Egypt's entrepreneurial ecosystem looks to tackle future uncertainty



More hackathons, free services and "home-centered" offers take rise

During the critical 7th week in dealing with the COVID-19, known as the “coronavirus”, Egyptians are taking stricter measures to stay safe at home. Accordingly more startups have come up with diverse initiatives to support Egyptians in each aspect of their daily lives, and help them move forward, and other stakeholders are trying to find more innovative solutions to navigate the uncertainty of the future.

Here are some highlights from the ecosystems:

- StartEgypt, powered by Flat6Labs, launches “Corona Hackathon” with Egyptian Red Crescent, IFC, others

Flat6Labs-backed incubator StartEgypt announced a “Corona Hackathon” in partnership with the Egyptian Red Crescent, Yomken, the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the British Embassy in Cairo. The hackathon calls on Egypt’s innovators, entrepreneurs, scientists, engineers, product designers to hack three timely challenges faced by society today, with best solutions getting a chance to get a symbolic award of up to EGP 10,000. The challenges are safe public transport, myth-busting day-laborers and safe banknotes. Applications are open until March 30, 2020.

- Forasna allows companies to announce vacant job opportunities for free

To encourage Egyptians to stay at home during the spread of COVID-19, and support companies currently in need of employees, the recruitment platform Forasna is dedicating a new filter for work-from-home jobs, so that job seekers can secure a source of income while working safely from home. The move comes to also encourage companies that have similar opportunities to announce them on the Forasna website for free. Forasna is also collaborating with platform to provide Egyptians with a chance to learn new skills from home through online courses with a 100% discounted Promocode “Forasna-19”.

- ElCoach offers 30-day free premium body transformation program

Arabic fitness and nutrition app ElCoach has offered its 30-day premium subscription plan for free, which includes workout classes, nutrition plans, and connections to personal trainers and nutrition specialists. Using the Promo-code “StaySafe”, users can access AI-powered fitness programs that are prepared by local coaches, as well as nutrition plans prepared by local chefs. ElCoach has more than 50,000 monthly active users, and helped more than 6,000 people get in shape through its personalized body transformation programs.

- Vezeeta launches free medical consultations through phone calls

In efforts to support the stay at home safety measures, Vezeeta launched it’s  telehealth consultations in Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan, ensuring that the health and well-being of its patients remains uncompromised amid the current global healthcare crisis. Users can now consult with a doctor instantaneously through a ‘Call-Back’ feature available on the Vezeeta app and website, free-of-charge. This will also enable users to search for doctors by specialty, book a consultation, and rate and review their telehealth experience. They will also receive directions to refer to a hospital or medical center, if needed.

- Homzmart provides “Work from Home” kit, discounts

In order to help employees be more productive from home, online furniture shopping platform Homzmart dedicated a section on its website to “Work from Home” furniture items at up to 30% discounts. The items include desks, chairs and lighting units. Homzmart is an end-to-end online furniture shopping platform, providing consumers with professional home designers’ expertise, products and ideas to furnish their homes.

- Turbo One sanitizes cars at customers’ homes

First digital marketplace for automotive services Turbo One now offers cleaning and sanitization services for cars, at the convenience of their customers’ homes. In line with the #StayHomeStaySafe movement, the company allows users to order car sanitization service through the app or hotline, after which Turbo One sends a professional service provider with full equipment to the user’s address to conduct the sanitization. Turbo One offers a variety of automotive services through a qualified network of service providers.

- eddyPay lowers payment transaction fees to 2%

Fintech startup eddyPay announced that it would reduce the transaction fee on any payment through its application to 2%, down from the usual 2.5%. The effort comes as part of encouraging contactless and cashless payments, as well as to help businesses using the service navigate the current circumstances. eddyPay is a mobile application that allows businesses to receive their payments from home; using their mobile phone.

Last year, Egypt saw more deals, funding, investors and exits than ever before! Are you interested in keeping up with the story of one of MENA's hottest startup ecosystems? Purchase our 2019 Egypt Venture Investment Report HERE