Top 100 Startups In The Middle East – 2018

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The Middle East’s startup ecosystem continues to mature as entrepreneurs look to tap innovative business opportunities across the region. Investors too have an increased appetite for funding as they invest in MENA-based startups that fix transit systems, insure people, facilitate e-payments and even offer robo-backed investment advisory solutions.
For the second consecutive year, Forbes Middle East reveals its annual list of Top 100 Startups In The Middle East that rounds up companies offering innovative solutions to some of the challenges that the region’s businesses and consumers face. The list highlights the 100 startups in the region that have bagged most funding—with the startup’s age not exceeding six years. These startups possess the potential to scale-up into bigger businesses in the near future.
In order to qualify for the list, startups should be no more than six years old. While many young companies do not qualify for the list in 2018, they still continue to bag the highest amounts of funding from the region’s investors. We have formed a separate list called 12 Up And Coming Companies that compiles these high achievers.
The U.A.E. remains the hub for entrepreneurial activity in the Middle East, with the majority of startups based out of the country.  However, startup ecosystem in Egypt, Lebanon and Jordan also showed signs of growth with many catching the investors’ fancy through their innovative solutions.
This year 2018 has also been significant for startups within our lists since many have secured funding from regional and international investors. More funding deals can be expected since many are just finishing the formalities as the year ends.
Within the two lists we have 217 founders from 35 different nationalities. The startups and companies bagged $610.3 million in total funding from external investors, with 93% of them securing more than $1 million each.
In this edition, we also list the 50 Most Active Investors who have been successfully identifying entrepreneurial talent across the region and helping them grow by injecting funds.
ImageRankStartupDescriptionFoundersFundingCountryFounded
1FetchrGPS-based shippingIdriss Al Rifai, Joy Ajlouny$52 MU.A.E.2012
2HolidayMeCustomized travel servicesGeet Bhalla, Digvijay Pratap, Mansour Bin Madi$24 MU.A.E.2013
3VezeetaDigital healthcare platform empowering consumersAmir Barsoum$ 22.6 MEgypt2012
4PayTabsOnline payment processing solutionsAbdulaziz Fahad Aljouf$20 MSaudi Arabia2014
5ekarCar-sharing serviceVilhelm Hedberg$ 16.8 MU.A.E.2016
6Mawdoo3online Arabic content platformMohammad Jaber, Rami Al- Qawasmi$ 15.5 MJordan2012
7Souqalmal.comFinancial products comparison siteAmbareen Musa$ 15 MU.A.E.2012
8LamsaArabic digital content for kidsBadr Ward$ 12.55 MU.A.E.2013
9BeehiveSME focused peer2peer lending platformCraig Moore$ 11.5 MU.A.E.2014
10YallacompareFinancial products comparison siteJon Richards, Samer Chehab$10.1 MU.A.E.2012
11InstaShopGrocery delivery appJohn Tsioris, Ioanna Angelidaki$ 9.5 MU.A.E.2015
12ScriptrIoT application platformRabih Nassar$8.5 MLebanon2015
13ServiceMarketMoving and home servicesBana Shomali, Wim Torfs$8.3 MU.A.E.2014
14HelplingOnline platform for on-demand home servicesManar AlkassarU.A.E.2015
15WuzzufRecruitment platformAmeer Sherif$ 8 MEgypt2012
16SwvlMass transit systemMostafa Kandil, Mahmoud Nouh, Ahmed Sabbah$ 8 MEgypt2017
17BayzatOnline health insurance and HR solutions providerTalal Bayaa, Brian Habibi$7.6 MU.A.E.2014
18Sprii.comOnline retailer of children merchandise and womenswearSarah JonesU.A.E.2014
19ReserveOutOnline restaurant guide and bookingKhalil Shadid$7.1 MU.A.E.2012
20MyboxOn demand home servicesBader and Fahad Al Kalooti$7 MU.A.E.2014
21AlmentorOnline video e-learning platformIhab Fikry, Ibrahim Kamel, Hesham Heikal, Husni Khuffash, Abdelrhamn Fahmy$ 7 MU.A.E.2016
22EnerwhereCommercial-scale solar panelsDaniel Zywietz$ 6.7 MU.A.E.2012
23360VUZVirtual reality and 360� videos mobile appKhaled ZaatarahU.A.E.2016
24Justmop.comOn-demand home cleaning servicesKerem Kuyucu, Ali Cagatay OzcanU.A.E.2015
25MorniOn-demand roadside assistanceSalman Al-Suhaibaney$5.6 MSaudi Arabia2014
26EureecaCrowdfunding platformChristoper Thomas, Sam Quawasmi$ 5.3 MU.A.E.2013
27MykiCybersecurityAntoine Vincent Jebara, Priscilla Elora Sharuk$ 5.2 MLebanon2015
28BatutaHotel booking platformKamil Silbak, Amir Ounallah$ 5 MPalestine2012
29Falafel GamesDevelops and publishes massively multiplayer online gamesVincent Ghossoub, Radwan Kasmiya$4.8 MLebanon2016
30Acacus TechnologiesOptimization software for transport, logistics and aviation industriesTalal Ben Halim, Herve Marchet$ 4.7 MU.A.E.2013
31AppMahalSocial media application developerMona Haddad$ 4.5 MPalestine2014
32EatRestaurant reservationsNezar Kadhem$ 4.4 MBahrain2015
33UdriveCar sharing platformHasib Khan$ 4.3 MU.A.E.2016
34FoodicsCloud-based restaurant management systemAhmad AlZaini and Mosab AlOthmani$ 4.25 MSaudi Arabia2013
35TruKKerOn-demand truck aggregatorGaurav Biswas, Pradeep Mallavarapu$ 4.1 MU.A.E.2016
36Maison PriveeVirtual hotel operatorRami Shamaa, Paul Mallee$ 4 MU.A.E.2017
37ShopGoE-commerce platformLubna Taimeh, Noora Shanak$3.4 MJordan2012
38GhinwaDigital music talent showMohammad AlMunaikh, Bader Althous and Alfonso Fernandez$ 3.2 MKuwait2015
39InstabugSoftware glitches in apps detecting toolMoataz Soliman, Omar Gabr$ 3.1 MEgypt2012
40STEP GroupDigital and new media companyRay Dargham, Bahaa Moussalli, Nizar Fakih$ 3 MU.A.E.2012
41Designer-24Online designer dress rental companySara Alemzadeh, Ranya KhalilU.A.E.2014
42insydoOnline guide for the U.A.E.Tanaz Dizadji, Siobhain Spear, Sami El Tamawy$ 3 MU.A.E.2014
43BloovoAlgorithmic job matching portalAhmad Khamis, Iyad Abu HweijU.A.E.2015
44YaootaOnline price comparisonSherif ElRakabawy, Mohamed Ewis$ 2.7 MEgypt2014
45OnegccOnline recruitment platform for GCC nationalsFatima Albalooshi, Alharith Alatawi, Mohamed Zaman, Angelo Embuldeniya$ 2.5 MBahrain2015
46TamatemMobile game publisherHussam Hammo$ 2.5 MJordan2014
47SeezMarketplace for used carsTarek and Andrew Kabrit$ 2.38 MU.A.E.2015
48CarSwitch.comOnline marketplace for used carsImad Hammad, Ali Malik$ 2.3 MU.A.E.2016
49SkiplinoMultilingual cloud based queue management systemAlharith Alatawi, Zaman AH. Zaman, Ricardo Gaspar$ 2.3 MBahrain2016
50el GrocerGrocery delivery marketplaceNader Amiri, Raed Hafez$ 2.2 MU.A.E.2015
51POSRocketCloud-based Point-of-sale platformZeid Husban$ 2.15 MJordan2016
52YouGotaGift.comElectronic greeting and gift cardsHusain Makiya, Abed Bibi$ 2.1 MU.A.E.2013
53joi giftsOnline physical gifts platformAlper Celen, Ritesh Tilani$ 2.1 MU.A.E.2015
54B8akHome maintenance platformKhalid Al-Hmili, Eyad Al-Shabaan$2 MSaudi Arabia2015
55WashmenOn-demand laundry pickupJad Halaoui, Rami ShaarU.A.E.2015
56EventtusPlatform for events ticket sales and audience engagementMai Medhat, Nihal FaresEgypt2012
57En2lapp and online transportation service providerAhmed Darwish$2 MEgypt2017
58RemitrMoney transfer appKanchan Kumar, Sandeep Jhingran, Altaf Ahmed, Sandeep Todi$2 MU.A.E.2015
59Hmall.maB2C general merchandise marketplaceKamal Reggad$2 MMorocco2012
60LUNCH:ONOrdering lunch via email or SMSMohammad Al Zaben, Dana Baki$ 2 MU.A.E.2015
61KamkalimaArabic interactive learning platfrom for K-12Siroun Shamigian, Nisrine Makkouk$2 MLebanon2015
62MrUstaOn-demand customer servicesIbrahim Colak$1.9 MU.A.E.2014
63NabbeshFreelance work marketplaceLoulou Khazen Baz$1.8 MU.A.E.2012
64CognitevMarketing automation platformMoustafa Mahmoud, Ahmed Hassan, Maha Refai$1.7 MEgypt2015
65THE LISTMarketplace for luxury collectiblesAndreas SkorskiU.A.E.2016
66Crowd AnalyzerArabic-focused social media monitoring platformAhmed Saad, Bahaa Galal$1.7 MU.A.E.2015
67GEEKSOn-demand computer repairsMousa Yassin, Fathi Al Sharif, Ala Majaj$1.6 MU.A.E.2014
68BrateProducts, services and businesses marketplaceShadi Tabbara, Samih Harfouche$1.6 MLebanon2012
69brndstrBot studio for brandsSimon Hudson$1.6 MU.A.E.2013
70ChefXchangeOnline marketplace to book private chefKarl Naim, Marc Washington$1.6 MU.A.E.2015
71Tap PaymentsSimplifying online paymentsAli Abulhasan, Ahmed Almunayes, Mohammed AbulhasanKuwait2013
72SarwaRobo wealth advisorMark Chahwan, Jad Sayegh, Nadine Mezher$1.5 MU.A.E.2017
73OfficeRock.comOnline retailer for office suppliesChristopher Queitsch, Rami Al Saleh$1.5 MU.A.E.2012
74SchoolVoiceInteractive platform for schools and parentsAli Bin Yahia$1.5 MU.A.E.2017
75Risk+ SolutionsFinancial intelligence and risk management solutionsJad Doumith,Chadi El Nawar$1.5 MLebanon2017
76ChainoSocial networking platformAli Zewail, Mohamed Nar$1.4 MEgypt2015
77ElvesPersonal helperKarim Elsahy, Abeer Elsisy$1.3 MEgypt2016
78NibrasOnline courses for employeesAmmar KhayyatU.A.E.2014
79MelltooReseller marketplaceMorrad Irsane, Sharene Lee$1.3 MU.A.E.2014
80LoopElectric scooter sharing technologyAnwar Sukkarie$1.3 MLebanon2015
81YumamiaPeer-to-peer foodie appBelal El Borno, Mahmoud El Maghraby$1.2 MEgypt2014
82FalconViz3D aerial survey and mappingAnas Dahlawi, Neil Smith, Luca Passone, Mohamed Shalaby$1.1 MSaudi Arabia2015
83CTM360Cyber SecurityMirza Asrar Baig$ 1 MBahrain2014
84MAGNiTTData platformPhilip Bahoshy$ 1 MU.A.E.2014
85La ReinaOnline platform for rental coutureGhada El-Tanawy, Amr Diab$1 MEgypt2016
86Brand RipplrAd-Tech platform to automate influencer marketing process for businesses.Tanaz Dizadji, Siobhain Spear, Sami El Tamawy$ 1 MU.A.E.2017
87WhizztipsOnline marketplace to find helpPrajit Arakkal, Richard Pakenham, Suchira Joshi$1 MU.A.E.2015
88VotekArabic voice recognitionLojain Jibawi, Sawsan Said$1 MU.A.E.2014
89TaskSpottingCustomer rewardsKarim Aly, Dirk Stevens$1 MU.A.E.2014
90ShawarmanjiFast food chainDanny El Georr, Nizar El Hashem, Elias Chabtini$1 MU.A.E.2012
91LoadMEOn-demand truck transportationSebastian Stefan, Sebastian Morar, Claudia Pacurar$952KU.A.E.2014
92WakeCapSafety and tracking deviceHassan Albalawi, Ishita Sood Kochhar,Roy Gilsing, Rene Wassenburg, Rami Nassouh$ 950 KU.A.E.2017
93Black Cube Solutionseducation technologyPeer Mohaideen SaitU.A.E.2017
94CollectionairOnline art galleryValerie Konde, Olivier Varenne$ 900 KU.A.E.2015
95DemocranceInsurance technology providerMichele Grosso, Alberto Perez$ 800 KU.A.E.2015
96Shelvzcloud-based SaaS to automate data collection to provide real-time visibility & analytics to businessesEmile Harb$ 800 KLebanon2017
97GoodsMartOnline grocery service appAmr Fawzi, Rami Nassar, Ahmed Sudan$ 750 KEgypt2013
98UrbanBuzCustomer loyalty and engagement platformMustafa Sadek, Salam Saadeh$735 KU.A.E.2013
99Eddresscloud based fleet management solutionRonny Shibley , Karim EL Khoury$ 700 kLebanon2015
100Hello World KidsPlatform to learn programming at schoolsHanan Khader$650KJordan2015