startAD and VentureSouq Announce the 8th Annual Angel Rising Investor Education Symposium on ClimateTech at COP28

The partnership upskills GCC investors with the skills, tools, networks, and exposure to invest in Climate Tech startups

startAD, the Abu Dhabi-based startup accelerator powered by Tamkeen and anchored at NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD), and VentureSouq, a MENA-based venture capital firm, have announced the 8th annual Angel Rising Investor Education Symposium, scheduled to take place from December 5 to 7 at COP28 under the theme, ClimateTech for Change. 

This year, Angel Rising has been organized in partnership with both The US Mission to the UAE and The Catalyst, 'a joint venture between Masdar City and BP to support and invest in clean-tech start-ups that are creating and scaling solutions to climate change'. Aligned with COP28 and UAE’s ambitions to achieve net-zero carbon emission by 2050, Angel Rising will offer investor-focused education sessions on the ClimateTech space through three programs:

  1. Angel Rising Roundtable with UICCA: Wednesday, December 6, 2023, 2:30-4 p.m. at the UAE Independent Climate Change Accelerators Pavilion at the COP28 Green Zone. The discussion will explore how the UAE can build a climate-resilient economy and the role ClimateTech startups can play. It will feature local case studies with innovators showcasing how their cutting-edge technologies address pressing climate issues. 

  2. Angel Rising Roundtable with the US Mission to the UAE: During COP28, the U.S. Mission to the UAE will also work with startAD and VentureSouq to convene a high-level discussion at the COP28 Blue Zone focused on the ClimateTech space, uncovering trends and priorities of channeling investments into early-stage ClimateTechs.

Angel Rising Symposium: Thursday, Dec 7, 2023, 2-5 pm, at the Climate Action Innovation Zone, Madinat Jumeirah Conference Centre, Dubai, UAE. The conference will spotlight world-class global and local experts in their fields who will delve into ‘ClimateTech for Change’, highlighting the need to act fast and catalyze technology adoption through startups to serve the 2050 vision and address global warming. Programming will include spotlight sessions, panel discussions, and fireside chats, followed by networking.


“An annual collaboration between startAD and VentureSouq, Angel Rising has seen tremendous traction in voicing change through impact and conscious investments. This year, with COP28 being held in the UAE, it marks a pivotal moment in our global commitment to combat climate change. Investing in ClimateTech startups is not just a financial opportunity; it's an investment in our shared future and a crucial step in combating climate change, as these ventures often bring disruptive and transformative technologies to market, making it possible to reduce carbon emissions and adapt to a changing climate. According to a report by the International Renewable Energy Agency, global investments in energy transition technology must quadruple to $35 trillion by 2030 to stay in line with commitments made under the Paris climate agreement. We believe in these innovators as they hold the keys to a sustainable world, unlocking solutions to the pressing challenges of climate change. Supporting them is a moral imperative, ensuring that our planet and our prosperity thrive in harmony for generations to come."

Managing Director of startAD Ramesh Jagannathan

“Angel Rising has a track-record of attracting investment to help tackle serious global challenges through entrepreneurship. This year is no exception and, as the UAE hosts COP28, Angel Rising will address the role ClimateTech startups can play in developing cutting-edge solutions to promote both sustainability and economic growth.”

CEO of Tamkeen John Tate

Co-Founder and General Partner at VentureSouq Sonia Weymuller continued: “We look forward to this continued partnership with startAD via our Angel Rising symposium held this year at COP28. This annual event has been instrumental in providing access to top-tier experts regarding emerging technology trends over the last seven years. We’re thrilled to organize programming this year around one of our core theses at VentureSouq: ClimateTech.”

“Climate change presents both an existential risk and an economic opportunity, and technology acts as the enabler for this climate transition. The next decade presents an unparalleled opportunity to back the next wave of disruptive ClimateTech companies that are building upon their predecessors and developing innovative technology stacks across sectors. The country’s leadership and mindset for innovation makes the UAE an ideal hub to support and pilot ClimateTech solutions,” Weymuller added.

Counselor for Public Affairs and Outreach at the U.S. Embassy Robin Solomon commented: “At the U.S. Mission to the United Arab Emirates, we are honored to shine a light on the critical need for regional investment in “ClimateTech for Change” during COP 28 in partnership with NYUAD, startAD, Tamkeen, and VentureSouq.”

“In advance of COP28, President Biden convened the Major Economies Forum (MEF) to galvanize financing needed to tackle the climate crisis. The United States will provide an additional $1 billion to the Green Climate Fund, bringing the U.S. total contribution to $2 billion. We are proud to stand with our Emirati partners to promote sustainable development and climate action.  We hope this initiative will inspire more regional investments in transformative technologies to meet our shared net zero ambitions and showcase the very best of the U.S.-UAE partnership,” Solomon continued.

Angel Rising is targeted towards GCC-based family office funds, venture capitalists, angel investors, institutional investors, corporate and government investors, and stakeholders who are interested in investing in impact-driven technology startups that can bring positive change in the future of climate and the economy. Over seven years, Angel Rising has convened 100 global experts, 2900 participants, and reached 11 million people worldwide. Ecosystem partners for this edition include The UAE Independent Climate Change Accelerators and the European Women’s Association. 

For more information, please visit

This Symposium is being held as NYU Abu Dhabi is chairing the Universities Climate Network (UCN). Comprising 32 UAE-based institutions of higher education, the UCN collaborates to facilitate dialogues, workshops, public events, policy briefs, and youth participation in the months to and beyond COP28.