The Equity Room

Step into The Equity Room

The Equity Room opens its doors to let in only the best entrepreneurs for an exclusive and intense reality show for startups. Within its walls, they will come face-to-face with a broad mix of influential, well-connected, and high net worth sharks and angels, ready to get a piece of the business ideas with the most potential, or rip them apart.

A startup reality show like no other

The Equity Room will host unlimited startups in a period of four hours, and within that time frame, they will have the chance to make it or break it. They either get eliminated or get the funding they seek along with the right strategic growth they need to progress.
The investment or funding decisions do not solely lie on the sharks but the option is also accessible to the angels.

How to survive The Equity Room

To get to the top, each startup must be armed with a solid pitch that will keep the sharks and the rest of the room hooked onto every word.
The entrepreneurs must think on their feet to land a deal while simultaneously navigating through live critique.
Ultimately, each one has the chance to receive the funding they seek along with the right strategic partnerships, or they can get eliminated within the first few seconds.

The Equity Room is open to investors. Get involved.

Face-to-face Encounters

The Equity Room is not for faint-hearted entrepreneurs. Each startup will stand in front of an audience composed of sharks, angels, and the rest of the populace.

Within the physical space, eminent leaders and experts of the region's investment ecosystem will test the startups' limits and only the brightest idea with the potential to break the paradigm will survive.

Live Scoring

The audience will not only witness the spectacle but also have the choice to live-score each startup through the official website.

The cumulative live scores can be viewed on the stage which could also influence the show's outcome. Every minute counts for the startups as they could be eliminated anytime. After the pitch, the sharks will follow up with questions.

Televised Event

Everything that happens inside The Equity Room doesn't just stay in The Equity Room.

Every moment is captured on camera, and the spice of the spectacle will be seen by millions. The whole world will be privy to every deal, every plot twist, and will be permanently part of each startup's journey.

The time has come to test perseverance, determination, predication, and peculiarity.

Previous Season Sharks

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Arif Saiyad

Founder & CEO
ASA Ventures

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Arif Saiyad

Founder & CEO, ASA Ventures

Arif Saiyad is the force behind Arif Saiyad & Associados Ventures (ASA Ventures)-a venture capital company which he founded in his native country, Portugal, in 2003. Currently headquartered in Dubai, Arif sits at the head of ASA Ventures which has over 30 portfolio B2B and B2C companies under its umbrella, with corporate offices in five other countries outside of the UAE.

Arif's primary area of expertise is technology, specifically machine learning and artificial intelligence.He holds a Bachelor's degree in Engineering from Instituto Superior de Engenharia de Lisboa (ISEL),and has completed a 3-year programming/engineering course from Microsoft. Apart from this, he is a Google-certified developer. When he shifted into the entrepreneurial lane 15 years ago, he led several successful entrepreneurial pursuits in Europe and the Indian subcontinent, and had varying degrees of involvement in them, from conceptualization all the way to funding. In 2013, Arif turned his focus to the Middle East and it was through ASA Ventures' seed fund that the website mobileshop.ae, an ecommerce platform, turned his $30,000 investment into $3 million USD almost overnight. To this day, ASA Ventures still holds a 45% stake in the company.

Last year, Arif and his team at ASA Ventures created Callix, an intelligent customer happiness solutions provider that offers management services and data analytics for any business, but most specifically Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). The company has been featured in major publications such as Gulf News, Khaleej Times, and Arabian Business.

In more recent times, Arif and his team has completed the development phase of Pulse, the first AI company executive that will change business operations forever, and will be made available to the public soon.

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Anvita Varshney

Co-Founder
Dubai Angel Investors

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Anvita Varshney

Co-Founder, Dubai Angel Investors

Anvita brings rich international experience in technology and digital space, an active investor and passionate about start-up ecosystem. She serves on several boards and founded Dubai Angel Investors seeking to invest in early stage online startups. She was the COO for Naspers Group (leading growth stage investor and seventh largest internet company in world), Middle East and Africa managing the portfolio of 3 leading online companies (Dubizzle, OLX, Shedd) for 25 countries in the region along with strategic M&A.

Prior, she was the Regional Managing Director of the biggest e-commerce venture Lazada in South East Asia which got later acquired by Alibaba. She has worked with Google in London, has a background in R&D tech in India and Silicon Valley and pursued an MBA from INSEAD.

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Ganesh Iyer

Managing Partner
FLC Group

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Ganesh Iyer

Managing Partner, FLC Group

Ganesh Iyer is well versed in the ways of Dubai's marketing world. Having arrived in town in 2005 as Head of Marketing for a mobile phone distributor and retailer, he helped the company open over 200 stores across the GCC, Africa and India in just four years, branching out into engaging on expansion and product development. When the recession hit, it hit hard, but where many others fell, Ganesh saw opportunity-against the odds he opened his own company, which has since executed campaigns for over 50 stellar brands, including Chanel, Bobbi Brown, Nestle, Procter & Gamble, Landmark Group and Paris Gallery to name a few, as well as working with brands in electronics, fashion and automobiles.

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Rajiv Dalmia

Founder & Chairman
Data Direct Group

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Rajiv Dalmia

Founder & Chairman, Data Direct Group

Rajiv Dalmia started his entrepreneurial journey at a very young age. After graduating from the prestigious Sri Ram College of Commerce, his journey of setting up businesses in Australia, Indonesia and Nepal brought him to Dubai where he established Data Direct Group of Companies. Data Direct specializes in providing omni-channel distribution services and supports clients in their path to Digital Transformation. A father of two, golf enthusiast, cigar and malt aficionado, Rajiv enjoys the finer things in life outside the realm of the workplace.

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Kashif Khan

Deputy CEO
Abwab Capital

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Kashif Khan

Deputy CEO, Abwab Capital

Mr. Khan is seasoned investment banking professional with more than 16 years of experience. He has unique blend of working with major global investment banks such as, Citigroup and Deutsche Bank, as well as regional financial services firms in the Middle East such as, Global Investment House. He has a track-record of successfully initiating and developing relationships with leading financial institutions, family offices, corporates (government & private), sovereign wealth / pension funds. After spending several years on Wall Street, he moved back to the Middle East more than a decade ago, and has built and maintained extensive contacts and relationships,as well as strong reputation in the Middle East, and other international markets. In his career, Mr. Khan originated and executed Investment Banking transactions where he advised on mergers and acquisitions, business carve outs, and restructuring within the Gulf and wider MENA region.

Mr. Khan has previously worked as a Vice President at Deutsche Bank's Dubai office. As a part of the Global Markets coverage team, he led origination and execution of multi-million dollars of deals across a suite of Conventional and Islamic products in the Middle East, including Structured Products, Bonds, Private Equity funds, etc. Previously he was at Citibank in Bahrain where he was responsible for managing high value relationships with Private Banking clients in the Middle East. Mr. Khan began his career in New York with leading Wall Street firms on the Investment Banking side such as Merrill Lynch and Salomon Smith Barney.

Mr. Khan is currently part of EMBA program at University of Oxford's Said Business School. He is a Fellow at University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business. He holds a BBA from Pace University's Lubin School of Business in New York.

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Raza Jaffar

MD
Enshaa Holdings Ltd

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Raza Jaffar

MD, Enshaa Holdings Ltd

Raza Jafar is an entrepreneur and philanthropist and has led the development of numerous successful ventures and projects. He has been a philanthropist since a very young age, and is currently focused on Sustainable Economic Development as identified in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Goal 8, which includes Ending Modern Day Slavery; Decoupling Economic Development from Environmental Degradation (Triple Bottom Line); Protect Labor Rights, Secure working and Living Environment for All Workers Men, Woman and Migrant Workers; Substantially Reduce Youth Unemployment by Job Creation and Education for Employment.

He is the founder of the Global Sustainability Network (GSN). GSN is a platform which brings leaders from each respective sector such as faith, government, business, media, academia, and non-profits to achieve Goal 8. Since its incorporation in 2016, GSN's events held every year at Lambeth palace, the Vatican, the United Nations, and Dubai have led to over 300 global changemakers giving their input on working on this agenda and forming alliances and partnerships to achieve goal 8 together by the year 2030.

Raza's business ventures include banking, aviation, real estate development, and hospitality management. His ability to convert vision to reality is what saw the creation of Palazzo Versace in Dubai. Under his leadership the hotel has received many accolades.

His other projects include development of Emirates Financial Towers, which is featured in the Guinness Book of World Records for having the world's largest robotic parking facility; the D1 Tower, a high-rise premium residential tower ranked in the top 10 most impressive architectural building in the world by Emporis Skyscraper Award; and the Capital Club, a private members-only business club, listed by CNN as one of the top 10 private membership clubs globally. There are currently Capital Clubs in Dubai, Bahrain, and Nairobi.

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Adriana Usvat

Managing Partner
FLC Group

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Adriana Usvat

Managing Partner, FLC Group

Adriana Usvat is the chief executive of FLC Marketing, a company she cofounded in 2009 to help local companies implement efficient marketing campaigns. MsUsvat, 36, who was born in Romania and formerly worked for Lukoil, arrived in Dubai in 2002. Her company's client portfolio includes Proctor & Gamble, Samsung, Paris Gallery, Sharaf DG, Al Futtaim and the Landmark Group.

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Vijay Tirathrai

MD
Techstars Dubai

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Vijay Tirathrai

MD, Techstars Dubai

Vijay is the Managing Director of Techstars Dubai Accelerator. Techstars is a worldwide network that supports entrepreneurs through its mentor-driven accelerator program. Backed by Techstars Ventures, it has invested $300MM in over 1,600 start-ups over the past 10 years, now has a current portfolio valuation is estimated $13BN. Prior joining Techstars, he was the former Global CEO and Chairman of the Entrepreneurs' Organization (EO) based in Washington D.C.; with its extensive global network in over 60 countries. At EO he has led the growth of 13,000+ leading entrepreneurs whose combine revenue of $600billion, through world class peer-to-peer learning programs and resources.

As a serial entrepreneur, he founded several start-ups such as in helmet manufacturing, association management and events production. Early in his career Vijay served in senior executive roles namely in fashion retail and clothing manufacturing. Throughout his career, he has taken up leadership and boards roles on several non-profit entities, such as the Young President Organization (YPO International Board), Richmond University (U.K.) and the 16th Commonwealth Games.

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Achal Ghai

Group Managing Director
Legacy Emirates Group

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Achal Ghai

Group Managing Director, Legacy Emirates Group

Achal is the Founder and MD of Legacy Emirates Group which includes Legacy Smart Employment Services (HR Outsourcing), Azara Capital (VC, Angel Investing in Corporate Finance), Fame Legacy (Tax Consulting) and Legacy Marketing (Art and Trading). He has been a career banker for over 20 years before becoming an Entrepreneur in 2004 and has business interests in the UAE, India and Canada. He brings in a lot of expertise in Deal Structuring, Financing & Complex M&A as well as JV transactions across a broad sectrum of industries.

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Ajmal Sharafuddin

Co-Founder & Co-CEO
ClutchI Capital

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Ajmal Sharafuddin

Co-Founder & Co-CEO, ClutchI Capital

Ajmal is a skillful strategist and visionary entrepreneur. He always looks out to meet new people and work on new opportunities that can transform Entrepreneurs and Businessmen. He has enormous experience in Business Strategy, Startups, Investments, Family Business Advisory, Mergers & Acquisitions, Business localization, Project Reports, Business Standardization and Expansions.

He has been part of several initiatives including setting up many startups in the Middle East, Government BOT Projects, M&A for some of the leading & reputable organizations in the region especially the startup entrepreneurs recognize him as their mentor.

Ajmal is the co-founder of Clutchi Capital, and Clutchi Consultancy Services and Creativigy are both under its umbrella. He is a member of Public Listed IT companies in Bangalore, and he holds equity in platshop.ae (Dubai), ICareFix (Kuwait) and Ess Energy saving company (KSA). Lastly, he is a shareholder of one of the most trusted names in the market, Aster Medical Group.

Startups

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Technology

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Fintech

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Blockchain

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Ecommerce

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Healthtech

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Cleantech

Are you a startup and you want to be part of The Equity Room?

Contact Us

Contact us:

Ticketing and general enquiries:
04 521 7454
info@gulfevents.ae

For Sponsorship related enquiries:
+971 50 991 9081
management@strideplus.com

For Start-ups and related enquiries:
+971 4 521 7454
info@gulfevents.ae

To become an investor or shark:
+971 - 4 521 7454
info@gulfevents.ae

21st November, 2018

Madinat Theatre, Jumeirah
Dubai, United Arab Emirates.