L’Oréal and AstroLabs Launch ‘TechQuest’ for Innovative Beauty Solutions in the Middle East

L'Oréal and AstroLabs Launch 'TechQuest' for Innovative Beauty Solutions in the Middle East

## L’Oréal and AstroLabs Launch ‘TechQuest’ for Innovative Beauty Solutions

**Dubai, UAE – October 10, 2023**

In a groundbreaking partnership, L’Oréal Middle East and AstroLabs have launched L’Oréal TechQuest, an open innovation challenge for homegrown startups in the UAE and Saudi Arabia. This initiative aims to drive co-creation of innovative beauty solutions and nurture promising tech entrepreneurs.

Bridging the Gap between Startups and Industry Giants

TechQuest is part of the wider L’Oréal Big Bang Beauty Tech Innovation Program, which seeks to discover and support promising startups from South Asia Pacific, Middle East, and North Africa (SAPMENA). This collaboration between L’Oréal, a global beauty leader, and AstroLabs, an ecosystem builder, bridges the gap between startups’ agility and the established infrastructure of the beauty industry.

Empowering Startups with Real-World Pilots

Through TechQuest, startups are given the opportunity to develop and pilot their beauty tech solutions in collaboration with L’Oréal experts. This unique platform provides valuable feedback, exclusive data, and mentorship, enabling startups to refine their innovations and accelerate their growth.

Recognizing Game-Changing Solutions

From the 535 startups that applied, 14 were shortlisted to develop solutions in areas such as warehouse optimization, data fragmentation, AI for social listening, and AI in regulatory affairs. After a rigorous evaluation process, four innovative startups emerged as the TechQuest winners:

* **Exponential Solutions (10xDS):** AI in Regulatory Affairs
* **Ahad Security Transforming:** Data Fragmentation
* **Yango Robotics:** Warehouse Optimization
* **Aim Technologies:** AI for Social Listening

These winning startups will compete in the ‘L’Oréal Big Bang Beauty Tech Innovation Program’ Grand Finale in Singapore in October 2024, vying for funding and mentorship opportunities with L’Oréal globally.

Driving Economic Growth through Innovation

L’Oréal Middle East’s Chief Digital and Marketing Officer, Olfa Messaoudi, emphasized the importance of SMEs in driving innovation within the region. “With TechQuest, we want to tap into their agility and creativity to find beauty solutions that make a positive difference,” she said.

Roland Daher, Chief Executive Officer of AstroLabs, added, “This initiative aims to accelerate market innovations and integrate them into real-world applications for industry leaders like L’Oréal Middle East.”

### About L’Oréal Middle East

L’Oréal, the world’s leading beauty company, has had a presence in the Gulf region since the 1960s. Its Middle East subsidiary, established in 1998, operates in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and other GCC countries, employing over 500 individuals from 54 nationalities. L’Oréal Middle East offers a diverse portfolio of 31 beauty brands across various divisions, including Consumer, Professional, Luxury, and L’Oréal Dermatological Beauty.

### About AstroLabs

AstroLabs is an ecosystem builder that fosters the growth of people, companies, and innovation capabilities in the MENA region. With a decade of experience, AstroLabs has established a vibrant community across three coworking spaces in the UAE and KSA. As MENA’s innovation partner, AstroLabs collaborates with governmental entities, corporates, and the entrepreneurial ecosystem to design and facilitate ecosystem transformations through various programs and initiatives.

### Contact Information:

**For L’Oréal Middle East:**
Jihane Bachir, Corporate Affairs & Engagement Director
jihane.bachir@loreal.com, +971 581578999

**For AstroLabs:**
Lara Fakih, Director of Communications

By Divya

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