Strategic tieup launched in Riyadh with Google to empower 100 tech startups

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Riyadh-based The Garage launched a strategic partnership with Google for Startups on Wednesday to support and empower more than 100 emerging technology companies around the world annually, reported Saudi Press Agency (SPA).

This partnership will help ensure that The Garage and its startups join a network of the best startup accelerators programs in Latin America, Africa, Europe, and Asia.

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The partnership with Google for Startups was announced during the fourth edition of The Garage event held in Riyadh, with the participation of more than 300 people interested in the entrepreneurship sector.

The aim of the partnership is to implement four business accelerators annually to enable 100 digital and technology startups and attract them to open their headquarters in the Kingdom.

This comes in accordance with the goals of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 to develop the digital economy.

This partnership will also enhance the role of The Garage -- which was launched during the LEAP 2022 conference last February -- in developing and empowering entrepreneurs and emerging companies in the technical and digital sectors.

On the occasion, the Saudi Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Eng. Abdullah bin Amer al-Sawaha, stressed that this partnership with Google for Startups is an additional confirmation of the Kingdom’s position as a regional hub for technology and innovation.

The Minister said that Saudi Arabia is the largest technology market in the region with a volume exceeding $40 billion, and a pivotal center for attracting talent and digital innovation.

The partnership between The Garage and Google for Startups) is part of the Kingdom’s efforts to empower male and female entrepreneurs to continue regional leadership through innovative digital solutions and applications.

The Garage project is the fruit of cooperation between the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology, and the Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming, and Drones.

The Garage project works as a business model that combines business incubators and accelerators with everything that technology companies need for success and growth, as it includes three main elements: The Garage Disrupt, which is a monthly event that brings emerging technology companies together with investors and in the presence of government and private sectors; and Garage Plus, which is considered a global business accelerator; and The Garage headquarters, which provides male and female entrepreneurs with all the tools necessary for the success of their projects.

The partnership focuses on The Garage's business accelerator program known as Garage Plus as the team seeks to build an accelerator program that competes with global accelerators.

Dr. Mounir el-Desouki, the President of King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology, expressed his happiness with this partnership. “Since we announcing The Garage project, we have been striving to provide the best for the community of entrepreneurs, and our partnership with Google for Startups represents the best step to achieve this as it guarantees our startups the access to world-leading trainers and mentors in their fields, in addition to enhancing their development through Google’s support services,” he said.

Faisal al-Khamisi, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming, and Drones, said that this partnership is an extension of the vision we set when establishing The Garage, and the role it plays in supporting entrepreneurs in the digital and technical sectors to achieve the Kingdom’s vision of making Riyadh the regional technical hub for the Middle East.

Salim Obeid, the regional officer for developer relations in the Middle East and North Africa at Google, expressed his happiness at the cooperation with The Garage to contribute to supporting local startups in the Kingdom and enabling them to develop at the local and regional levels. “We aspire through the Google for Startups program to encourage startup communities around the world to benefit from each others' expertise and share knowledge and resources for growth.”

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