February 13 – 14,2019Dubai

The Most Experiential
Tech Festival in the Middle East

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step start

STEP Start is the home base for founders, startups, and entrepreneurs to learn and share experiences and meet with investors. Startups get to participate in the Startup Basecamp, Mentor's Corner, Pitch Competition, and Investor Meetings.

What We Cover

 

STEP Start Speakers

More Speakers Coming Soon

Omar
Itani

FabricAID

Omar
Itani

FabricAID

Omar Itani started an award-winning waste-management company at the age of sixteen. Since then he continued to be civically engaged through entrepreneurship and social activism. Omar then dropped-out of university just before graduating from studying industrial engineering to startup FabricAID, a Lebanese social enterprise enabling underprivileged people to get decent clothing at extremely affordable prices while reducing fabric waste through increasing the efficiency of second-hand clothes collection, sorting and distribution. FabricAID the winner of the 2018 Global Social Venture Competition, sold more than 30,000 clothing items to more than 5,000 beneficiaries in the past few months.

Natalie
Sleiman

She loves tech

Natalie
Sleiman

She loves tech

Head of UAE for She Loves Tech, a global initiative showcasing the convergence of the latest trends in technology, entrepreneurship, innovation and the opportunities it creates for women, which includes the world’s largest startup competition focused on women and technology, boot camp and international conference series. Natalie, formerly, led the business development and strategic management of captive Insurance products for Audi and Volkswagen across the Middle East. She holds an Executive MBA from INSEAD and is part of the executive committee of the INSEAD National Alumni Association in the UAE, which is the business school’s second largest alumni group, globally. Natalie is passionate about empowering women in tech and keen on encouraging entrepreneurial potential through digitization, leveraging social media and their combined innovative impact on businesses.

Karl
Abouzeid

Sqwirl Holding

Karl
Abouzeid

Sqwirl Holding

A serial entrepreneur at heart, Karl started his career in the hospitality industry after graduating from UCCR Switzerland. After leaving hi marketing role at the Armani Hotel Dubai, Karl went on a six-month backpack tour of southeast Asia, where he found his entrepreneurial calling. Karl decided to come back to Beirut and create his first venture Aimpeeps, an app connecting hobbyists, that completed the Bader entrepreneurship program; followed by Planitair, a hotel and flights booking engine targeting the MENA region, and his latest venture Sqwirl Lab, Lebanon’s first startup studio.

Tammer
Qaddumi

VentureSouq

Tammer
Qaddumi

VentureSouq

Founding Partner of VentureSouq. Previously, he was Vice President of Private Equity at Waha Capital, a diversified investment company based in Abu Dhabi with assets of c.$3 billion. Prior to joining Waha, Tammer worked with UBS and HSBC in New York and Dubai, respectively. He served as a Fulbright Scholar in Damascus, Syria and worked with the Office of Presidential Personnel at the White House in Washington, D.C. Tammer holds a B.A. from Yale University and serves on the Board of Directors of Addax Bank in Bahrain and of the Yale Arab Alumni Association.

Dia
Haykal

MIT Technology Review Arabia

Dia
Haykal

MIT Technology Review Arabia

The Editor in Chief of MIT Technology Review Arabia, where she leads the editorial, content, localization operations for both print and online platforms. She holds a BA in Business Administration from the American University of Beirut; two Master’s degrees in Corporate Communication, and in Visual Media, from IE Business School in Madrid. Dia’s experience in technology content goes back to her role as the founding editor-in-chief of Popular Science Arabia, where she has led the project launch including the website and the bi-monthly magazine. As head of content at Haykal Media, she’s overseen the creation and localization of hundreds of thousands of words every month.

Rami
Salman

Voicera

Rami
Salman

Voicera

VP of Growth at Voicera, formerly the founder and CEO of Wrappup (acquired by Voicera). Rami is a lifelong entrepreneur, starting his first company at 13 years old. After graduating as a Mechanical Engineer from the University of Maryland, he joined the world of management consulting at Bain & Company. He came up with the idea for Wrappup while still a consultant, needing a tool to help manage the 7 different client teams in back to back meetings everyday. He took the idea to a hackathon where he met his technical co-founders. What they managed to build in 24 hours not only won the Global Demo Day in Silicon Valley, but Wrappup went on to raise a first round of funding led by Beco Capital & 500 Startups, and was eventually acquired by Voicera.

Alexandra
Talty

Forbes

Alexandra
Talty

Forbes

A writer exploring the world on a journalist's paycheck. From crypto currency to motorcycle gangs, adventure always finds her on the road. She writes for Forbes, Outside Magazine, Playboy + AFAR, among others.

STEP Start Ecosystem Partners