Academi acquires Saudi startup for 3.5 mill SAR

Academi, have acquired The Start-up Gate for SAR3,500,000 on the 1st of November, 2019. The acquisition was announced within the Badir Program for Technology Incubators, a Saudi national program under King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST), Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

As one of the first Saudi start-ups focused on virtual education through developing the latest technologies; Academi identified a core advantage in their mutual goal and vision with The Start-up Gate, a virtual acceleration & mentorship platform that helps entrepreneurs to plan, lunch, and grow their business ideas. The Start-up Gate’s use of educational online platforms focused on the emerging youth segment, which overlaps directly with Academi’s target audience. The purpose of empowering individuals to use e-learning techniques is the core of both startups.

The Startup Gate's co-founding team Mr. Wael Altorabi and Mrs. Alaa Bekdash have made tremendous work in a relatively short amount of time only 10 months to be precise. They were able to scale up their team up to 7 members and build their customer base to over 10,000 users worldwide with over 59% of customers are actively interacting with their product on a daily basis completing over 1,700 mentorship calls.

“My life summary at the age of 22 was a university drop out, failed in 8 companies and in over 2 million riyals in debt. However, I also realised that being able to touch a person’s heart by inspiring them to become better is my mission and I couldn't find a greater way of doing just that, except by educating and mentoring them” said Wael Mohammed Altorabi, CEO of The Startup Gate.

On the other hand, Academi is considered highly effective and efficient with regards to team building, IT development, and fundraising. The founders of both startups acknowledged the complexity behind entrepreneurship in e-learning and the high competitiveness of the EdTech industry. Thus, the integration of both teams came for the purpose of completing some identified gaps and complementing strengths that would accelerate the growth in the EdTech field while simultaneously working on something we are all greatly passionate about.

Now that an agreement has been reached for this acquisition, the wider team has strengths in IT Development, Operational Management, Sales & Marketing, and Leadership. Both companies envision a world where everyone, can find the educational help at their convenience, at the click of a button.

“Academi's main goal is to enable people to invest in themselves, it is impossible to do so without the belief that our human capital is our greatest value, today, our human capital has never been stronger.” said Ziyad Binsulaiman, CEO of Academi.