One of the Middle East’s Hottest Start-Ups is an Obituary Site

The site allows users to post death announcements and funeral notices.

In the years since the 2011 Arab uprisings, countries in the Middle East and North Africa have plunged into protracted violence and political unrest. From Benghazi to Damascus to Baghdad, war and displacement have become the permanent conditions of many of those who live in the region. It’s perhaps unsurprising, then, and profoundly poignant that one of the top new techonology Middle East start-ups of the year is an online obituary platform called El Wafeyat. The website allows people to memorialize their dead loved ones publicly, as well as announce details of the funeral and recieve condolences. Yousef Samaa, a CEO of El Wafeyat, says it’s a service that was once provided by a newspaper industry that is no longer capable of delivering news efficiently.

"You can miss a wedding or a birthday, but you can’t miss their funeral," Samaa told Fast Co-Exist. "Not everyone reads the newspaper anymore, so there are no proper tools to get the news."

Based out of Cairo, the company was founded Samaa, Omar Hamdalla and Nesma El Far. After presenting their website to angel investor Dave McClure, he awarded them with a $100,000 investment throught his seed accelerator, 500 Startups.

“Ultimately, we would like to build a global product by changing people’s behavior towards obituaries, funerals and condolences; by offering a personalised, instant and cost-effective way to announce and send condolences,” El Far told CairoScene. “We have a unique product, so maybe in five years we’d get acquired by a giant tech company in Silicon Valley. Who knows?“


Between Alexa, Siri, and Google, artificial intelligence is quickly changing us and the way we live. We no longer have to get up to turn on the lights or set the thermostat, we can find the fastest route to work with a click, and, most importantly, tag our friends in pictures. But interacting with the world isn't the only thing AI is making easier – now we can use it save the world, too.

Keep Reading Show less
Good News

An anonymous White House official claims President Trump cruelly limited Hispanic immigrants in their new book, "A Warning."

The book, to be released on November 19, gives an alleged insider account of the Trump White House and paints a picture of the president as a chaotic man who lacks the mental and moral acumen required for the job.

The anonymous staffer says that Trump once feigned a Hispanic accent and made fun of women attempting to immigrate to the U.S.

Keep Reading Show less
via KTVU / YouTube

The 63-year-old Oakland-Alameda Coliseum, currently branded the RingCentral Coliseum, is one of the most decrepit sports venues in America.

The home to the the NFL's Oakland Raiders (until they move to Las Vegas next season) and MLB's A's, is notoriously known as the Black Hole and has made headlines for its frequent flooding and sewage issues.

One of the stadium's few positive aspects is its connection to public transportation.

Keep Reading Show less
Hero Video
Yad Vashem

Since 1992, the Jewish Foundation for the Righteous has been holding reunion ceremonies between Holocaust survivors and rescuers once a year. But the tradition is coming to an end, as many have died or are too frail to travel. What might be the last reunion of its kind took place when a 92-year-old woman met up with the two surviving family members that she helped hide during the Holocaust, and their descendants.

Sarah Yanai and Yossi Mor introduced Melpomeni Dina (nee Gianopoulou) to their almost 40 family members, all decedents of the Mordechai family, the family of seven that Dina and her two sisters hid during WWII. "There are no words to describe this feeling," Dina told the Jeruselum Post. "It is very emotional for us to be together again."

Keep Reading Show less
via Facebook / Autumn Dayss

Facebook user and cosplayer Autumn Dayss has stirred up a bit of Halloween controversy with her last-minute costume, an anti-Vaxx mother.

An image she posted to the social network shows a smiling Dayss wearing a baby carrier featuring a small skeleton. "Going to a costume party tonight as Karen and her non-vaccinated child," the caption over the image reads.

Keep Reading Show less