Forward KSA:
Building Saudi Arabia’s Tech Ecosystem

Over 1,000 Saudis trained in digital and entrepreneurial skills through a two-year capability development campaign by AstroLabs

17 Saudi-founded tech startups graduated in December 2019 from an intensive three-month accelerator program

About Forward

Forward KSA was a two-year digital skills capability development initiative in Saudi Arabia spearheaded by AstroLabs with the support of the U.S.-Middle East Partnerships Initiative, Latham & Watkins, and Google for Startups.

Over the course of the program, we trained over 1,000 Saudis in topics such as business model validation, market sizing, digital marketing, legal advisory, fundraising, scaling up and growth, building teams, setting the right metrics, and pitching best practices.


In December 2019, 17 startups graduated from the Forward KSA Accelerator, a program designed for the highest potential startups in the Kingdom to join for three months and gain exposure to top mentors and instruction to help them scale up.

Talent Creation & Startup Acceleration

AstroLabs ran a bespoke accelerator program for 17 selected tech startups over the course of three months, culminating in a pitch event featuring the top graduating companies.

“Class is the real deal! I have gotten at least 50 times the value from Class. I wish I would have thought of it first.”

- Muneeb Arrabi

Our partners

The top startups graduating from Forward KSA


Saudi health and fitness tech startup headquartered in Jeddah, to facilitate and ease access to sports and fitness for a healthier society.


Matchmaking and social network for gamers (won the top entertainment apps award in KSA).


Online platform, that disrupts the auto-parts sector by being the only platform that combines both used and new parts markets to its consumers.

IFF Machines

A rising eCommerce platform, that makes having advance technology machines possible including 3D printers, laser printers, and others.


Digital solution that aims to improve the quality of care and educational services for individuals with special needs by allowing service providers such as schools, centers & clinics to design and monitor individualized treatment plans.


A food subscription app that helps employees save time and eat healthier by delivering fresh healthy meals to their offices every day.

Forward Accelerator Mentors

Ahmad Abugosh

Director of Marketing & Learning Programs, AstroLabs

Dr. Abdulla Elyas

Co-founder and CPO, Careem

Eyad Latif

Founding Partner, AstroLabs

Farzal Dojki

Founder, DotZero

Jad El-Boustani

Executive Director, Middle East Venture Partners (MEVP)

Jihad Alammar

Principal, STV Capital

Louis Lebbos

Founding Partner, AstroLabs

Mazen AlDarrab

Founder, Zid

Muhammed Mekki

Founding Partner, AstroLabs

Mustafa Nabelsi

Country Director, KSA

Osama M. Ashri

Founder, Saudi Entrepreneurial Ecosystem (SEE)

Osama Natto

Founder, Natto Innovation Labs

Rakan Al Eidi

Board Member, Oqal and Co-founder, Cown

Roland Daher

Chief Executive Officer, AstroLabs

Wael Nafee

VP of Product, Careem