Microsoft’s Imagine Cup 2016 returns to the UAE
The Imagine Cup 2016 competition will be held at the Ritz Carlton, Abu Dhabi on 26th April
Microsoft's has announce the return of its Imagine Cup 2016, a student contest for technology students and entrepreneurs in the UAE.
The competition invites youths, aged 16 years or older, to develop technology ideas from raw concepts and submit business plans on how they would present their product to market.
The teams can enter one of three categories; five finalists have been shortlisted from each category and now Microsoft's chosen judges will select a first, second and third place. Each of the three first-placed teams will automatically qualify to compete in the Pan-Arab semi-finals to be held in Egypt in May.
"We received 173 proposals this year from UAE teams - 26 in the Games category, 68 in Innovation and 79 in World Citizenship," said Samer Abu Ltaif, regional general manager at Microsoft Gulf. "This represents an all-time record in the Gulf region since the competition was launched in 2003. Today we find ourselves immersed in innovation - social media, mobile devices and cloud computing. Imagine Cup represents Microsoft's commitment towards UAE's vision in building a knowledge based economy and nurturing the creativity nestled in young people to innovate. Any one of our UAE finalists could bring mankind the next big thing, and that is a really exciting prospect for us."
The World Citizenship class challenges entrants to solve community challenges. Finalists in this category are: Imagine SWC from the Higher College of Technology (Women's campus); Avengineers from American University in Dubai; TechBytes from Middlesex University; DAQS from New York University, Abu Dhabi; and Illumination from American University in Dubai.
Judges for the category are: Mohamed Al Qadhi, vice chairman, Al Bayt Mitwahid Association; Sultan Al-Hajji, vice president and chief strategy general council officer, Total; Ahmed Waheed, partner business evangelism manager, Gulf, Microsoft; and Daniel dos Reis, senior portfolio manager, Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority.
This year, the UAE finals will be held at the Ritz Carlton in Abu Dhabi on 26th April, and supported by Al Bayt Mitwahid Association, a UAE-based initiative founded by employees of the Crown Prince Court to promote solidarity between UAE communities.
The Imagine Cup is now in its 14th edition and it is part of Microsoft's YouthSpark programme is a global CSR initiative, which launched in 2012, and aims at delivering educational, employment and entrepreneurial opportunities for more than 300m young people around the world.