The Bahraini business delegation who accompanied His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa on his official visit to France, made stops at Station F, the startup campus in Paris, and Ḗcole 42, an innovative programming college.
During the visit to Station F, the delegation was treated to a detailed overview of the campus and the benefits it offers to promising entrepreneurs. Members of the delegation were impressed with France’s outstanding global pioneering experience in technology, which brought comparisons to Bahrain’s own aspirations to transform itself into a regional hub for entrepreneurs and startups. The Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB), along with partners from the public and private sector, have been working relentlessly to support startups and create an environment that empowers entrepreneurs.
Established in 2017, Station F is the world’s largest startup campus, housing an entire entrepreneurial ecosystem under one roof. Spanning an area of 34,000 square metres, the campus features more than 3,000 startup desks, eight event spaces, 31 training programs, and a soon-to-be-completed three-tower living space for entrepreneurs.
In line with the goals of the EDB and its partners from the public and private sectors, the delegation’s visit to cole 42 focused on the college’s world-renowned educational model. The visit allowed the Bahraini business delegation to explore unique ways of educating an innovation-focused generation, following the directives of the government of Bahrain towards a digital transformation in line with a knowledge-based economy.
Ḗcole 42, launched in 2016, constitutes a case study of a pioneering non-profit educational institution that offers tuition-free learning. It has earned the respect of a number of influential people in the technology space, including innovators from Silicon Valley, such as Evan Spiegel, co-founder of Snapchat, and Jack Dorsey, co-founder of Twitter. The college welcomes applicants from all backgrounds, ages, and educational levels, and the selection process is completed digitally.
During the official visit to France, 12 agreements and memoranda of understanding with French companies were signed, amounting to US$2 billion. The agreements are aimed at boosting bilateral economic relations and co-investment across numerous sectors.