The story of Katalyst Labs - in the words of the Founder

It is often said that when you do something for a long period of time with smooth progress, churning out great results you tend to become too comfortable in your own skin. Then suddenly something shakes you up and you are forced to take a fresh look at what you are doing and how you are doing it. Is it scary? Yes, but sometimes it ends up working in your favour and for me it did. Here is the Katalyst Labs story.

My team and I had been working on startup incubation for 6+ years (I had actually been involved with the startup and tech ecosystem in one form or another for almost two decades). When I founded The Nest I/O it was because I felt a space like The Nest was needed for aspiring founders in Karachi. Interactions and discussions with many young people had resulted in several of us feeling that there was a gap that existed and we needed to fill it. Hence The Nest I/O was born.

During the period of six years, we graduated 217 startups and created a large community of over 1,000 founders. We also started an entrepreneurship innovation conference – 021Disrupt – which resulted in helping develop and enrich the startup ecosystem across Pakistan. Over a four year period we  brought many foreign entrepreneurs, speakers and investors in contact with energetic and talented young founders and local investors.

On May 1, 2021 I decided to part ways with the Pakistan Software Houses Association ([email protected]) after a 20 year period to focus on providing strategic support to the growing number of startups that have emerged over the past few years.

Katalyst Labs is a Startup Accelerator and Innovation Hub and has dual focus – to assist founders in scaling up their startup businesses; and to help more women to become business leaders. We endeavor to help both male and female founders to scale and achieve their true potential. Our Women Leaders Program aims to increase women leaders in the economy by honing their current skill set.

At Katalyst Labs we will also put our prior experience to work in creating startup events and conferences and will continue to work with corporates to help them innovate and transform.

We have wonderful and supportive partners who have enabled us to embark on this amazing new journey. Both our programs have started and the energy and passion is absolutely phenomenal. If the first few months is anything to go by, we are well on our way.

Thanks to our partners who helped
us start something special!

Primary Partner

Primary Partner

We are also a part of the global network

MS Startup

Our Fellowship is supported by

Fellowship Program
Co-Partner

Our support partners

Startup Partner

Startup Partner

Interested in partnering with us?
Get in touch at [email protected]

The bigger the dream, more important the team
Jehan Ara

Jehan Ara

Founder & CEO

Kashaf Jamal

Kashaf Jamal

Program Manager

Sobia Farooqui

Sobia Farooqui

Creative Strategy Lead

Ayesha Siddiqui

Ayesha Siddiqui

Marketing Manager

Ramsha Muzaffar

Ramsha Muzaffar

Digital Marketing Associate

Harris Qasim

Harris Qasim

Content Associate

Rubab Qaizilbash

Rubab Qaizilbash

Events & Partnerships Associate

Asghar Ali Qasim

Asghar Ali Qasim

Creative Associate

Maha Ahmed

Maha Ahmed

Program Associate

Ali Ukani

Ali Ukani

Finance & Operations Associate

Our advisors bring experience, expertise, energy and make Katalyst Labs what it is
Maheen Rahman

Maheen Rahman

CEO | InfraZamin Pakistan

Jawwad Ahmed Farid

Jawwad Ahmed Farid

CEO Alchemy Technologies

Fawzia Naqvi

Fawzia Naqvi

Independent Consultant

Faizan Siddiqui

Faizan Siddiqui

COO & Head of Digital Transformation at TCS Holdings

Raza Matin

Raza Matin

Founder and CEO | Brandverse

Ameena Saiyid

Ameena Saiyid

Managing Director | Lightstone Publishers

Sidra Iqbal

Sidra Iqbal

Award winning broadcast journalist

Sami Kizilbash

Sami Kizilbash

Global Head, Accelerators and Experts, Google

Our advisors bring experience, expertise, energy and make Katalyst Labs what it is
Dr. Ayesha Khanna

Dr. Ayesha Khanna

Co-Founder & CEO, Addo AI

Jawwad Ahmed Farid

Jawwad Ahmed Farid

CEO Alchemy Technologies

Fatima Asad-Said

Fatima Asad-Said

CEO Abacus Consulting

Yasser Bashir

Yasser Bashir

Co-Founder and CEO, Arbisoft

Sheba Najmi

Sheba Najmi

Founder & Executive Director, Tech for Change

Naz Khan

Naz Khan

Chief Strategy Officer, K-electric

Habibullah Khan

Habibullah Khan

Founder, Penumbra

Aatif Awan

Aatif Awan

Founder and Managing Partner, Indus Valley Capital

Sadia Dada

Sadia Dada

Chief Marketing and Communication Officer, K-electric

Muneeb Maayr

Muneeb Maayr

Founder, Bykea

Raza Matin

Raza Matin

Founder and CEO, Brandverse

Atif Azim

Atif Azim

Co-founder & Executive Board Member, VentureDive

Sana Farooq

Sana Farooq

Director, ELN the e-learning network

Abbas Shahid

Abbas Shahid

VP Growth | Bykea

Sahar Habib Ghazi

Sahar Habib Ghazi

South Asia editor, VICE World News

Munir Usman

Munir Usman

Founder and CEO, CodeInterview

Farrukh Omer

Farrukh Omer

COO, ValueLink Software

Myra Jehangir

Myra Jehangir

CEO, Conatural Beauty

Talha Izhar

Talha Izhar

Head of Web & Mobility, Hamad International Airport

Faiza Yousuf

Faiza Yousuf

Senior Product Manager, Genetech Solutions

Imran Moinuddin

Imran Moinuddin

Founder & CEO, NextDegree

Mustafa Baris Karaman

Mustafa Baris Karaman

VP Growth SWVL

Faraz Khan

Faraz Khan

Founder, SEED Ventures

Mubariz Siddiqui

Mubariz Siddiqui

Independent Legal Practitioner

Hira Saeed

Hira Saeed

Founder and CEO, CaterpillHERs

Nabeel Siddiqui

Nabeel Siddiqui

Co-Founder and CEO, ModulusTech

Muhammad Waqas

Muhammad Waqas

Co-founder & CEO, WonderTree

Saba Khalid

Saba Khalid

Founder, Aurat Raaj