startAD’s Artificial Intelligence
Venture Launchpad Sprint Accelerator 

September 30 – October 10, 2018

Application Deadline: August 30, 2018

The startAD Venture Launchpad is a 10-day sprint accelerator deeply linked to emerging UAE industries designed to help startups rapidly refine, improve, and validate their business models customized for the UAE and MENA markets. Open to global seed stage artificial intelligence startups, the venture launchpad is supported by leading local corporations Etihad Airways, ADNOC Distribution, UAE Exchange and Abu Dhabi Global Markets and is free of charge to accepted teams. Startups accepted into the program will go through a combination of training, mentorship, corporate showcase roundtables, investor round tables, pitches, interviews, local customer discovery and validation activities and develop robust go-to-market strategies.

Note: Startups accepted into the Venture Launchpad are required to attend all 10 days of the program.


  • Get introduced to the UAE and regional market opportunities
  • Meet key corporate partners, prospective clients, investors and experts in the industry that can help expand your network and advance your business from the startAD and NYU global network.
  • Have opportunities to validate your business with leading UAE corporations like Etihad Airways, ADNOC Distribution, UAE Exchange, Crescent Enterprises, etc.
  • Be considered for Innovations Prizes from Partner company (ies) (like Etihad)
  • Be considered for startAD seed fund (from 50 to 250K USD) and ADvance (an opportunity to work at startAD co-working space for 4-6 weeks and do deeper market analysis, get necessary mentorship and meet with potential partners and investors).
  • Pitch your startups to active local investors -VCs, Angels and organizational investors.
  • Seed stage Artificial Intelligence startups
  • Targeting UAE/MENA market
  • Startups who have a functioning prototype
  • Startups with a committed founding team.

Examples of industry use cases we are looking for, but are not limited to:

  • Fintech
  • Insurtech
  • Regtech
  • Airport operations
  • Predictive maintenance
  • Fuel efficiency
  • Enterprise solution
  • NLP
  • Machine Learning
  • Predictive Analytics
  • Search
  • Data Analytics


Corporate partners

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