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Zain Group and Community Jameel unveil TV commercial to drive aspiring entrepreneurs
November 10, 2015, 12:46 pm

Zain Group, a leading mobile telecom innovator across the Middle East and Africa in partnership with Community Jameel International, the Corporate Social Responsibility arm of Abdul Latif Jameel Group, announces the launch of an inspiring television commercial inviting applicants to come forward and register their interest and ideas in taking part in the ninth edition of the MIT Enterprise Forum (MITEF) Arab Startup Competition before the 4 January, 2016 deadline.

The competition, which is organized by the MITEF for the Pan Arab Region, is based on supporting and boosting innovation worldwide and engaging aspiring entrepreneurs in mentorship and networking.

The impactful television commercial, produced in both Arabic and English versions, will be telecast across regional satellite TV channels and will be available across all of Zain Group, Jameel Community and MITEF Pan Arab Region respective online platforms.

The video highlights a number of the innovative ideas that have been successful in previous years of the competition, which then went on to be commercialized,  aiming to encourage others to take the initiative and set new standards of creativity across all industries. These ideas include the discovery of a solution for fast drying cement in Saudi Arabia; the establishment of an exclusive online Middle East photo library in Jordan; the creation of a cloud system for faster rendering in Bahrain; a device that replicates movement in 3D in Iraq; set up of the first medical directory in Sudan; invention of a device for remote cardiac supervision in Lebanon; the first online educational portal in Kuwait; and the launch of a service for the packaging and sale of pre-ordered food in Morocco.

The commercial ends with the words, ‘Be the next Arab success story’, which is a rallying call for young people around the region to be inspired and come forward with their startup ideas that could change the world.  The English and Arabic versions can be seen on: 

Commenting on the launch of the television commercial, Zain Group CEO, Scott Gegenheimer said: “Ideas and the ability to turn them into something useful and sustainable has been the success story of modern man. This television commercial highlights some of the actual businesses that have been created out of thoughts from the minds of talented young people, and we hope that it inspires a next wave of young entrepreneurs to heed the call and submit their applications to this year’s MIT Enterprise Forum Arab Startup Competition.”

Commenting on Community Jameel International’s support, President Fady Jameel said: “As a founding partner of the MITTEF Arab startup competition, we're deeply committed to creating a fair and inclusive environment where all inviting applicants can come forward and register their interest and ideas. We will continue to work closely with our partners to promote and encourage young entrepreneurs.” He added: “We’re proud to be a company dedicated to volunteering in the community; the goal of our commitment is to reconnect ‘opportunity’ to pathways that lead to employment.”

For her part, Hala Fadel, Chair of the board of MITEF Pan Arab said: “We are delighted with the launch of an inspiring television commercial that celebrates the commercialized and successful ideas of previous competition participants, one we hope will inspire many other (aspiring) entrepreneurs to apply to this year’s edition. We look forward to helping them establish and grow viable businesses by providing them with cash prizes, top-notch training, mentorship, networking, and media exposure, and to sharing the next wave of success stories with the world.”

This year’s competition includes three different tracks: Ideas, Startups, and Social Entrepreneurship, with total prize money on offer in excess of US$150,000. Each of the three tracks will award the first three ranked winners with cash prizes in addition to many other benefits including: top tier training, mentorship, coaching, media exposure, and great networking opportunities.

The competition’s website  opened for applications on 6 October, 2015 with the deadline for receipt on 4 January, 2016. Informative roadshows promoting the competition will be held in Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Kuwait, Morocco, Palestine, Qatar, Sudan and the UAE, and seventy semi-finalist teams will be announced on 1 February, 2016.

The semi-finalists will be invited to attend pre-bootcamp activities scheduled to take place in February and March, 2016 in Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, and the UAE. The competition will culminate in a five-day event in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia from 11 – 15 April, 2016, with the announcement of the competition winners scheduled to take place during the final award ceremony on 14 April,  2016, with a one-day MIT Technology Review Pan Arab conference being held on 15 April, 2016.

The 2014/2015 eighth edition of the competition that saw the final ceremony held in Kuwait, received an outstanding 4,275 individual and team applications (representing a record participation of over 12,000 entrepreneurs) from 21 Arab countries.

For more information on this year’s MIT Enterprise Forum Arab Startup Competition eligibility and judging criteria, as well as the planned roadshows, please visit

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