$1.6 billion was the total income of Astana Hub participants for five years
Since its official launch in 2018, the Astana Hub International Technopark has become the largest innovation hub in Central Asia. During this time, the total income of IT companies that became participants of the technopark amounted to $ 1.6 billion. The volume of attracted investments reached $517 million, and the number of jobs created exceeded 20 thousand.
The activities of Astana Hub are aimed at creating and developing an ecosystem for IT business, training IT specialists and supporting startup projects. To date, 1,331 IT companies have been registered in the technopark, including 372 with foreign participation. They receive comprehensive support, including business development and scaling programs, special tax and visa conditions, information and educational support and material infrastructure.
"The initiative to create Astana Hub originated back in 2016. Kazakhstan should play an active role in the global technological transformation. It is no coincidence that the Head of State has set us the task of increasing the volume of IT exports to $1 billion by 2026 and making Kazakhstan one of the leading digital centers in the region. All our initiatives, including joint programs with Google for Startups and Draper University, support for the launch of Silkroad Innovation Hub - a platform for our IT startups in Silicon Valley, holding Digital Bridge and Digital Almaty IT forums, are tools to achieve this goal. And, of course, all our efforts are being carried out with the active support of the Ministry of Digital Development and our partners," said Magzhan Madiyev, CEO of Astana Hub.
Astana Hub offers acceleration and incubation programs, the purpose of which is to support startups in attracting venture capital investments and expanding into global markets. For example, within the framework of the Silkway Accelerator, conducted jointly with Google For Startups, more than 900 applications for participation were received, and after three streams of the acceleration program, 37 of the best projects successfully completed it, reaching a total capitalization of more than $350 million and monthly revenue of over $1 million. During the entire period of the program, startups have raised more than $7.5 million in total and scaled in the markets of the UAE, Turkey, the USA, etc. The Startup Garage program offers comprehensive support at the early stages of development, and Scalerator helps Kazakhstani startups move into global business. During the implementation of Scalerator, the participants concluded export contracts and agreements totaling more than 304 million tenge.
The Hero Training acceleration program, implemented in partnership with Draper University with the support of the World Bank, provides startups with a unique opportunity to get into Silicon Valley. To date, 27 startups have already gone to the epicenter of innovation, and in the future there are plans to send about 30 promising projects from Central Eurasia every year.
Projects of Astana Hub participants are in high demand both on domestic and global markets. Kazakh startups not only attract millions of users, but also actively gain international recognition. For example, the Citix information and navigation system has successfully entered the markets of Turkey and the UAE. Face recognition and fake search system Beyne.ai moved on to creating entire ecosystems and integrating with large companies. Alaqan, specializing in palm pattern biometrics, is introducing its product in 500 Turkish clinics. SmarTestPrep has entered the markets of Indonesia, Vietnam and Latin America, helping more than 1,000 applicants to receive scholarships totaling $ 10 million. Droppy released the game on the Play Market and Apple Store, having conducted about 120 iterations with ministries of the Middle East, the United States and Latin America. iDos Games startup has more than 300 thousand registered and active users from 170 countries, which indicates its important role in the global gaming industry. CerebraAI, specializing in artificial intelligence and neuroradiology for stroke diagnosis, was among the world's best startups according to TechCrunch in the USA. And this is just a small part of the array of promising startups that are raising our country to the world stage in the field of information technology.
More than 20 thousand people have been trained in educational programs such as Tech Orda, Alem School, No Code/Low Code School, Startup School, Beta Career, Freelance School, IT-Aiel, and others. In addition, Astana Hub has several innovation centers, including Blockchain, SpaceTech, 5G, GameDev, Defense Tech, OTS Digital Center, and, of course, AI-Center, focused on the development and scaling of projects based on artificial intelligence.
The development of regional IT hubs is one of the priority tasks of Astana Hub, aimed at the formation of local IT community, a steady flow of IT talents and their development in the regions of Kazakhstan. At the initiative of ICRIAP RK, with the support of akimats and private business, IT hubs have been opened in 11 regions of the country: Abai IT Valley (Semey), Kyzylorda Hub (Kyzylorda), Digital Jetisu (Taldykorgan), Zhambyl Hub (Taraz), Oskemen IT Hub (Oskemen), Jaiq Hub (Uralsk), Turkistan IT Hub (Turkestan), Aqtobe IT Hub (Aktobe), Qostanai It Hub (Kostanay), Aqmola IT Hub ( Kokshetau), Pavlodar Hub (Pavlodar). By the end of this year, two more hubs will be officially launched - in Atyrau and Mangistau regions.
Astana Hub regularly hosts various events, such as Pizza Pitch, Speaker Night, Startuphana and others. Of course, the annual international forum Digital Bridge, which has achieved the status of the largest IT forum in Central Asia, is of particular importance in the work of the technopark. This year, the forum dedicated to the topic of artificial intelligence gathered more than 30 thousand participants, including delegations from 30 countries, representatives of more than 300 IT companies, 450 speakers, over 100 investors and business angels, as well as more than 150 startups.
Recall that the official opening of the Astana Hub International Technopark took place on November 6, 2018. Technopark is working on the development of an innovative culture and improving the ecosystem for startups, providing acceleration services, technological business incubation, educational programs, as well as organizing various events and consultations to support and stimulate the development of technological entrepreneurship.
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