US embassy joins US-Pakistan women’s council and Paklaunch in celebrating women-led start-up competition winners

Celina Ali

Islamabad: US Deputy Chief of Mission Andrew Schofer joined the U.S.-Pakistan Women’s Council and Paklaunch in announcing the winners of a pitch competition for women-led startups at a ceremony today at National Science and Technology Park.

First Prize winner is Arooba Tayab of for “Revolutionizing B2B eProcurement as per Global Compliances/Standard Operating Procedures.”

First runner-up is Aiman Khan of SLOSH AI Solutions for “Systems with Life-Changing and Optimal Solutions for Humanity.”

Second runner-up is Romana Rafi of Technoknowledge Pvt. Ltd. for “Coding is Today’s Language of Creativity: All Our Children Deserve a Chance to Become Creators instead of Consumers of Computer Science.”

The three winners will receive expert-level, one-on-one mentoring through Paklaunch and Amazon Web Services (AWS) and will be showcased to potential clients and investors.

Today’s ceremony marked the culmination of a months-long competitive process. More than 1,000 women-led start-ups applied for 50 available slots. Of those 50, fifteen were chosen as finalists to travel to Islamabad and pitch their ideas before a distinguished panel of judges, including Paklaunch founder Aly Fahd and 500 Global Chief Operating Officer Courtney Powell.

Deputy Chief of Mission Schofer praised the finalists in his remarks: “Today’s finalists have brought incredible innovation, courage, and creativity to this competition, with pitches that respond to real-life issues facing Pakistanis. Getting to this point has taken a lot of hard work and determination. It’s been an extremely competitive process. I hope that you are as proud of yourselves as we are of each of you.”

Since 2012, the U.S. Mission to Pakistan has funded more than 181 entrepreneurship-related projects valued at $14.7 million.