Bahrain has recently undergone a major transformation to cater to startups. The StartUp Bahrain ecosystem has launched to bring together the entire community, helping to make Bahrain the region’s hottest new hub for entrepreneurs.
But why Bahrain? What makes this collection of islands an exemplary place to launch your business idea? We at StartUp Bahrain have compiled a list of 10 reasons why Bahrain is the right choice for your next business venture.
- Bahrainis are a talented bunch. In the ICT sector alone, nine out of ten professionals hold a bachelor’s degree or better. Combine their skills with their enthusiasm, and you have high-octane startup fuel.
- They’re digitally switched-on too. Bahrain ranks fifteenth in the world in social media take-up and has the region’s highest mobile broadband usage, making it the perfect place to test your brilliant tech idea or app.
- Tamkeen is the government-backed labour fund that keeps local skills at the cutting edge – good for Bahrainis’ career prospects, but good for entrepreneurs too. It offers startups financial help with both wages and training.
- The talent may be concentrated in Bahrain, but your market covers the whole Gulf region – an $1.5 trillion economy. Our islands are at the geographical centre, with fast and easy access to all points by road, sea and air.
- Business operating costs are the region’s lowest – you could save as much as 30% compared to neighboring Gulf countries, which makes Bahrain the ideal low-risk testbed ahead of regional expansion.
- Entrepreneurs are flocking to Bahrain in unprecedented numbers. They’re attracted by the growing numbers of incubators and accelerators, and by the strong buzz of the community. And also, perhaps, by the fact that they can own 100% of their businesses and corporate tax is set at zero. But Bahrain has always been business friendly.
- Just how business friendly? Our online registration portal, Sijilat, means registering your business is now a seamless process and can be done in minutes.
- FinTech startups are loving our new regulatory sandbox. A virtual space that lets them test innovative tech on real customers for up to a year. Plenty of time to fine-tune and modify in advance of a full launch.
- If you’re looking for innovative new ways to raise capital, our new crowdfunding regulation has just been greenlit by the CBB. It comes in three flavors: equity-based, finance-based and Sharia-compliant.
- Great startup stories are already being told. Among others, Skiplino, Malaeb, WNNA, and GetBaqala, have been attracting customers and winning awards with the sheer quality and verve of their offerings.
But don’t just take our word for it. Ask some of the people who’ve already joined us, like Amjad Puliyali, co-founder of GetBaqala, who says: “Bahrain is a perfect market to test your idea and validate your assumptions without burning too much capital. That’s why I chose Bahrain to launch my startup.”
So why not join the party. If you’d like to know more about the startup ecosystem in Bahrain or would like to be a part of the StartUp Bahrain community, then get in touch via the StartUp Bahrain website here. And don’t forget to follow us on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn for future updates and live coverage of our exciting calendar of events!