Qatar Science & Technology Park (QSTP), part of Qatar Foundation Research, Development & Innovation (QF RDI), has announced that applications for the latest edition of its XLR8 program are now open, and that it will be awarding funding for up to three winning teams upon completion. Applications are open from October 20 to November 13, with the program running from November 23, 2021 to March 23, 2022.
QSTP’s flagship accelerator program, XLR8, now in its 12th cycle, has been revamped. Not only will the program award financial support to the winners, but it has also added a new, value-added ‘Ideation Module’ as part of the training. Under this module, participants will conduct customer interviews to improve or pivot their original idea based on real customer feedback, a vital practice in the process of creating an impactful business.
The program’s robust mentorship and speaker network will also expand this year to include more international experts to guide aspiring entrepreneurs throughout the program.
XLR8 is a pre-startup program that offers intensive training and mentorship for early-stage technology entrepreneurs, and enables them to transform their ideas into commercially viable businesses. It has inspired hundreds of budding entrepreneurs to pursue their ambitions and develop their skills by helping them to refine their business models, build customer traction, and launch a go-to-market strategy.
Qatar-based teams of up to five members from across a broad range of industries are eligible for the program. Successful applicants will be working on impactful solutions to real-life industry problems through technology and innovation.
While the program – which will now take place annually rather than twice-yearly – has been updated, the underlying message stays the same: XLR8 embodies QSTP’s commitment to nurturing local tech entrepreneurship and innovation by supporting the translation of pioneering technology concepts into commercially viable businesses, products, and services that benefit users both in Qatar and beyond, while directly contributing to the national vision of a diversified and sustainable economy.
“QSTP is looking forward to welcoming the latest cohort of entrepreneurs to the 12th cycle of our XLR8 program,” commented Yosouf Al-Salehi, Executive Director of QSTP. “The creative ideas that our participants bring to the table always carry immense potential to solve real world problems so we take great pride in helping them to understand the commercial viability of their innovative solutions and to create impactful business models.
“Not only can these ventures contribute to Qatar’s booming startup ecosystem, but they also have the potential to positively change the lives of consumers, or transform how businesses operate. I invite Qatar’s finest entrepreneurs to apply for this year’s cycle, which promises to be bigger and better than ever before.”
Since its inception six years ago, almost 30 startups have been launched via XLR8 with more than 150 teams and around 400 individuals participating in the program. Having secured further investment, six startups are now expanding internationally – Meddy, Stellic, MaktApp, Bonocle, WakeCap and EasyBroadcast.
For more details about the XLR8 program and to apply for this year’s cycle, please visit https://qstp.org.qa/xlr8/