The Nest I/O was set up in Karachi, on January 1st, 2015, as a Technology Incubator by The Pakistan Software Houses Association for IT & ITES (P@SHA), in partnership with Google for Entrepreneurs and Samsung, and with support from the US State Department.
The Nest I/O provides budding entrepreneurs with space, infrastructure, facilities and knowledge sessions as well as access to a network of mentors and potential investors. Since its inception, The Nest I/O has established itself as one of the leading brands in the startup ecosystem by churning out high quality startups and promoting diversity in terms of both demographics as well as the areas in which the startups work.
About The Nest I/O
With our mission of blazing the trail for the next generation of entrepreneurs in Pakistan, we have not only managed to run several incubation cycles successfully, but have also expanded our outreach extensively. Some of our most popular initiatives during this time have been Startup Weekends, Innovation Breakfast Series, partnering with Ilm ideas on their EdTech Innovation Challenge, the Sindh TechEd Initiative and our global flagship technology conference, 021Disrupt.
These projects have enabled The Nest I/O to bring together a community of entrepreneurs, investors, trainers, mentors, and opinion leaders together on one platform to ignite an entrepreneurial spirit among a greater audience.
What is Startup Weekend all about?
Why Startup Weekend Women?
Startup Weekend is an immersion event –a unique experience where entrepreneurs and aspiring entrepreneurs get a glimpse of what it means to launch a startup. Through Startup Weekend, entrepreneurs get a platform to share their ideas, form diverse teams and launch their startups over the course of a weekend. It all starts on Friday night, with the stage open for participants to share their best ideas and inspire others to join their teams. During Saturday and Sunday, teams focus on finding a business model for their ideas and creating a minimum workable product (MVP). During the development of the idea, the teams have at their disposal a team of mentors and coaches made up of successful entrepreneurs and industry experts from all over Pakistan. On Sunday, teams present their solutions, receive valuable feedback from our panel of judges, and the top three teams receive prizes and recognition to take their new startup forward.
Women account for 50% of the world’s working-age population. Yet they are largely misrepresented in the workplace. The problem is further exacerbated in a country like Pakistan which ranks 143rd out of a 144 countries on the World Economic Forum Global Gender Gap Index. If we are to progress as a nation, we have to make efforts to create a more inclusive society.
This is why Startup Weekend Women aims to foster female entrepreneurship and facilitate the creation of women-owned businesses. Our goal is to inspire females to take up leadership roles in startup teams, and to connect more women to the resources and startup weekend women mentors available in startup communities. The broader aim is to encourage females to step forth and play an active part in the Pakistani workplace. As organizers, we will be actively recruiting more women in the role of participants, mentors, organizers and judges. Men are also welcome and are encouraged to bring a female friend or a colleague to the event.
The Nest I/O organized the first-ever edition of Startup Weekend Women in March 2018. The response exceeded all our expectations. Whether it was the sight of a 13-year old passionately pitching her idea on how to prevent harassment or a group of university students set on reviving the tradition of bargain shopping from Sunday Bazaar, it warmed our hearts to see the energy and enthusiasm on display.
This time, with the help of our partners, The Nest I/O aims to surpass the benchmark set by the last Startup Weekend Women event.—PR