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TechCrunch inaugurated the first Startup Battlefield for MENA-based founders on Oct 3, 2018 at Lebanon’s Beirut Digital District. It was a day-long event that included a host of activities such as workshops, fireside chats, panel discussions, and of course, the startup competition.

The fireside chats and panel discussions were full of renowned business leaders across different sectors. Some of the big names to have added charm to the event include the likes of Ogero CEO Imad Kreidieh; Jennifer Fong, the head of Facebook Developer Circles Programs (MENA); and Careem founder Magnus Olsson, among others.

Panels comprising highly esteemed business leaders including Omar Christidis (CEO at Arabnet), Menna Abdelrahman (Senior Associate at Endure Capital), and Karim Hussein (Managing Partner at Algebra Ventures), took charge as 15 participating startups pitched their ideas and innovations.

The pitches were segmented into three rounds with each round being judged by a different panel of judges. At the end of the pitches, all the judges sat together and decided the five best performing teams to reappear on stage.

After another round of the closely contested showdown, the judges picked BuildInk (Lebanon) as the winner while the runner-up trophy went to Synkers (Lebanon). With this victory, BuildInk has now qualified to participate in TechCrunch Disrupt San Francisco.