June'17 : Syndications, Acquisitions, Deals, MENA Unicorns, Deals and more  

Moore's Law holds that the number of transistors per square inch would double every 12 months. Today, an integrated circuit holds more computing power than NASA did when it launched a man on the moon. Tech trends are advancing at a similar pace. Since the start of the year we've been watching FinTech and it is certainly getting interesting. So is the tech scene in Eastern Europe. This month we continue to follow trends in FinTech, but also have several interesting pieces that shed light on tech in Eastern Europe. Fasten your seatbelts friends. The ride is just getting started.....


Venture capital isn't everything. For real. It's one thing. Startups require an ecosystem. And an ecosystem requires networks and connections. This Startups Watch graphics lays out what Turkey's startups ecosystem looks like, through the lens of the investors that have collaborated to back Turkish startups. Okay, we admit, this is a humblebrag. One that we're totes proud of. 212 was founded on community and connections. Community and connections are at the heart of Silicon Valley. Let's make it the heart of Turkey and the entire MENA region.

Go East young person!



When the going gets tough, the tough go to Eastern Europe. And, why not? Eastern Europe is overflowing with math and tech geeks.

Code on.

As a result, investors are starting to pour in. Last year, Eastern European startups raised EUR177 million ($199 million). "Poland, Estonia, and Romania are attracting the biggest funding rounds, while the Czech Republic is home to some of the most mature, best-funded companies." Get on this.

Show me the Lira, the Pound, the Dirham...


Transferwise is launching a new "borderless account" - an online account that can hold multiple currencies. It aims to help businesses manage payments and costs in local currencies across multiple countries using just one account.

Why is this big?

Banks will balk at a direct challenge to their territory. And it just shows that the next frontier is FinTech isn't apps, but the entire banking and finance industry itself. It won't be the same in a decade. You heard it here first.

Prezi, the Hungarian-founded presentation tech platform, has acquired Latvian data visualization startup infogram. Told you Eastern Europe was hot.

Now that summer is here you took our After Hours Advice and got Maria Kondo'ed - you can take all those items you cleared out of your closet to the givin marketplace. Clean up, clear out, do good. #winning


Delivery Hero to buy Carriage. So what? Food delivery is low hanging fruit. The question to ask is what happens to the space once it's under the umbrella of Delivery Hero. The German-based company is set to acquire another MENA company, this time UAE's Carriage. As Amazon, Google, and other Silicon Valley companies have shown - they reinvent themselves. With all these food companies under its umbrella where does Delivery Hero go? Watch this space.

The e-commerce wars


Muhahahah...... (that's an evil laugh, or at least trying to be).

The e-commerce space is still a battlefield. Remember when Emaar Malls missed out on buying Souq to Amazon?


It wasn't game over. Emaar just picked up Namshi, the Rocket Internet Amazon clone, for $151 million.


Get out your popcorn people.

Where's your crib at?


Grids are hard in the desert (they're also hard in the dessert). That's what makes Fetchr one of MENA's startups to watch.  The Dubai based firm uses geolocations for package pick up and drop off. (Insert Aramex's fistbump - we got you Fadi Ghandour). No more trying to figure out postal codes or post boxes. Not everywhere can be Main Street. And with smartphones they don't have to be. That's why we're bullish on the next big thing in MENA, not hoping for the next Silicon Valley.

MENA Investors in Global Unicorns

It's an infographic people, no words needed!

500 Startups closes $15 million MENA fund


Go Dave McClure. Always going to places no other man or women wants to go. His global accelerator, 500 Startups, closed on a $15 million MENA fund

The Oman Investment Fund and the Qatar Science and Technology Park are the main backers. It's not Dave's first rodeo though.

500 Startups has 39 investments in MENA, including 9 in Turkey.

Donald let these Ukrainians help you - For covfefe


We told you Eastern European tech is hot. Grammarly is a software company that helps with spelling (this is for you Donald) and grammar is gaining traction. Started in 2009 in Canada by two Ukrainian classmates it has been entirely bootstrapped. Now, business is booming. Investors are salivating. Founders Max Lytvyn and Alex Shevchenko are smiling. Hey, Max and Lex, are you single? #AskingForAFriend


Deep Dive:

            Why they exited?

The exit: its become the north star, even before the startup has gone from idea to operation. What is it? What does it involve? In this month's 212 Deep Dive, we talked to a few founders to find out.


Continue reading here.

After Hours

The days are longer. The weather is warmer. We know you've been following our 212 wellness regimen, so you're beach body is so ready. We've got a list of things you can take up in those extra hours under the sun, that will add, oh so much, to you:

Read & Learn

Read Adam Grant's Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World


Learn all about artifical intelligence

Listen & Watch

Up coming events

Get your mentoring on at ITU MAGNET! We're coming at you Maslak every Thursday.


7 June 2017 - Türk Telekom PİLOT Demo Day


10 June 2017 - Endeavor Case Campus


12 June 2017 - StartersHub 2nd Anniversary Celebration


14 June 2017 - Goldman Payment Conference in London, United Kingdom


15 June 2017 - UK MENA Forum in London, United Kingdom


Darkness cannot drive out darkness. Only light can do that.” ― Martin Luther King Jr.


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