 55 employees that are all local Jordanians working across departments including Product Management, Marketing, Design, Public Relations, User Acquisition and Community & Support. But that’s not the exciting part yet! Hussam tells us that females make up 70% of Tamatem’s team and most of them are in senior positions. Amazing, right?!

According to Hussam, finding local talented people was not an easy task, as there is no awareness about the job prospects that could be found in the gaming industry. To solve this issue, the Tamatem team are currently teaching university students in Jordan about the job market and how the gaming industry can open up doors for them.

Before concluding, the founder Hussam shares with us some valuable advice to fresh-faced entrepreneurs: “Have an MVP that works to the best of its capability, and only after gaining traction for a period of 3 months or so, approach investors,” He states. “Always make sure your idea is defensible and isn’t a plagiarized version of another idea,” he advises.   

Learn more about Tamatem, and how you can become partners with them on their official websiteTwitter and Instagram

Article By MARYAM MALIK
Startup MGZN