"You can listen to as many entrepreneurial stories as you’d like, but the ones that will really help you are those of failure not success"

Launched in 2017, KENO is a Dubai-born company that holds the distinction of introducing on-demand car wash service to the UAE market. KENO features a highly user-friendly mobile app which empowers car owners to summon car wash services to the location of their choice, therefore saving time and money while receiving a premium, eco-friendly wash and a host of automotive maintenance services.

Secret sauce

keno founder KENO’s Founder, Kenan Mobayyed, firmly believes in building a strong and trusted brand through quality -- quality that can be seen through their fast, reliable, and user-friendly mobile app,  the extensive and “ruthless” training of their car wash “Ninjas”, as well as their unique, region-specific dry wash technology for an eco-friendly wash. He envisions the startup becoming the most trusted automotive services platform in the MENA region.

Together with his Co-Founder, Rayyan Abu Hassan, they have grown KENO from providing 15 car washes per day, to an average of 100 orders per day; expanded their service to include tinting and special care and attracted around 13,000 customers. They have also increased their geographic scope to include Abu Dhabi, with plans of expansion to Kuwait and Saudi Arabia in the works.

Learning from failures and continue to execute

Getting KENO to where it is today did not happen overnight. Kenan is no stranger to venture building and the ups and downs that come with it, being an experienced entrepreneur himself. He cites that it is through the stories of failures, and not success, that one can learn most from. “Focus on these examples, study them and find out why they failed… and don’t ever get emotionally attached to an idea before you’ve done your research”

“Believing in yourself takes a ton of work, so start grinding”

What’s next?

With increasing demand in the market, the company recently raised funding from Dtec Ventures and Kuwait-based technology company, JustClean. With the funding, the company is working on covering the rest of the Emirates, and supporting their plans of expansion to Kuwait and Saudi Arabia

Why Dtec Ventures invested in KENO

We view KENO as a startup that is enabling a B2C traditional industry that has a high relevance in the region. It is one of two industries most frequently used by vehicle owners (the other being refuelling), and therefore has a solid demand from the market. Though they are not the only players in the region, their growth in terms of revenues since launch, and how demand outstrips their supply are positive indicators of the company’s potential.

At the end of the day, we firmly believe that the Founders are key to a company’s success. And we see a capable and resilient team in KENO’s Founders who previously worked together and have known each other for a long time. While Rayyan executes and supervises all ground operations, Kenan brings to the table his experience as an entrepreneur, a getting-things-done attitude, objectivity in reflecting on the situation and drawing the right conclusions and iterating. The Founders have shown grit as they overcame regulatory hurdles in the early months since launch, while consistently growing their revenues. They are methodical in planning and strategizing how to scale a business such as theirs, and we’re excited to see them become the most trusted automotive services brand in the region.