At San Francisco’s TechCrunch Disrupt conference this week, the entrepreneurship platform AstroLabs announced their collaboration with Google for an addition to the Dubai’s ever growing plethora of coworking spaces.
Selected as the newest member of the tech giant’s global Tech Hub network, AstroLabs Dubai will be located in Dubai’s DMCC Free Zone, and will combine a coworking space and educational center.
Renderings of the space to open in 2015. Cozy.
Expected to open in early 2015, the tech hub will be the first in the MENA region for Google, and is intended to work as “an ideal location for startups to scale their ventures in new markets,” says Bridgette Beam, Senior Manager at Google for Entrepreneurs, in a statement. “We see enormous potential for them [AstroLabs] to help startups across the MENA take their ideas to the global stage.”
AstroLabs has already created a successful network of startups in the Middle East, having organized events in Dubai, Amman, and Riyadh. In the last year alone, the platform has helped over 100 startups across the MENA region through their Scaling Online Startups acceleration program.
Can I sit with you?
AstroLabs, created by Namshi founders Louis Lebbos and Muhammed Mekki, has been partners with the Google for Entrepreneurs program since last year’s launch. “This unique relationship has already impacted the vision and architectural design of the space,” says Mekki. “We have seen how 1871 in Chicago, Capital Factory in Austin, and Communitech in [Ontario, Canada] each successfully built centers for entrepreneurial activity in their respective cities. We’ll be bringing best practices to Dubai.”
Covering 6,500 square feet, AstroLabs Dubai hub will feature an “advanced mobile device development lab,” codesigned by Google, with the aim of helping developers create apps specific to the region, perhaps an attempt to leverage the region’s high rates of smartphone penetration.
The last two years have seen a surge in co-working spaces catering to Dubai’s startup and entrepreneurial community, with places like MAKE Business Hub, Impact Hub, the Pavilion, and Shelter springing up, to name just a few. Stay tuned for more on how AstroLabs new coworking space will differentiate itself from its competitors.