We speak to Maktabti’s CTO about their goals and plans for 2019.
A few weeks before Cairo International Book Fair, that took place on January 23rd and ends on February 5th, a brand-new audiobook startup launches with a competition that invites people to record book excerpts in their own voice.
Maktabti is an app that provides a service of downloading and uploading audiobooks that aims to become the gateway for the Arab listener to access high quality content catering to all preferences as well as socio-economic and educational backgrounds.
“The main drive to this idea was our market research;” Maktabti’s CTO Emad Naguib tells Startup Scene. “There are more than 350 million Arabic speakers online, and they’re increasing day by day with Arabic content occupying less than 0.5 percent of the Internet.”
To change this, Naguib and Maktabti’s team has set off on a mission to exclusively produce at least 1,200 audiobooks in 2019. They started with 80 audiobooks and podcasts, and now they’re setting a goal to add 100 new audiobooks to the library every month.
Based out in Abu Dhabi, but put together by Egyptian founders, Maktabti is a subsidiary company to the conglomerate "O MENA Media" and therefore funded by multi-disciplinary business mogul Naguib Sawiris. The startup was founded in October 2017 and had its soft launch a year later in Sharjah’s book fair.
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