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Boeing and 1776 Partner to Support MENA Region Startups

Boeing will sponsor 1776’s Challenge Cup Dubai Pitch Competition and Dubai Campus

Dubai, United Arab Emirates, July 9, 2017 – Boeing (NYSE: BA) and 1776 today announced their partnership to support tech startups through the Middle East and North Africa. Through this partnership, Boeing will sponsor Challenge Cup Dubai, one of 75 local pitch competitions taking place in cities around the world as part of 1776’s Challenge Cup, a search for the best technology startups tackling challenges in complex, regulated industries. Pitch Competitions are organized events for entrepreneurs with business ideas, usually early-stage, who are in need of funding among other resources to grow. The entrepreneur or representative of the team presents in a few minutes to an audience of mostly investors, peers, and a judging panel for prize money or other resources for their business.

Boeing will also work directly with startups through the 1776 Dubai campus located in Jumeirah Emirates Towers, alongside the Dubai Future Accelerators.

“Because Boeing is a global company and knows that innovation happens everywhere, Challenge Cup Dubai is exciting for Boeing HorizonX as we look to cultivate the best and brightest minds from across the Middle East and North Africa,” said Steve Nordlund, Vice-President of Boeing HorizonX, the company’s innovation cell that focuses on accelerating potentially transformative aerospace technologies, manufacturing innovations and emerging business models. “We look forward to working with 1776 to harness business ideas and technologies we deem as possible game changers.”

HorizonX invests in early stage businesses and startups whose technologies support Boeing’s productivity and growth plans. Going beyond investment opportunities in disruptive technologies, Boeing HorizonX works with numerous organizations such as 1776 to encourage global entrepreneurial ecosystems and help entrepreneurs accelerate their paths to market.

“The global Challenge Cup is not only a series of local pitch competitions but also a platform to showcase startups from around the world to leading organizations, such as Boeing, looking for direct solutions and technological advances in their operations”, said Evan Burfield, 1776 global co-Founder & CEO. “At 1776, we are constantly seeking to provide opportunities to bridge the gap between startups and institutions to collaborate on transformative technologies.”

Boeing and 1776’s partnership will accelerate the continued growth of the innovation ecosystem both in Dubai and the broader Middle East, North Africa region. Through this relationship, 1776 will continue to activate its regional and global partner network to identify the best startups, especially those whose technology has the potential to transform the future of the aviation industry. Boeing will demonstrate its global commitment to innovation by nurturing the growth of startups participating in Challenge Cup Dubai, as well as those working in 1776’s Dubai campus.

“Boeing has been in the Middle East for over seven decades. During this time, we have worked tirelessly to ensure that we develop strategic partnerships in the region, to encourage and grow regional capabilities, skills and young talent in the communities we operate within,” said Bernard Dunn, President, Boeing Middle East, North Africa and Turkey. “The 1776 Challenge Cup fits perfectly within our plans to continue to build on Boeing’s heritage in the UAE, while also looking to the future with the Middle East and building local capacities.”

Startups applying to the 1776 Challenge Cup must be working within regulated sectors, for-profit, scalable, beyond idea stage with reasonable traction, and within specific funding and revenue brackets. All participating startups benefit from access to UNION, 1776’s digital platform, including expert advice, accelerator curriculum, pitch coaching, and networking opportunities.

The local Challenge Cup Dubai competition, which takes place September 21st, 2017, is one of 75 local Challenge Cup competitions worldwide. Each local winner will compete at the Global Finals at Challenge Festival in New York City in November 2017.

The deadline to apply for Challenge Cup Dubai is September 1st, 2017. The 2017 Challenge Cup is run entirely through 1776’s UNION platform, which connects more than 35 startup hubs around the world. For more information, please visit the event website here.

About Boeing

Boeing is the world’s largest aerospace company and leading manufacturer of commercial jetliners and defense, space and security systems, with more than 145,000 employees in 70 countries. Boeing products and tailored services include commercial and military aircraft, satellites, weapons, electronic and defense systems, launch systems, advanced information and communication systems, and performance-based logistics and training.

Since 1945, when Boeing first established its relationship with the Middle East, the company has developed sustainable and long-term relationships with key partners in the UAE and beyond to support the region’s aspirations for a successful aerospace manufacturing sector, while also encouraging future generations to contribute to regional development through partnerships in the education field. The company’s Engineering Training Program with Strata, its work as part of the Sustainable Bioenergy Research Consortium (SBRC) and its partnerships with education institutions such as the UAE Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT), Khalifa University, and UAE University are all prime examples of its efforts to support the UAE and regional development.

About 1776

1776 is a public benefit corporation that empowers startup ecosystems around the world to solve complex challenges. To accomplish this, we leverage our digital startup network, UNION; physical campuses in Washington, D.C., New York City, San Francisco and Dubai; a global startup pitch competition, Challenge Cup; and deep staff expertise in regulatory issues. We accelerate connections and outcomes among startups, corporations, and public institutions. For more information, please visit www.1776.vc and follow @1776 on Twitter and @1776vc on Instagram.

CONTACT:

Fakher Daghestani
Communications Director, IMEA
Boeing International
Tel: +971 50 6254855
Email: fakher.a.daghestani@boeing.com

Morgan Gress
Managing Director, Global Marketing
1776
Tel: +1 716 445 1509
Email: press@1776.vc