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TiE initiative for women entrepreneurs

24 Jun 2020

A platform that aims to unite and support startups led by female entrepreneurs is offering a prize money of US$100,000 and a unique launch pad for the winners in Oman and the MENA region.  

The Dubai chapter of The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) announced its official participation in TiE Women, a global initiative dedicated to empowering women entrepreneurs across the globe. Through the TiE Women initiative, TiE Dubai aims to provide budding women entrepreneurs in Oman and the MENA region with a platform to collaborate and showcase their business potential.  

Under the TiE Women initiative, a series of chapter-level start-up support programmes for Women Entrepreneurs will be conducted, culminating into a regional Women 2020 pitch competition. Female entrepreneurs with businesses that have an interesting business idea and match entry criteria will be eligible for the title and participate in the Grand Finale.  

Ziad Matar, president of the Dubai Chapter of TiE, said, “We are delighted to be part of the TiE Women 2020 Pitch competition, an insightful platform that unites our global network and supports startups led by female entrepreneurs. According to research reports, just one in seven investments in the Arab World go into female founded businesses, we all recognise the challenges women face when accessing funding and financial support. By bringing together a global network of entrepreneurs, investors, mentors, and a prize money pool of US$100,000, we will provide a unique launch pad for the winners. We look forward to seeing healthy competition and rewarding exceptional women leaders.” 

The 2020 Pitch Competition offers early and late stage women entrepreneurs across the globe an opportunity to pitch their business idea to their local TiE chapter and avail access to mentors who will guide and train them for a few months. Finalists from each chapter will be invited to attend the  Women 2020 finals in Dubai, UAE, and will have an opportunity to be part of the Grand Finale Pitch with a chance to win US$100,000 worth prize money and other valuable prizes, as well as investor support.  

The Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) Women Entrepreneurship Report 2018/2019 states that the largest gender gap in established business ownership is found in the MENA at over 40 percent. Yet despite the gender gap, the GEM Women Entrepreneurship Report states that the highest rates of women’s entrepreneurial intentions were reported in the MENA at 36.6 per cent, highlighting a trend of younger women founding companies in countries like UAE and Saudi Arabia amongst others. Moreover, the MENA region shows the largest increases in women’s necessity motives for entrepreneurship at 35 percent.  

“There is so much untapped potential in the Arab World, and by empowering women to go into business and rewarding aspiring female leaders, we will ensure global economic gains and a competitive knowledge economy in line with UAE’s 2021 Vision,” added Matar. 

The TiE Women initiative is open to registered businesses founded or led by women across the MENA region. Participants can submit their nomination online on To be accepted, participating startups can apply for the early stage or late stage category and need to be established for seven years or less. 

Nominations will be open from June 1 to August 1, and twenty businesses will be shortlisted to participate in a live online pitch. Winners will be selected by a panel of independent jury members comprising successful entrepreneurs, investors, corporate honchos, and exceptional women leaders. Three shortlisted businesses will also be nominated in September for an accelerator programme, to be run locally for three months, where each business entity will receive personalised coaching and mentorship from renowned and experienced mentors. 

The finalist will participate in the final global event in December with a chance to win valuable prizes and support from mentors and investors.     

(Businesses founded or led by women can submit their entries from June till August. For more details on how to apply, visit:

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