Bahrain Startup Ecosystem at Glance

Sabina Babayeva
3 min readNov 23, 2019


Brief overview on Bahrain startup ecosystem in the framework of 2019 World Entrepreneurs Investment Forum, 18th Arab Businessmen and Investor Conference and Young Business Hub Startup Summit organized by ICYF and UNIDO. Series of international events where Hackquarters was represented with our 54 tech alumni startups from 25 countries.

As scaling up is the most challenging part of any startup business it was extremely important for us to provide access for our startups to the ecosystem of Bahrain; and MENA in general. Especially for the startups coming from Turkey and region covering OIC countries MENA and Bahrain in particularly is quite attractive in terms of new market access. At the same time accessing infrastructure directly from the ground benefiting out of all opportunities and resources provided by the Government and ecosystem has additional advantages for entrepreneurs. That was the reason why the Hackquarters team reached out for all our partners in Bahrain. Providing tangible support for the startups planning to access new markets and facilitate partnership and further collaboration Hackquarters team took an initiative powered by ICYF to invite major ecosystem players to one networking panel.

Bahrain Startup Ecosystem Networking Session

Here, special thanks go to Pakiza Abdulrahman, Business Development Manager at Economic Development Board of Bahrain (EDB), who supported Hackquarters team from the planning stage of the event and helped to establish a good relationship with major institutions, Venture Capitals, and Startup Accelerators. After brief intro panel participants joined the open discussion and Q&A session from the audience; and networking with startups face to face.

The panel started with the introduction of Simon Galpin, Managing Partners at EDB. Economic Development Board of Bahrain provides guidance for each new or expanding company, small or large, through every step of the investment journey. EDB team is ready to help each entrepreneur or company pursue local, regional or global business opportunities in Bahrain. Bahrain EDB can help you benefit from our business infrastructure, find a location for your business, discover talent, navigate any legal requirements.

Sabina Babayeva, Hackquarters; Simon Galpin, EDB; Jenan Al-Muharriq, Startup Bahrain; Saleh Abbas, Flat6Labs

Jenan Al-Muharriq from Startup Bahrain shared success story of the organization and strategy in the region. Startup Bahrain is the national movement to promote tech startups and entrepreneurship in Bahrain and the region.

Saleh Abbas, Marketing and Outreach Manager at Flat6Labs Bahrain share experience directly from the ground in particularly how Flat6Labs is dealing with startups. Launched in partnership with Tamkeen State Fund, Flat6Labs Bahrain is an accelerator program aiming to help accelerate the growth of local and international startups contributing into rapidly growing venture capital ecosystem of Bahrain. It would be unfair not to mention Ryaan Sharif and Noor Bahman for their support and guidance in Bahrain.

Marwa Aleskafi, Brinc

Marwa Aleskafi, Head of Acceleration Program at Brinc joined the networking session to meet with IoT and TelCo startups. Brinc Batelco IoT Hub is constantly contributing to the Bahrain ecosystem by fostering the growth of IoT (the Internet of Things) entrepreneurship providing co-working space and IoT acceleration for the hardware startups as well as supporting with the funding.



Sabina Babayeva