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Bahrain has been the global hub of entrepreneurship for a while now, and a fertile ground in which various startups are being perpetually born incubated and nurtured, until they take off on their own successfully.

You may know, StartUp Bahrain, Bahrain’s startup ecosystem which has been reliable in helping startups successfully as soon as they are founded, through providing them with suitable incubators and accelerating fitments.

You may also wonder, what is a startup ecosystem? A startup ecosystem is formed by a group of people, startups in various stages, and investors, all interacting within a system and taking place in a location (physical and/or virtual).

Two fundamental and vital elements of a sustainable startup environment are the accelerators and the incubators.

Accelerators

Startup accelerators —also known as seed accelerators— are fixed-term, cohort-based programs, that include mentorship and educational components and culminate in a public pitch event or demo day. They tend to advance the growth of existing startups.

Here are some accelerators in Bahrain’s startup ecosystem:

C5 Accelerate

C5 Accelerate is a London, Washington D.C., and Bahrain based technology investment firm. C5 Accelerate is developing a Cloud Accelerator Cluster in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and the United States, alongside Amazon Web Services. Its mission is to accelerate best-of-breed startups to meet the growth opportunity that is being created by the geographic expansion of AWS, the world’s leading cloud computing platform.

In efforts to grow the ecosystem, Hadyah Fathalla the Executive Director of C5 Accelerate is responsible of public and private sector business in MEA and is also in charge of developing innovative technology ventures.

C5 has also launched Cloud10 growth (Scalerator) platform for tech firms, which aims to help young technology industries to scale-up their businesses. The program manager behind it is Bader Sater, who worked extensively as part of a committee tasked to set Bahrain’s ICT strategy which led to Bahrain’s focus on building a startup ecosystem

C5 Accelerate is located in Fakhro Tower across from Bahrain City Centre. To learn more about it and the programs offered, check http://www.c5accelerate.com/.

Brinc

It is the first technology hardware accelerator in the region, where it helps hardware founders at every step of the way. From prototype to profit, Brinc has designed programs and services that support hardware founders throughout their journey. Its services range from BOM sourcing, R&D oversight, to full-scale contract manufacturing management.

In mid-2017, Batelco teamed up with Brinc to launch new operations and to support the growth of tech-driven entrepreneurs. Heading Brinc Mena is COO Yasin Aboudaoud, a Hong Kong born entrepreneur who has been in the global trading business for over 12 years.

Read more about Brinc and the opportunities they provide to startups on https://brinc.io/.

CH9

CH9 is a business accelerator located in Amwaj, dedicated to helping innovative enterprises grow by providing knowledge, investment support and access to local and regional markets. CH9 engages with young entrepreneurs, develops their vision, and improves their leadership skills through solid investment backup to build confidence and accelerate the growth of enterprises. Co-founded by Mohamed Altawash, and mentored by Reem Yusuf, Trey Goede, Dr. Abdulmajik Aljaber, Abdulrahim Fakhroo, Suzanne White, and many other eminent leaders in entrepreneurship.

It is important to highlight the enriching startup events and programs that were hosted in CH9, like Seedstars GCC, Seedstars MENA, 1001STartup Ideas, and many more! In addition to that, it has also incubated some successful startups in Bahrain like WNNA, Alkalati, Feels Digital, Fleek, and an ongoing list of innovative startups!

If you are interested in knowing more about the incubated startups and the Hub, visit their website http://chnine.com/.

Incubators

Many individuals still can’t differentiate between accelerators and incubators. An incubator simply aims to help new startup companies to develop through services. They are designed to accelerate the growth and success of entrepreneurial companies by providing business support resources, physical space, capital, coaching, and networking connections.

Rowad

The Rowad program provides entrepreneurs an access to Bahrain’s ecosystem through focusing on coaching, training, incubation, funding, mentoring, and networking. Located in the heart of Manama, the program is designed and managed by Bahrain Development Bank (BDB). It is set to empower entrepreneurs in starting their businesses and provide them with support from the earliest stage of idea conceptualization all the way to the stages of growth and maturity.

Consisting of a dynamic and inspiring team of coaches, who work towards empowering infinite possibilities, Areije Al Shakar Vice President and co-founder of Rowad program spends a lot of her time coaching and mentoring not only entrepreneurs, but the team she leads at BDB to create a pioneering entrepreneurial division.

Riyadat

Riyadat is an incubator center that is designed to support female entrepreneurs in the early phases of their businesses to help them develop, grow and kick-off their business!

Located in A’ali, Riyadat uses its unique aesthetic to house start-ups, and offers units to Bahraini women to showcase their businesses, in order to achieve both short-term and long-term success.

BBIC

The Bahrain Business Incubator Centre (BBIC) is an organization dedicated to supporting entrepreneurial businesses in Bahrain by providing physical premises as well as advisory and administrative services. BIBC aspires to promote entrepreneurial culture in Bahrain to enhance the socio-economic prosperity of the Kingdom.

BBIC was established in 2003 as the first mixed-use incubation center in the GCC. Since its establishment, the Center has been supporting the growth and sustainability of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Bahrain, through providing governmentally approved physical spaces for business to set and grow, and by tailoring facilities and services that are designed to increase the success rates.

Intrigued to learn more about Bahrain’s dynamic ecosystem? Click on StartUp Bahrain to discover more about the incubators, accelerators and the startup community. Remember you can even add your own business to the community!

Jenan Al-Mukharriq

Jenan Al-Mukharriq

A highly driven organizing member of the StartUp Bahrain ecosystem. And a Project Manager at Matter In Hand with a passion for content creation and empowering communities.