Published in



Nov 17, 2020

5 min read

The Story of Zaka: An Ambitious Artificial Intelligence Startup

Fighting against all odds, leveraging local talent, and fostering global change with intelligent transformations!

Given the company’s Lebanese origin, the name Zaka was inspired by the Lebanese dialect of the formal Arabic word for intelligence, “ذكاء” (pronounced: th-ah-kaa).

With Zaka, we are building a dream of driving a positive and impactful integration with smart technology in the Middle East and North African (MENA) markets. We see a future where all members of our society are relevant market players and where Zaka can help prepare our communities for revolutionary shifts in market practices that we cannot imagine today. We are here to help guide you, your communities, and your organizations to create the transformation of tomorrow, and we are here to do it together!

With a little less than 2 years in the market, we are on a journey to democratize Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the MENA region and globally through sharing knowledge, building solutions, and connecting people. We bring this mission to life through our 3 pillar services: education, consultancy, and augmentation.

Let’s dive into why these services and what they can offer you today!

But first, let’s digress and go back to where it all started..

Chapter 1 — A One Man Show

Once upon a time, there was a guy who was very much interested in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the wonders it can bring to his people. He thought to himself, “Are there others in Lebanon that share my fascination? If not, I shall huff and puff and create a community that fosters this interest in my nation!!” And so he began to organize meetups, only to discover more and more people from his country that shared his fascination and were eager to discover and advance in this field.

Without much hesitation, the guy launched a Lebanese NGO — Beirut AI — that would become home to the largest (and only) AI community in Lebanon! The guy found an excited, driven team and built this community into what is today a community of 2000+ AI enthusiastic individuals!

Beirut AI was on a mission to enable everyone to understand and apply AI in the Lebanese community! Yet the guy was always on the search for something more…

Chapter 2 — And Then There Were Three

A few months into the rise of the Beirut AI community, the guy came across two new friends. The first was a girl full of energy and excited to build a community with a global impact! The other was a quiet one yet full of dreams of making education accessible to everyone.

For all this guy knew, these two girls would later come to play a huge role in the growth and spread of his community and dream!

Chapter 3 — The Next Big Thing

Celebrating the start of Zaka

One summer evening, the three friends sat in a coffee shop at the ocean side thinking about their next big AI Bootcamp. They wanted to take their efforts beyond the boundaries of home and share their excitement with the world!

With passion and a lot of hard work, they were able to take their AI Bootcamp abroad to two other neighboring countries! It was then that they realized how much value their mission at Beirut AI can bring to countries around the MENA region and globally.

And so the three friends pushed and dreamed a vision that brought to life Zaka — a community-driven AI startup. Based in Lebanon, Zaka was born to serve the MENA region (and the world when the time comes!). The three friends vowed that Zaka would help bring positive change to the region.

Chapter 4 — Building the Dream, One Block at a Time

With the spirit of each of the three friends, Zaka was built to educate individuals and organizations, help improve businesses and markets with smarter products and services, and connect individuals in one global community of AI talent.

One project at a time and one month after another, the small team grew to include more dreamers who were passionate about Zaka’s mission. From a single AI Bootcamp program, Zaka is now leading AI education in the MENA, partnering with global technology leaders, and fostering the largest AI community in the world — City AI!

Zaka has now hosted more than 10 educational tracks in the field of AI, educated more than 600+ individuals, and became a Global Training Partner of Microsoft.

With big dreams, the Zaka team now continues to push and work hard to bring more to its local and global communities!

Whether you’re an organization or an individual, here’s what Zaka can offer you!

Zaka is here to help you find your best AI fit whether you are a large organization or a single individual, and here is what we offer you today:

  1. Educational programs to help you gain skills in the fields of Data Science & AI. You can discover our existing programs or customize your own AI training experience.
  2. Consultation and development services to assist you in building the best AI roadmap for your products and services. If you’re looking for a quick way to get started, our AI Assessment Toolkit is the best place to start!
  3. Team augmentation to find the right fit of AI talent in organizations and teams. We are here to help companies outsource or hire AI talent or aid individuals to connect with and find the best AI career for them.

Find Your Place Today & Make an Impact with the Largest AI Community in the World!

Given our passion for community building, we are continuing to push the local Lebanese NGO, Beirut AI, and now extending our passion to drive the largest GLOBAL AI community — City AI!

You can become part of this effort today and put your city on the global AI map! Reach out to us today and make an impact!

Don’t forget to support with a clap!

You can join our efforts at Zaka and help democratize AI in your city! Reach out and let us know.

To discover Zaka, visit

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