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Challenge 22 start-ups showcase their innovations in Qatar

Five out of the ten winners from the second cycle of Challenge 22 recently travelled to Qatar to present to stakeholders and local companies, ready to test their innovations and scale in the local market.

Challenge 22 is an innovation award launched in 2015 by the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC). It unites, inspires and challenges the region's brightest minds, providing innovative thinkers with the opportunity to have their ideas showcased in front of an audience of billions at the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar™ and beyond.

For the second cycle, Challenge 22 received more than 1,000 applications across four categories: tourism experience, sustainability, health & safety and internet of things.

The high-performing teams that have made rapid progress in their projects and visited Doha are: Bonocle – Assistive Technology, from Qatar, ViaVii – Travel Mobile App, and Eila – Commerce Chatbot, both from Jordan, SnapGoal – Social App for Football, from Jordan and Palestine, and Fallound – Aggregator Platform, from Lebanon.

H.E. Hassan Al Thawadi, the SC's Secretary General, said: "We are proud to see how far the teams have come since 2017 and pleased to see we are delivering on our promise to leave a lasting social, human and economic legacy."

"Challenge 22 continues to provide a platform for the region's innovators to display their entrepreneurial spirit and become part of the 2022 FIFA World Cup story, all while building a sustainable and economically diverse future for the region," he concluded.

Khalid Al Kubaisi, the SC's Chief of Advisory Unit and Special Projects, said: "We invited five winning teams that we wanted to connect with some of our stakeholders to continue their innovative growth. It is a source of great pride for all involved to see first-hand the progress they are making."

He added: "We are committed to legacy beyond 2022 through long-term investments in social and knowledge-based infrastructure that create a sustainable impact on economic, social, human and the environment in Qatar and the Arab region." 

During an intensive five-day stay in Doha the teams met with various public and private sector entities in the transport, accommodation, entertainment, broadcast, technology and telecommunications industries.

The SC aims to continue to support innovative regional and global entrepreneurs, start-ups and ventures, with the goal of enhancing service offerings in a multitude of industries that benefit football fans, visitors and residents during the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar™.

Below are brief details about each of the teams who visited Doha:

Bonocle: A next-generation assistive technology that will allow the visually impaired to co-exist in our classrooms and workplaces while enjoying similar, if not the same, access to digital content. Bonocle utilises the medium of braille to provide users with unprecedented accessibility to a wide array of electronic devices while maintaining a user-friendly and natural reading experience.

ViaVii: A platform that allows travellers and expatriates to discover what is happening, based on their interests and location. The platform offers management tools for users to create and organise their activities and events in a few steps, giving them the opportunity to create new communities and engage with others who have similar interests.

Eila: A chatbot that allows businesses to sell their products over Facebook Messenger. For events like the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar™, Eila will automate concession sales. Attendees will be able to order food, drinks or even merchandise right to their seats.

SnapGoal: An innovative mobile app targeting football fans in the Arab world. The app will allow football fans to receive videos of goals scored by their favourite teams as quickly as possible.

Fallound: A platform which gathers audio recordings (podcasts) from across the internet and makes them available to users, tailored to their preferences.