Kuwaiti entrepreneurs who are interested can submit their applications for 'Beban' through the website until September 16.
During a ceremony at the Zain Innovation Campus (ZINC), the entrepreneurial reality TV show Beban has announced Zain Kuwait and Sabah Al Ahmad Center for Giftedness and Creativity (SACGC) as the official Kuwait Country Partners. This partnership will pave the way for Kuwaiti entrepreneurs to participate in the show’s third season, scheduled to air in January 2024.
The announcement took place during a ceremony held at ZINC’s headquarters in Shuwaikh and was attended by key representatives, including Waleed Al Khashti, Zain Kuwait’s Chief Corporate Affairs and Relations Officer, Neda Al Dehani, General Manager of Sabah Al Ahmad Center for Giftedness and Creativity, and Salman Matar, General Manager of Beban W.L.L. Also in attendance were teams and executives from all three partners.
Beban is a reality TV show aired on Shahid, the Arabic streaming platform, as well as several regional television channels. The programme offers entrepreneurs the opportunity to pitch their ventures to investors for immediate investment offers and strategic business opportunities. Beban is produced by Hope Ventures, the investment arm of Hope Fund, established by King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa of Bahrain.
The introduction of Kuwait as a country partner for season three of Beban marks a significant milestone, making the show the first regional private-public investment platform that facilitates opportunities for investment, expansion, and strategic growth for promising entrepreneurs across the region.
Through Beban, Zain and SACGC will provide 40 Kuwaiti entrepreneurs with the chance to undergo an intensive two-week training bootcamp at the Zain Innovation Campus (ZINC). This bootcamp will equip entrepreneurs with insights to enhance their business plans and prepare them to pitch their ventures to a panel of investors for strategic business development and equity investment on the TV show. Only five shortlisted Kuwaiti entrepreneurs will be selected from the group of 40 participants.
Commenting on the partnership, Waleed Al Khashti said: “Today, we’re absolutely thrilled to reach a new and exciting phase of our 13-year journey to support, empower, and embrace Kuwaiti entrepreneurs under the umbrella of our Zain Great Idea (ZGI) tech accelerator programme. Together with our strategic partners at SACGC, we proudly represent our nation in this leading regional program.”
“With this collaboration, we aspire to open entire new horizons to local entrepreneurs and startup owners, who are always known for their bright ideas and inspiring success stories that surpassed Kuwait’s geographical borders. We aim to offer them an exceptional regional experience to represent their country and compete with their peers from the GCC who share the same passion,” Al Khashti added.
Al Khashti continued: “This announcement also coincides with the much-anticipated kick-off of our 8th ZGI season, which has proven itself as one of the best initiatives of its kind in the region. We will be offering the opportunity for ZGI members to join the intensive Beban bootcamp that we will host at ZINC, which I’m sure will add a huge value to their journey towards excellence and success in the business world.”
Neda Al Dehani commented: “We invite Kuwait’s bright startup community to sign up and benefit from the unique exchange of experiences offered by this programme. One of SACGC’s top priorities is supporting local talents and shedding light on their successes on a regional level. By presenting their innovations in front of a panel of regional investors, local entrepreneurs will definitely gain invaluable insights and investment opportunities to take their businesses to the next level.”
Salman Matar explained: “We launched Beban as a regional investment platform to connect entrepreneurs with regional strategic investors to accelerate their growth into new markets. Today, after completing the second season and raising over $6m on the show, Beban has expanded to the GCC to ensure a borderless and seamless flow of investment opportunities across the region.”
“As we embark on the Beban season three journey, I am thrilled to have both Zain Kuwait and SACGC as the Kuwaiti Country Partners of the show, particularly given that both entities have been early advocates and enablers of innovation within the entrepreneurial sector in the region,” Matar concluded.
The third season of Beban is expected to feature 40 regional opportunities from Oman, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, and Kuwait. Kuwaiti entrepreneurs interested in participating can apply for Beban through the website until September 16.