Beirut based startup NAR acquired by US-based B3Bar
BEIRUT: NAR Technologies, a Beirut-based startup that develops smart drone-based solutions by integrating with drones and analyzing and processing data on the fly at a fraction of the time and cost compared to traditional methods, has been acquired by US-Texas-based B3Bar Holdings.
Speed Accelerator and Leap Ventures decided to seed NAR in 2015 enabling it to develop its cutting-edge UAV/drone inspection through AI software. Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) or Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) analytics for infrastructure, inspection, and surveillance is a fast-growing field, and NAR allows for swift real-time data analysis and management.
“This is a successful 331-story that speaks to the merits of encouraging and investing in Lebanon’s Knowledge Economy and the Lebanese talent,” says Hervé Cuviliez, managing partner at Leap.
Founded by two LAU graduates Charlie El Khoury and Nicolas Zaatar, NAR identified the opportunity in dramatically improving the labor-intense and time-consuming process of data analysis and reporting performed following each inspection flight by the drone pilots. NAR’s AI-powered software enables quick and lives human input into automated drone inspections, which allows for faster and more accurate output.
NAR was selected into Speed after winning Microsoft’s Imagine Cup, joining the accelerator’s first cycle in 2015. Speed provided an initial investment of $30K in cash and a 3-month program that concluded in sending both founders to the LebNet Ignite immersion program in Silicon Valley. Speed CEO Sami Abou Saab commented, “Charlie and Nicolas seemed very eager from the beginning to make it big, and they leveraged every Speed mentor they could find. You cannot but appreciate their persistence. They are a prime example of Lebanese talent developing innovative technologies to create value that serves global markets.”
NAR complements B3Bar’s offer and integrates well with its platform serving B3Bar’s wide portfolio range of infrastructure & utilities-focused technology companies.
“NAR’s value starts at the edge,” says Mothusi Pahl, CCO at B3Bar. “With NAR, drone pilots can manage and work with data in real-time and literally on the fly. At B3Bar, our clients are ‘boots-on-the-ground’ engineers, inspectors, and contractors. As we continue our expansion in infrastructure and utilities, NAR brings proven tools that immediately reduce OPEX and help our clients deliver faster.
Welcome to Annahar's "Startup City," a column designed to cover the hundreds of early-stage businesses in Beirut, and what they represent as to the talent and optimistic business plans of local young tech workers. Send your nominations to: [email protected]