Bahrain’s first business angels, Tenmou, announced the second group of local start-ups to receive their support. Chairman of Tenmou, Sami Jalal, said the three recipients were Ringco, a tyre retreading factory, Arteleus -- an indoor location system, and Doocan – a mobile catalogue applicant. Making the announcement at the Crowne Plaza Convention Centre, Bahrain, the chairman said he welcomed any sponsorship by way of finance or mentoring the projects supported by Tenmou.
The three initiatives received about BD30,000, the company said. That funding was about 30 per cent of the equity of the companies, said the company officials.
The first batch of start-ups comprised four entrepreneurs and together with the three supported in the second intitiative, Tenmou has altogether seven initiatives and the financial support extended to the seven was BD 500,000.
The applicants were selected on the basis of uniqueness of ideas and potential for regional expansion. They were also assessed for both their practical skills and passion for their respective propositions.
“The success of these start-up companies and the ripple effect they can create for the local and regional economy, including job creation, makes it a responsibility for all in the business community to reach out and support,” the chairman said..
Chief Executive Officer of Tenmou, Hasan Haider, introduced the entrepreneurs to the media. He said that Tenmou played the important and vital part of giving seed capital to the entrepreneurs, in addition to “supporting the start-up companies from their early days and watching them go fully operational, as our first group have now done.”
Tenmou’s strategic objective also involves mentorship, advice and assistance by sharing experience, business strategies and knowledge between generations of business community which is invaluable, he added.
“Significantly, Tenmou’s business model also provides funding by equity rather than debt. This ensures that start-ups are free from loans, and has the investors share in the risk of success of failure, rather than burdening the entrepreneurs financially”.
With investing in their equity Tenmou helps in the phase I take – off of the initiatives, said the CEO. He told the Bahrain News Agency that the three were selected from 72 initiatives placed before the board. “As for the remaining initiatives, we have kept them in the incubator and have pointed out the areas where they need to concentrate to gain our assistance. In the coming days we are sure that they will correct these anomalies and produce their revised plan,” the chief executive said.
Tenmou was established with a start-up capital of BD1 million ($2.7 million). It also provides support services at no cost to the entrepreneurs. In order to implement its long-term vision, the business angel has established firm contacts with influential public and private sector partners and supporters, including Economic Development Board (EDB), Bahrain Development Bank (BDB), ALBA, Hill +Knowlton Strategies, BDO Bahrain, 4SPOTS, Ernst and Young, Grant Thornton, Unisono and Microsoft, said the company. Tenmou’s current board includes Adel Maskati as Vice-Chairman, Fawaz Algosaibi, Mahmood AlKooheji, Abdulla Buhindi, Abdulhussain Dawani, and Shaikha Al Fadhel representing the BDB.
Later, Ringco head Fahad Al Ansari, told the BNA that with the initiatives of Tenmou, he was setting up the second tyre retreading company in Bahrain. “We will be retreading tyres of commercial vehicles and that will bring about a 50 per cent saving to the company. In addition, it will also bring back to the street about 67 per cent of all tyres going to the junkyard. This is a huge saving for the government,” he added.
He said the total investment was about two million dollars. Part of the money goes into the technology, which is from Italy. The total capacity for retreading would be 40 tyres in one shift – which is how he plans to start. The single shift would have about 15 employees. Later it will be 80 tyres when the two shifts are worked, he said.