One of the Smart Qatar (TASMU) Program's flagship initiatives, TASMU Digital Valley (TDV), which sits under the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, launched the TDV accelerator Proof-of-Concept (POC) programme to identify the best-suited support needed for startups in the acceleration stage.
Working with two Qatari startups, TDV focused on accelerating the growth of these companies through workshops and trainings, while working on identifying and addressing gaps in the country's startup ecosystem.
The POC programme was designed to establish and test various hypotheses around the need for acceleration in Qatar while leveraging lessons learned from successful global acceleration programmes.
The programme was launched as a follow-up to TDV's "Voice of the Start-Up" analysis which studied the degree of satisfaction startups have with the current level of ecosystem support.
The results showed a pressing need for practical support, more sectoral coverage, and know-how acceleration support for startups in the growth stage, one of five key development stages for startups.
Based on these learnings, TDV shortlisted two prominent local startups and took them through the structured TDV accelerator Proof-of-Concept (POC) programme.
The delivery model consisting of SMEs, core content, and participants, was tailored for each startup and delivered through focused workshops.
Through these workshops, challenges were jointly identified and collaboratively addressed based on best practice methodology and industry experts' recommendations.
Businesses that take part in the programme benefit from hands-on expertise tailored to their specific needs such as lean product management, minimum viable product development, and business models setup, in addition to being promoted to the wider TDV ecosystem.
Reem al-Mansoori, Assistant Undersecretary of Digital Society Development at the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology said: "Start-up acceleration is paramount to advancing the digital ecosystem and supporting the movement towards an economy of digital disruptors.
TASMU is committed to providing comprehensive support to start-ups that can lead to the development of priority sectors.
Speaking to start-ups to address challenges, allowing a room of improvement in the country's digital ecosystem, is just one of the many solutions that TASMU is offering to fuel Qatar's digital transformation". TDV acts as the acknowledged ecosystem orchestrator designed to nurture Qatar's digital ecosystem to enable the development and implementation of smart solutions across TASMU's five priority sectors.
In 2020, TDV's partnerships with Qatar Free Zone Authority, Qatar Financial Centre, Digital Incubation Center and TASMU Innovation Lab were activated for the delivery of services across areas such as market access, matchmaking, incubation, entrepreneurship, and networking.
In collaboration with these partners, TDV supports the innovation journey of its members, which consists of local and international startups, SMEs, and multinational companies in the technology sector.
TASMU is committed to building a smart, sustainable, and vibrant society using advanced technology and innovation.
It is working with government entities, entrepreneurs, multinational companies, research, and academic institutes to create tangible smart solutions and applications that are relevant to Qatar's challenges.    
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