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Data-Driven Blood Bank Donation Invention Scoops $100k Top Prize at Inaugural UK/Saudi MiSK Hackathon
Date:11/27/2016

LONDON and RIYADH, Saudi Arabia, November 27, 2016 /PRNewswire/ --

Saudi Arabia's MiSK Foundation today announces a new tech invention by Team Limitless, claiming to be the 'LinkedIn' of blood bank donation, as first prize at the first-ever UK/Saudi 'Medical Internet Of Things' Hackathon. The event took place from 25-27 November in London and Riyadh, and concluded today. 

The winning idea which is designed to revolutionise blood bank donation by connecting data profiles was dreamed up by Team Limitless of Saudi Arabia, comprising a mixed team of eight individuals aged 21-31 years. The winning team will now receive an investment of $100k and professional mentoring to start up their venture and take their idea to proof of concept stage.

Team Limitless comprises: Tareq Sangorah; Salman Alarifi; Monira Alhasan; Ibrahim Khalifa; Mazen Rukayni; Ahmed Isam; Faten Bader; and Riham Alobeidan. Commenting on their win, Tareq Sangorah said: "We're ecstatic and can hardly believe it. It's brilliant to win, but it's also been an amazing experience working collaboratively across two countries in this way and is such a life-changing opportunity for all of us. 

"We're all passionate about this idea which will revolutionise the current channel inefficiencies in blood donation - and we can't wait to take it to the next level to make a real difference and meet this need." 

Hundreds of 18-32 year olds took part in the 48 hour hackathon in London and Riyadh, joined together by live broadcast satellite. Cross-cultural teams collaborated to compete for investment in their health tech invention, awarded by an expert dual-nation judging panel. Judges included representatives from the British Council, international network HealthTech Women, Microsoft, Cisco, and a Professor and Robotics Surgeon at King Khaled Hospital, Riyadh.

Comments His Excellency, Dr. Tawfiq Al Rabiah, Minister of Health, Saudi Arabia: "This is the first time I've ever seen an event such as this in Saudi Arabia. I'm really impressed with the quality of the ideas and the people behind them. These are ideas that can genuinely save lives. 

"Vision 2030 is all about building a diversified economy that depends on knowledge. This first-of-its-kind UK/ Saudi hackathon from the MiSK Foundation demonstrates the calibre and innovation talent of our youth, who can help transform the whole country."

This first-of-its-kind dual nation event, which kicked off on Friday for 48 hours of marathon hacking, awarded Team Falcon from Saudi Arabia and Team Brain Balance, an all-female UK team, with second and third prizes of $50k and $35k investment respectively. 

Their awarded ideas included a medical drug vending machine (Team Falcon) and a medical health device to score and track anxiety levels (Team Brain Balance). As well as financial investment, the teams will also receive mentoring to take their innovative health tech inventions forward.

The MiSK Hackathon has the full support of the Deputy Crown Prince, HRH Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud, who founded MiSK as part of his vision to drive transformative change in Saudi Arabia. A key focus is driving youth enterprise and unlocking solutions in health technology innovation. 

The MiSK Hackathon has also been applauded by senior female figures for its ambition to reach, empower and inspire millions of young females into technology innovation and creative business within the UK and Saudi Arabia. 

More information is at http://www.miskhackathon.com

Notes to editor: 

MiSK Hackathon Judging Panel 

The UK panel consisted of: Liz Ashall-Payne, founder of the Organisation for the Review of Care and Health Applications; Greg Williams, CSO of mobile engagement platform SWAG'R; Rob De Feo, start-up solution architect, Amazon Web Services; and Maxine Mackintosh, UK Chair of international network, HealthTech Women.

The Saudi Arabia panel consisted of:  Abdullah Alswaha, Managing Director at Cisco; Deemah Alyahya, Executive Director at Microsoft; Amir Ramzan, Country Director at British Council; and Professor Abdullah Aldohayan, Robotics Surgeon at King Khaled Hospital, Riyadh.

About MiSK Foundation
Established in 2011, the MiSK Foundation cultivates learning and leadership to define a new talent for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The Foundation focuses on the country's youth, fosters talent, develops creative potential, and generates innovation. In this way, MiSK advances Saudi society in business and technology, and provides equal opportunity for women and men. MiSK, under the leadership of HRH Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud, pursues these goals by establishing partnership programmes with diverse local and global organisations.


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