Multi-award-winning reality series, Shark Tank , kicked off its first season on January 7, 2023. The series, which revolves around entrepreneurship, comes under the patronage of the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology. The first season features a slew of Egyptian startups and business spanning several fields including fintech, agritech, health, and e-commerce.
The premise sees the business owners pitch their ideas to a jury of experts and professionals in a bid to secure funds for their startup. The investors, dubbed sharks, decide whether the startup is worth investing in while simultaneously looking for cracks and strengths within the business models presented.
For its first season, the series welcomes six jurors who’ve honed their skills in different fields including solar energy, e-commerce, and real estate among others. These are Ahmed El Sewedy, President and CEO of leading integrated energy solutions, El Sewedy Electric; Mohamed Farouk, angel investor and CEO and Chairman of the furniture manufacturing giant, Mobica; Hilda Louca, Founder and CEO of retail e-commerce platform, Mitcha.com; Mohamed Ismail Mansour, Co-Founder and CEO of Egypt’s largest renewable energy company, Infinity; Abdallah Sallam, President and CEO of Real Estate Developers, Minka; and Ayman Abbas Executive Chairman of Egyptian Conglomerate Intro Holding.
A new episode airs every Saturday on CBC Egypt, at 9 PM EET.
The American reality series first launched in August 2009 and it has won several Emmys since.
Who are the startups?
With a number of startups, each proficient within a specialized and growing sector in Egypt, Shark Tank offers ripe grounds for these businesses to learn and grow. For this season, virtual commerce startup, StepInside is one of the candidates taking part in the show. StepInside, which launched the concept of a virtual store using augmented reality and VR technology, invites buyers to interact with the products, online.
Dajin, another runner-up vying for funds, is an agritech business that uses AI, to offer financial solutions within the poultry industry. Agritech is a growing industry within Egypt, with startups taking an interest in both tackling the global threat and connecting farmers to innovative technologies, according to Yahoo Finance.
In the health food sector, Egyptian-bred business Country’s creates organic homemade recipes that cater to all. Switching up processed sugars for alternatives like honey, the company’s presence is mainly online.
Habu Arts is a home-accessories business that manufactures decor merging ancient Egyptian art with modernity.
As part of their pitches, the startups offer up a percentage of a stake in their company in return for an investment. The panel either agrees to the terms or offers up alternatives.
What does this mean for Egypt?
Shark Tank is an opportunity for exposure with the potential to further grow the startup scene in Egypt. As these businesses, still in the budding stages of their development, pitch their ideas, veteran entrepreneurs, investors and business owners provide them with an opportunity to learn through feedback.
The country’s startup ecosystem has been growing consistently over the years. It ranks 65th globally, and first regionally in North Africa, according to Startup Blink, a research organization and startup ecosystem tracker.
“Hopefully the show will spotlight a huge amount of nascent and promising businesses. I’m confident the show will present solutions, innovations and creations that will garner appreciation from viewers,” H.E Dr.Amr Talaat, Minister of Communications and Information Technology, told Startup Scene.
To apply, click here.
Photo credits @Countrys.EG