Techstars Startup Weekend RAK'19

    Thursday, April 11 - 13, 2019

  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Speakers
  4. Judges
  5. Coaches and Mentors
  6. Sponsors
  7. Organizing Team
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Techstars Startup Weekend RAK'19

Thursday, April 11 - 13, 2019

Thursday, April 11 - 13, 2019
Event starts at 6:30 pm

American University of Ras Al Khaimah
American University of Ras Al-Khaimah Road
PO Box 10021
Ras Al Khaimah, NA PO Box 10021

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Your idea in 54 hours

Do you have an idea you'd like to pursue or a problem you'd like to solve but don't know where to start or who to start with?

Techstars Startup Weekend is the place to look for a team, create a prototype of your idea, validate your business idea, and receive feedback from experienced entrepreneurs, all in one weekend.

What do you need to bring?

Lots of energy! You'll pitch your own idea or listen to others, then vote on the most interesting ideas and form teams with diverse skill sets. You can come with friends, but you’ll get the full experience if you participate in separate teams. Remember, it’s all about the team.

Your idea should be something you have not previously worked on. The idea you pitch and the problem you set out to solve can span social, educational, financial, environmental, or other issues. Over the course of the weekend you'll be challenged to create a prototype of your MVP, or minimum viable product, that fits the needs of your target customer. You'll get feedback, iterate, and likely pivot your approach entirely! Important: You cannot have worked previously on your idea.

Techstars Startup Weekend is a full weekend long experience. Your ticket includes:
  • 7 full (and delicious) meals over the course of the weekend
  • Benefits and discounts from our global partners
  • One-on-one time with amazing mentors
  • A new network of developers, designers, and entrepreneurs eager, like you, to change the world.
  • All the internet and coffee you can consume.

Watch the video below to see what you can expect, and if you’re feeling inspired click on the “Buy Ticket” button now!

Still have questions, feel free to reach us at

Don’t wait any longer and join the Techstars Startup Weekend movement!

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Thursday April 11th

6:30 pm
Arrive at the venue and get checked in

7:00 pm
Dinner & Networking
Eat food, share ideas, practice pitches, get to know fellow participants

7:20 pm
Welcome & Speakers
Review agenda for the weekend and introduce speakers, coaches, and community leaders

7:30 pm
Pitches Start
Optionally line up to give your pitch

9:00 pm
Attendees vote for the top pitches

9:15 pm
Form Teams
Teams start forming and discussing ideas

10:00 pm
Begin Work
Start to formalize teams and take an inventory of skills. Be honest, and direct about what resources and skills are needed for the weekend. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Friday April 12th

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

9:30 am
Begin Work
Teams formed and setting up workspace for the weekend

12:00 pm

1:00 pm
After-lunch check-in, status reports, call for help

2:00 pm
Coach Meetings
Coaches help teams one-on-one. They are here to help!

6:30 pm

7:30 pm
After-dinner check-in, status reports, call for help

10:00 pm
Finished for the day. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Saturday April 13th

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

10:00 am
Coaches arrive. Final opportunity to ask questions

12:00 pm

12:30 pm
Coach Meetings
Coaches arrive… ASK QUESTIONS

3:00 pm
Presentation Prep & Tech Check
Final hours of worktime should be focused on perfecting your presentation, tech-check for final presentations also takes place

4:00 pm

5:00 pm
Final Presentations

7:30 pm
Judging & Awards

8:30 pm

9:00 pm
Go Home!


Rehan Rizvi
Destination Strategy Senior Management at Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority

Experienced Management Consulting professional with a demonstrated history of working in the hospitality, corporate real estate and tourism industry. Skilled in Negotiation, Feasibility Studies, Asset Management, Project Management, Hospitality, Tourism and Leisure Industry. Strong consulting background with a Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) focused in International Business/Trade/Commerce from ICFAI.

Event Judges

Ghanim Al Falasi
Senior Vice President of People Happiness and Innovation Corporate Services Vice Chairman of Smart City Project Committee Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority

Ghanim Al Falasi was appointed in 2011 as the Senior Vice-President of People Happiness and Innovation of Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority (DSOA). Ghanim brings with him extensive knowledge and know-how in the ICT sector through his previous role as Vice-President of the ICT Unit at Dubai Airports where he provided executive, technological and enterprise administrative leadership employment.
In his earlier association with Dubai Airports, Ghanim successfully established an ICT directorate for DCA based on a study conducted to identify and enhance Dubai Airports ICT infrastructure and ICT services required for the delivery of outstanding performance. Al Falasi also worked for several governmental organizations including the UAE Ministry of Defence, UAE Armed Forces, and the Central Military Command
Heading two departments in DSOA, including: People Happiness & Innovation; Al Falasi was mandated to develop and drive strategic plans for People Happiness as well as innovation across the organization.
In 2013, Ghanim was appointed as the Vice Chairman of the Smart City Project Committee at Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority.
Ghanim holds a BS degree in Computer Science from California State University of Hayward, USA. Moreover, he is also holding a Chief Innovation Officer “CCInO” Certification from LEAD, Organization & Relation Systems Coaching Certification from ORSC, and most recently a certification from Neurolink-USA for being a Brain & Emotional Intelligence Practitioner.

Amal Ibrahim
Assistant Professor, Innovation and Entrepreneurship Expert, Director of the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center at University of Sharjah

A dynamic entrepreneurial force and academic, with 13 years of experience in both public and private sectors of which, 6 years in academia and 7 years in high management. A flexible, creative yet organized thinker, with considerable business achievements.
Experienced business development individual, headed a department consists of a business development section at the economic development department of Sharjah. As a visionary entrepreneur I founded Cardiff Management Consultant and training. International labor organization certified young business advisor, participated in the Cairo business adviser workshop. Certified mentor and business development consultant. certified MIT strategy development with implication of AI. MOE -Stanford university innovation and entrepreneurship course ambassador. 

Joseph Wallis
Dean of School of Business at the American University of Ras Al Khaimah

Professor Joseph L. Wallis currently serves as Dean of the School of Business at the American University of Ras Al Khaimah.Prior to assuming this position, he was a Professor of Economics and Public Administration at the American University of Sharjah (2003-2018) during which time he served as Head of the Department of Management (2005-2016).  He also played a lead role in processes through which the School of Business Administration in this institution gained initial accreditation in 2011 with the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) and subsequent re-accreditation with this body in 2016.Before his appointment at the American University of Sharjah, Prof. Wallis was a faculty member in the Departments of Economics at the University of Otago in New Zealand from 1987 to 2003 and Rhodes University in South Africa from 1984 to 1987.  During his academic career which commenced after the completion of his PhD in Economics at Rhodes University in 1984, he was able to launch a program of scholarly research and professional consulting that has become increasingly cross-disciplinary and now encompasses the areas of economics, public administration, public policy, leadership and ethics.  This is currently reflected in a publication record, cited over 2000 times by Google Scholar, that includes five favorably reviewed scholarly books by reputable UK publishers (Market Failure, Government Failure, Leadership and Public policy; The Political Economy of Local Government: Leadership, Reform and Market Failure; The Political Economy of the Voluntary Sector: A Reappraisal of the Comparative Advantage of Voluntary Organizations; Reform and Leadership in the Public Sector; and An International Handbook of Public Management Reform) as well as over ninety refereed articles including those in journals such as World Development, Governance, Public Administration; Public Policy and Administration; Internet  Research and Public Management Review.  Prof. Wallis is also an experienced university teacher having taught courses in public economics, public choice, macroeconomics, leadership, business ethics and public policy and delivered executive training courses mainly in the areas of leadership and public policy.

AbdulHaleem Muhaisen
Economic Consultant, Ras Al Khaimah Department of Economic Development

Abdulhaleem currenly serves as an Economic Consultant at the Ras Al Khaimah Department of Economic Development.

Coaches and Mentors

H.E. Saeed Al Nazari
Director General at Federal Youth Authority & Founder of Qada Leadership Club and Institute

Saeed Al Nazari is the Director General of Federal Youth Authority at the UAE Government, Executive Director of The Youth Office at the UAE Prime Minister’s Office, Chief Strategy Officer at the Arab Youth Center and the first Global Innovation Ambassador for the Global Innovation Management Institute. Al Nazari Managed 50+ National Strategic Projects. He worked on Projects Management in The Executive Office of H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. He also works as consultant to some enterprises bringing with him extensive experience in Entrepreneurship, Innovation, Human Resources, Corporate Happiness, Strategic Media and Projects Management.

Al Nazari was chosen as a Federal Member in the first Emirates Youth Council, Global Shaper in the World Economic Forum, Board Director in the International Social Media Club’s Board of Directors in the UAE, Board Vice President in the UAE’s International Institute of Business Analysis’s Board of Directors and Board Member of the Alumni Board Committee in Dubai Men’s College. He is also a member of the World Student Organizing Community (WSOC).

Al Nazari studied Masters in Leadership & Entrepreneurship, Bachelor in Business Administration from Higher Colleges of Technology and Foreign Policy from New York University. Al Nazari is also a graduate from the Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Scholers Program in New York University, a unique international leadership program. He is also a graduate from the Promising Leaders Program in the Republic of Mauritius.

Al Nazari was awarded Annual Mubadala Youth Award, GCC Youth award from Emirates Foundation, Innovation Award from Abu Dhabi’s Crown Prince’s Office, Annual Director Leadership Award & Annual Business Program Award from Higher Colleges of Technology, Social Media Award from Du and many other Entrepreneurship awards from different entities. He is also a high rank winner in many competitions such as Young Entrepreneurs Competition and Emirates Drones for Good competition.

Petar Stojanov
Co-founder at Ebtikar

Dr. Petar has navigated multiple careers across three continents, from academic research scientist and lecturer in Australia, to corporate technical consultant in Germany, before settling in the UAE as a management consultant and entrepreneur.

In 2016, Petar founded Ebtikaar, a boutique innovation advisory. In less than a year, Ebtikaar has executed a portfolio of successful projects across the UAE, including the region’s first academically supported entrepreneurship accelerator mentorship program, as well as building entrepreneurship and innovation competencies in the Dubai Government under the highly acclaimed EXPO and Dubai 10X initiatives, as well as developing innovation competencies with the UAE Ministry of Education. Nominated for the 2017 Arabian Business Mentor of the Year award, Petar is a contributing writer for Entrepreneur ME, Arabian Business and Inc. Arabia and regularly speaks on his favoured topic; the
Science of Disruptive Innovation.

Hisham Safadi
Founder and CEO at UDENZ

Dr. Hisham is an entrepreneur, qualified dentist, knowledgeable lecturer and motivational coach. He is an experienced medical facility manager and an accomplished health care insurance and investment professional with 9+ years of diversified in 
- Identification and negotiation of business opportunities to achieve organizational objectives.
-Providing healthcare advisory and managerial experience within the healthcare sector, providing strategy for the medical oversight for creating new departments and marketing services on national and international scale.
- setting the strategic direction and priorities within the context of the healthcare investment projects and new business start-up in this sector.
-Teaching and leading people to enhance patient experience and improving leadership style through education, coaching and training.

Morrad Irsane
CEO Co-Founder of Melltoo

Morrad Irsane is the co-founder and CEO of Melltoo, a peer-to-peer marketplace for secondhand with door to door delivery. Morrad is a lifelong entrepreneur, having founded multiple businesses in the past, including two successful prior exits internationally. As an active participant in the UAE startup ecosystem, Morrad regularly engages with other entrepreneurs to build bridges and strengthen networks. He loves to meet new entrepreneurs so reach out!

Zakaria Al-Qudah
Associate Professor and Program Coordinator at American University of Ras Al Khaimah

Zakaria is the Associate Professor and Program Coordinator at American University of Ras Al Khaimah. Before this Zakaria was Professor in Yarmouk University, Jordan. 

Laura Toma
CEO & Founder | Grey Matter

Laura Toma has over 9 years of experience as education and communication consultant in several countries across two continents. She has facilitated educational experiences through mentoring, training and complex learning programs for the full spectrum of organization, from NGOs to government entities, from startups to SMEs, from schools to universities.

Syed Karim
CEO & Co-founder | Caravan

Love technology, design and problem solving. Urban Mobility Enthusiast. In less fancy terms, I like buses.

Leading Caravan, a young startup in the transportation technology space. The goal of Caravan is to help people find the best private bus for their work and study commute so that they can travel in an economical, efficient and comfortable manner. 

Udit Datta
Strategy & Financial Analysis Senior Manager at Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority

Senior Manager - Strategy & Financial Analysis at Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority

Event Sponsors, and Partners

The Techstars Startup Weekend RAK'19 team is grateful for the support of local community partners without whom this event would not be possible.
Learn how to become a sponsor here.


Organizing Team

Techstars Startup Weekend Ras Al Khaimah is 100% led by volunteer community leaders.
Learn how to get involved here

  • Ayman
  • Marwan
  • Abeer
  • Saqr
    Al Qassimi
  • AbdulHalim


Mohamed Nawaz Muallim
CEO & Co-founder | trift

Mohamed Nawaz is the cofounder of a tech travel startup that aims to bridge the cultural gap 

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