TeamEME, from EME College, NUST, has won the 2017 Hult Prize Pakistan Competition. TeamEME has advanced to the regional finals of the Hult Prize competition to win funding to build a sustainable and scalable start-up aimed at restoring the rights and dignity of refugees.
Held under the banner of the most coveted startup-accelerator for university students around the world – The Hult Prize, the 2017 local competition took place on January 4-5, and saw 25 teams present their business ideas and startup proposals to a distinguished panel of judges. TeamEME, from EME College, NUST, Rawalpindi, emerged as the winning team competing against Pioneer FAIM, (UET, Lahore) and Ozone Dextoxifiet (Lahore Garrison University, Lahore) in the final held at the National Incubation Center (NIC), Islamabad.
About The Judges Panel
The panel of judges included several industry experts, renowned entrepreneurs and business leaders who have worked at international national and regional level.
The competition was overseen by Asraf Ul Kabeer, Chief Technical Architect at IBM along with a panel of 13 judges. The panel included: Atyab Tahir, H/0 Digital Banking-HBL; Fahmida Khan, UNAIDS; Furqan Shamsi, Coach at GUGGU; Nameer Khan, Fintech Expert; Mustafa Muhammad Khan Minhas, ISRA University; Amtul Baweja, INJAZ; Farhan Javed, Brando Marketing; Imran Afridi, MAD; Waqas Badshah, Webnet Pakistan; Maryam Ahmed, Social Innovation Lab; Osama Ashraf, Business Lead, IBM; and Sajid Ali Khan, Cloud Evangelist, IBM, among others.
Out of the hundreds of accepted entries, only 25 were shortlisted. Some of the other shortlisted teams include Team Green, Abbotabad University of Sciences and Technology; Team Ajrak, NUST; Team The Science Squad, Lahore Garrison University; Team Daakhla.pk, Iqra University; and Team Fakhr, IBA, Karachi.
The 2016 Hult Prize Challenge
According to the statement on Hult Prize’s official website:
The 2017 Hult Prize “President’s Challenge” is “Refugees – Reawakening Human Potential” and will focus on restoring the rights and dignity of people and societies who may be, or are forced into motion due to social injustices, politics, economic pressures, climate change and war.
The Hult Foundation grants US$ 1 million in seed capital to help the winners launch a social enterprise. Hult Prize is collaboration between Clinton Foundation and Hult Business School. Former U.S. President Bill Clinton selects the challenge and announces the winner each year in September.
The regional final will be held in Dubai on March 3, 2017. The other cities where the regional final rounds will be held include Boston, San Francisco, London, and Shanghai. Regional winners are invited to participate in the Hult Accelerator, an intensive program held at Hult International Business School in Boston each summer. The final round will take place in Boston, U.S.
About Hult Prize Pakistan
Hult Prize Pakistan is a national-level program for the Hult Prize. This program gives students the opportunity to get past the general application round and advance directly into the Hult Prize Regional Finals. Over 155 Startup Idea applications, from more than 50 varied universities, were received this year. However, only 25 Startup ideas made it to the final round. This year’s event was sponsored by Careem, IBM, National Incubation Center (NIC), Plan9, PlanetN & Isra University.
In a candid chat with Pakwired, Mr. Imran Jattala, who is the director of Hult Prize Pakistan, expressed his views about the program.
“Hult Prize challenges millennials from over 100 countries to craft new business models to solve pressing social issues. Pakistan the sixth largest nation on earth, need innovative business models to solve challenges like education, food, water, security & energy. Hult Prize provides that platform.”
image: Malik Ahmad Jalal / Twitter