Amman's startup arena just got BIGger.

Christine is a journalist from South Africa, who has lived and worked in Europe, Africa and the Middle East, covering everything from hard news to art to business & tech. Having been bitten by the travel bug as an infant, Christine finds it fairly easy to uproot herself in search of new adventures and stories. With degrees in both fine arts and journalism, she’s equally interested in visual storytelling as well as the written word. Having been part of three launch teams of three different media startups in her lifetime, she’s intimately familiar with what it takes to get a publication off the ground.
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Orange Jordan’s latest accelerator programme focused on supporting growth-stage tech companies went live this past week, according to an announcement.

Named Business Innovation Growth, or BIG, and first initiated in December 2015, the accelerator will see its first five companies graduate this month. They include Trevx, Digat Inventions, Yaqut, Play 3arabi, and Masmoo3.

In partnership with StartupJO, a Jordanian company providing support services to entrepreneurs, BIG comes as part of telecom oOrange Jordan’s new corporate strategy – Essentials 2020.

Other partners include business accelerator, Oasis500 and Roya TV.

The accelerator offers local companies access to a 120-day programme that consists of mentorship, business development training, and a co-working space at King Hussein Business Park.

Additionally, BIG will give startups access to Orange’s international network, resources, and additional perks—such as the opportunity to attend an international startup conference, as participating companies did this past December when Orange Jordan sent them to the RiseUp Summit conference in Cairo.

StartupJO, launched in 2014 by Jordanian entrepreneur Saeed Omar, will oversee the day-to-day operations of running BIG’s co-working space as the accelerator looks to find its place in Amman’s tech scene, Wamda reported.

“On average, 9 out of 10 startups fail, and in developing markets like that of Jordan, even greater challenges emerge. This is where growth-mode accelerator programs like BIG come into play,” said Orange Jordan’s CEO, Jerome Henique, in a press release.

BIG also joins Jordan’s existing accelerators and incubators like Oasis 500 and iPark, as well as initiatives like MENA Apps and the Founder Institute. On top of that, there are various other support services like Endeavour Jordan and Queen Rania Center for Entrepreneurship designed to empower local startups.

BIG’s first batch of companies:

Trevx is a free online audio and music streaming and search platform, offering a service that mimics Spotify and Google blended together.

Yaqut is an Arabic-language eBook library app with a gamified monetization strategy.

Digat is a middleware developer specializing in real-time Data Distribution Services (DDS).

Play 3arabi produces social games optimized for mobile and tailored to MENA audiences.

Masmoo3 produces and publishes Arabic audiobooks and has a digital library that is available both online and offline for web and mobile users.