WORLD’S PREMIER STARTUP PROGRAM CHOOSES LEBANON TO LAUNCH LARGEST SEED CAPITAL PRIZE IN THE MIDDLE EAST

From Left to Right Mr. Saad Azhari, Mr. Ahmad Al Achkar and Dr. Fadi Osseiran

BEIRUT, October 26, 2017 – BLOM BANK Chairman and General Manager Saad Azhari and BLOMINVEST BANK General Manager Dr. Fadi Osseiran announced today the launch of Hult Prize Lebanon at the 7th annual Lebanon CSR Forum under the patronage of Central Bank Governor H.E. Riad Salame.

 

In a historic initiative, Banque du Liban and BLOM BANK have come together to support an unprecedented opportunity for Lebanon’s youth to create and launch for good, for profit enterprises aimed at transforming the lives of millions. This deal was facilitated by local attorney Karim Kobbessi of Kobbeissi & Frangieh. Students from every university in Lebanon will now be able to directly participate in one of the world’s most prestigious startup programs, the Hult Prize. Top entries on college campuses across Lebanon will be incubated locally through a social impact business incubator setup in Beirut Digital District, while the national winner will represent all of Lebanon as they move to compete at Hult Prize Global, in partnership with the United Nations. A record setting USD250,000 in seed funding will support the top Lebanese entries as they work towards launching and scaling their enterprises, with potential access to an additional USD1,000,000 of capital.

 

Hult Prize CEO and Founder Ahmad Ashkar was in Beirut for the official launch and said, “I continue to be inspired by the hope, ability and sheer desire of the Lebanese youth to change the world. When you combine these aspirations with the willingness of organizations like BLOM Bank, with its commitment to invest in and support education, social good, and entrepreneurship, the opportunities for a nation are limitless.”

 

On this occasion, BLOM BANK Chairman and General Manager Saad Azhari said: “BLOM BANK has long been working on empowering the youth and mainly through education. One of the most prominent advantages of the Hult Prize, which is dedicated for university students, is that it combines positive and sustainable projects with financial gain. This is what we call the second generation of business”.

 

Dr. Fadi Osseiran, BLOMINVEST BANK’s General Manager also praised the Hult Prize highlighting that it aims to discover entrepreneurship potential among university students and promote solving social problems while offering the opportunity of establishing their own start-up. Another important aspect of the Hult Prize is that it also provides mentorship and various trainings to its applicants.

 

The Hult Prize Foundation has been operating since 2009 and is currently the leading program in the world for the development of early stage startups emerging from university. With over 1,200 university programs across 100 countries and a network of more than 1.6million alumni, participants, coaches, mentors and judges, the Hult Prize is leading an entire generation to change the world. Backed by President Bill Clinton since 2010, the Hult Prize Foundation portfolio of startups includes trailblazers in food, energy, healthcare and transportation. “I love the Hult Prize because it’s a way for young people to turn their good intentions into action. It’s simply the way the world has to work in the 21st century” said President Bill Clinton.

 

Applications for Hult Prize Lebanon are now being accepted. Interested students can visit hultprize.org to learn more and complete an application form.

 

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