Old wisdom holds that a startup thrives more if it faces less competition in the market. Well, it was the thing from earlier times but not anymore. New research shows that,

If a startup faces more competition, the odds of its long-term survival elevates

Let’s take some facts into account and see whether a startup in competition flourishes more than a startup that follows the Blue Ocean Strategy. Nissan-Renault, a leading manufacturer of zero-emission cars, invested 5 Billion Dollars to develop a range of electric and hybrid vehicles. Its CEO Carlos Ghosn was of the view that Nissan-Renault is lonely at the top. While speaking at the Frankfurt motor show, Carlos said he welcomes other automakers to invest in the development of hybrid vehicles as a bigger market would eventually help bump-start the market. “The more companies that buy into electric cars, the better it is,” he said. Challenging the forces in atmosphere, keeps startups to remain focused on their niche.

Edge 196 is a platform that hosts a literally ‘Global’ Startup Challenge in FinTech domain. This annual startup challenge empowers innovation and startups across the globe. Startups compete in this challenge that runs across 26 global clusters (covering 196 countries). The purpose behind conducting this competition is to find the startups that have the potential to be the next big player in the market.

Edge196 Global Startup Challenge – Fintech

Process: The startups from Pakistan can participate in Dubai Cluster where they will be competing against teams from UAE, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Bahrain, Yemen, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Kuwait. 3 startups will be short-listed from them and invited for an online pitch (video conference followed by Q/A). The 26 successful startups, one from each cluster, will then be offered the term sheet they have to comply with and an acceleration program that is run by one of Edge 196’s global partners. The winner of each cluster will get a 50,000 USD investment. And the final winner out of 26 will get an investment of 1 Million USD.

Competition is in FinTech domain, so your startup must lie in any of the following areas,


Global Market Access: The startups with potential are facilitated and presented into the global market for broader audience.
Investment: The winning startup from each cluster gets investment of 50,000 USD to finance their project. One potential startup across the globe gets the investment of whopping 1 Million USD.
Acceleration: 3 successful startups from each cluster get the chance to enter into acceleration program that is run by one of Edge 196’s global partners.
Startup Summit: The final 26 successful startups are then invited to the Grand Finale to pitch their ideas.
Continuity Investment: The selected startup has the chance to raise its continuity investment through Global Investment Partners. (Investment is equity based).

Eligibility Criteria

A startup must fulfil the following requirements in order to get into the competition:

  • It must be a prototype and has a scope in the market.
  • It is preferred that a startup has influence in terms of clients/revenue.
  • A startup should be fresh, no more than 3 years in development.
  • Startup should have a significant audience target and impending to go global.
  • A startup should have at least 2 people working on it.

Selection Criteria

The jury will select the startups on below parameters.

  • Problem Solving: Startups with a simple solution and a powerful impact.
  • Team: Passionate founders and a team that believes in their vision.
  • Innovation: The technology behind the original solution and future scope.
  • Global Scalability: Sustainable startups that have scalable models.


Startups can apply online to enter into the competition. The last date of application is different for each cluster. Pakistani startups! you have to apply in Dubai Cluster for which,

  • the deadline is: 9th Nov, 2017
  • evaluation of the startups: 24th November, 2017 (shortlisting)
  • online pitch session: 6th Dec, 2017 (video conference)
  • grand finale: TBA

Application Link

Dubai Cluster: UAE, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Bahrain, Yemen, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Kuwait

In case, you are wondering about rest of the clusters. Here are the cluster locations from all over the word with application deadlines.

26 Cluster Countries with deadlines

26 Cluster Countries with deadlines

  1. 30 Oct 2017, Berlin Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, Czech Republic
  2. 31 Oct 2017, Toronto Canada, Greenland, Mexico
  3. 01 Nov 2017, London England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
  4. 02 Nov 2017, Paris France, Austria, Luxemberg, Ireland
  5. 03 Nov 2017, Barcelona Spain, Portugal, Italy, Malta
  6. 04 Nov 2017, Stockholm Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Norway
  7. 05 Nov 2017, Panama City Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Costa Rica, Cuba, Curacao, Dominica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala,Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Nicaragua, Puerto Rico ,Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caico
  8. 06 Nov 2017, Kiev Albania, Macadonia, Serbia, Bosnia & Herzgonia, Andorra, Ukraine, Moldova, Kosovo, Monaco, Montenegro, San Marino
  9. 07 Nov 2017, Budapest Romania, Bulgaria, Greece, Croatia, Slovakia, Hungary, Cyprus, Slovenia
  10. 08 Nov 2017, Tallinn Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Belarus
  11. 09 Nov 2018, Dubai UAE, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Bahrain, Yemen, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Kuwait
  12. 10 Nov 2017, Sao Paulo Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela, French Guiana, Suriname, Guyana
  13. 11 Nov 2017, Istanbul Turkey, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Armenia, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan
  14. 12 Nov 2017, Lagos Nigeria, Ghana, Tunisia, Algeria, Libya, Chad, Niger, Morocco, Western Sahara, Mauritania, Mali, Senegal, The Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Cote d’ivore, Togo, Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Republic of the Congo, Cape Verde
  15. 13 Nov 2017, Johannesburg South Africa, Swaziland, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Angola, Mozambique, Madagascer, Mauritius, Mayotte, Reunion, Comoros, Lesotho
  16. 14 Nov 2017, Nairobi Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Somalia, Burundi, Rwanda, Ethiopia, South Sudan, Djibouti, Eritrea, Sudan, Egypt, Democratic Republic of Congo
  17. 15 Nov 2017, Jakarta Indonesia, Brunei, Philippines, East Timor, Papua New Guinea,
  18. 16 Nov 2017, Buenos Aires Argentina, Peru, Chile, Paraguay, Uruguay, Ecuador , Bolivia
  19. 17 Nov 2017, Hong Kong China, Russia, Mongolia, North Korea, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan
  20. 18 Nov 2017, Singapore Malaysia, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore
  21. 19 Nov 2017, Sydney Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, Samoa, Tonga, Tuvalu, Australia, New Zealand, Melanesia
  22. 20 Nov 2017, Geneva Switzerland, Vatican City State, Iceland, Liechtenstein
  23. 21 Nov 2017 10:25am, Gandhinagar India, Srilanka, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Myanmar, Maldives
  24. 22 Nov 2017, Tokyo South Korea, Japan, Taiwan
  25. 23 Nov 2017, Tel Aviv Israel, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Palestinian
  26. 24 Nov 2017, New York USA

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