The second edition of Sheraa's accelerator program is now accepting UAE and international entrepreneurs applications for its second cycle.
Sheraa, Sharjah’s official entrepreneurship center, is based at the American University of Sharjah and runs the Emirate’s flagship accelerator program, focusing on scaling innovative, high-growth ventures that drive economic diversification and job creation.
“Our second edition aims to attract pioneering startups from across the world, and in the process, strengthen Sharjah’s reputation as a thriving hub for entrepreneurship. This is in line with UAE’s Vision 2021, which establishes entrepreneurship as a vital enabler of the UAE’s transition to a knowledge-based economy,” said Najla Al-Midfa, general manager at Sheraa.
The invitation goes out to innovative, early-stage ventures that wish to use Sharjah as a launchpad to grow and scale their impact.
The selected startups will be supported with equity-free seed funding of up to $10,000, a free Sharjah-based trade license, rent-free office space at Sheraa, expert mentorship, legal assistance, and access to contracts in both the private and government sectors.
The teams will join a three-months training program launching in October this year. The program will end with a demo day, where startups pitch to experienced investors, partners, and key clients.
The program is supported by Air Arabia, Bee’ah and Crescent Enterprises who will partner with Sheraa for the second edition too.
“The second cycle of our Accelerator comes on the heels of the resounding success that we and our startups have enjoyed over the past months,” she added.
The first cohort which took place earlier in 2017 witnessed the launch of 10 startups across sectors such as the sharing economy, sustainable technology, art and design, Arabic content, education, artificial intelligence, blockchain, IoT, among others.
Some of the first round’s graduate startups achieved successful milestones: Juxtapiece has added to its client list entities such as Smart Dubai, Bee’ah, and Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq). Tayar works with government clients such as the Sharjah Police and the UAE’s Ministry of Health. Yalla Pickup raised AED 1 million (US$ 272,000).
“These successes demonstrate Sheraa’s reputation as the ideal launchpad for innovative early-stage ventures,” said Al-Midfa.
“We look forward to building a competitive second cohort, featuring innovative ventures that are working on solving pressing challenges across all sectors. Sheraa is committed to supporting teams that possess the drive and ambition to scale their disruptive business models, and develop them into success stories with global socio-economic impact,” she added.
The deadline for applications is August 31.
Click here to apply for the accelerator.