Great ideas are great only when they are fueled by actions!
Infact if you asked the CollabDeen Team as to what we consider ‘greatness’ as, we would tell you this:
“Greatness comes by doing a few small and smart things each and every day. Comes from taking little steps, consistently. Comes from a making a few small chips against everything in your professional and personal life that is ordinary, so that a day eventually arrives when all that's left is The Extraordinary”
CollabDeen’s Co-Founder and CEO, Fateh Ali,is a resident of Singapore with a strong background in technology and business in the Islamic Digital Economy.
The story of his life - and inadvertabtly of CollabDeen itself - revolves around his endearingly intense passion for 2 things in life: Technology & Islam
This has set him off on a monumental entrepreneurial journey fueled by the power of spirituality and the excitement of technological development, to vigorously pursue the dream of introducing and equipping cutting edge technology to all Muslims - globally!
A technological breakthrough that enables Muslims to communicate, collaborate and connect with their local mosques and community centers / organizations -through a singular, centralized online digital platform in a mere matter of seconds!
A Story Built on Humanism
There’s a human element in the world of online entrepreneurship that is too easily overlooked.
At CollabDeen, we believe personal interaction is a crucial part of ensuring every single one of our app’s users is matched to the best and highest version of services we offer.
Our passion is ingrained in our visionary foresight of providing an all-encompassing spectrum of smart-mosque solutions and community growth that facilitate all areas of global Muslims and their religious, cultural, social and contemporary needs.
We possess a burning, never-ending desire to help all our users maximizetheir individual and collective community potential; exceeding their short or long term personal, religious and real-world everyday goals.
Though our vision is a bit aspirational, our values are what drive us every day.
Problems are the ingredients to solutions - without problems, solutions cannot exist.
The problem we noticed while coming up with CollabDeen, was that Muslims were severely lagging behind in technological connectivity online. Whether it be their religious, social, personal or contemporary realms of life, Muslims had no real all-in, one-stop and coherent global platform to exchange ideas, connect individually as people and grow collectively as a community.
Technology is what has determined the rise and fall of everything from economies and commerce, political influence and military strategy, to social and contemporary progress. The same goes for religious and spiritual connectivity and community building within the global Muslim populace.
Moreover, we recognize this problem of a technology gap between the upcoming generations of muslims and their mosques or communities.
Now. historically, Islam as a religion has, is, and will always be relevant until end of times. We know this from the Glorious Qur’an in Allah swt’s own verbatim words.
But Allah swt has throughout the history of mankind in general and Islam in particular, provided the tools, resources, means of knowledge and avenues of progress for us to benefit from. Whether that be during the Golden Age of Islam during the 12-15th centuries where Muslim inventors, scientists and philosophers played a monumental role in the development of the modern world, or the current times where Muslims are in a dire need of spiritual and technological rejuvenation - the adoption of new-age technology to drive Islam and it’s values is utmost crucial!
Islamic communities need to undergo a digital transformation and at CollabDeen we want to lead that for the global Muslim Ummah - one brick and one click at a time!
Given the problem and challenges we foresaw, our visionary solution was to merge the presentwith the future, enabling global Muslims to connect socially and spiritually to their mosques or community centres.
They would be able to do so while effectively harnessing the power of fluid communication and proactive collaboration in all spheres of their daily, academic, religious, personal and professional lives!
Our journey started in 2009 when our founders saw technology gadgets evolving at a fast and unprecedented pace. We noticed iPhone users in every household and by early 2012, Android Play Store was launched for the global masses.
Despite the technological improvement, the Muslim community had the least scope of tools being used.
“A lot of focus—whether in events, community gatherings, Religious learnings, Friday Prayers and in Ramadan—was made to subliminally emphasize the qualities being timely available in Masjid and Community centres while on the other hand technology wasn’t being used to make simplest of features like a reminder for a historical day” - Fateh , 2011
Fateh, with a technology background, created a small utility feature and had it shared to communities of 5000 people.
1200 members on iPhone and Android subscribed to the iCal service to receive weekly and monthly pop-notifications which functioned as a simple calendar event on their phone.
Feedback came the following year. People started asking – “Why am I not getting a notification from your utility feature?”
Fateh realized there was a strong demand for his utility service. This propelled him to continue working on this utility feature for few more years.
With a strong work ethic, Fateh has been working at least 90 hours per week from the start of his early career, while working in a 9-5 corporate environment.
He has simultaneously established his entrepreneurial vision through an inspiring journey that has resulted in him building products in hardware and software, while selling them globally.
The Evolutionary Path
Great leaders and visionaries are not born, they are created. The internal and external environment, social structure, education and other areas of development are what shapes an entrepreneur’s mind from an early age. It is what determines their ability to lead themselves to success, as well as their community.
And Fateh’s evolutionary path was no different!
His passion was boundless, visionary foresight endless and fiery drive unflinching! He quit his high paying corporate bank life and pursued the dream of bringing CollabDeen to life.
All through this, you would wonder what kept him going? His foremost motivation was simple! “To serve the global Muslim communities around the world by connecting them through the pages of spirituality, the pillars of mosques and the bricks of community centers - with technology and digital connectivity as the binding cement!”
Fateh strongly believes that the very purpose of life is defined by deeds that bring peace to the heart; deeds that are connected with Allah swt’s pleasure. Allah swt is the Sourceof all that exists in the universe. The Creator, the Evolver, The Shaper, The King of Kings! Hence, peace and happiness is directly connected to the Source, which is Allah swt!
Thus, Fateh utilizes his undying passion for technology for the benefit of millions - if not billions of fellow human beings by improving the core aspects of a thriving community through effective global communication, collaboration, connectivity and spiritual harmonization in unity.
Two Worlds Converge
Meanwhile on the other side of the world in the U.S, CollabDeen’s present-day Co-Founder and CTO Mohamed Hussain Manashia, a technology architect began experiencing how western islamic communities function and the need of technology to solve their pain points of collaboration.
Hussain with vast experiences working for renowned technology firms in several countries globally as a IT Architect, Product Manager, and a Consultant for SaaS startups all while being a geek at heart rolled up his sleeves and attempted to solve by leveraging technology solutions one community at a time.
When Hussain’s daughter was born in 2013, a major shift in his perspective towards using technology for Islamic community collaboration occured.
As a loving father he was worried about the negative consequences of social technology (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.) has on the teens today. He saw firsthand how islamic communities in Texas were helpless in retaining the interest of the children, youth, and young adults who were native users of digital technology.
The reality is that our children live today in a world turbo-charged with loud social media news feeds, Hollywood blockbusters, flashy music videos, inappropriately dressed celebrities and constant bombardment of negative imagery, sounds and narratives that go against the core principles of Islam.
Furthermore, the geopolitical and sociocultural negativity portrayed on news media against Islam and Muslims further attacks our children and their Muslim Identity.
Islamophobia is on the rise, Muslims the world over are looked at with an eye of suspicion , while our culture and heritage is viewed as ‘incompatible’ with the Western world.
Life is becoming harder for Muslims around the world, particularly those living in non-Muslim countries. There are bans being implemented by governments on everything from women’s hijabs to travel. The rights, freedoms and liberties of our children and future generations are gradually being taken away.
Our children are surrounded with non-Islamic emotional, mental and physical influences that pose tremendous risks to their overall development, confusing them and detaching them from the deen.
Our children have rights over us as parents, and one of those rights is providing them a healthy and meaningful life based on the strengths of security, quality, Islamic education and the right direction.
All this sparked in Hussain a strong interest to design, develop, and launch a global Islamic technology platform allowing all Communities and Muslim kids and adults alike, to leverage the very same set of communication and social technology to advance the tenets of Islam and to keep Islam relevant for the Millennial generation digital age.
He began working on a small scale model to showcase the potential of such an Islamic technology platform in India, which has one of the largest Muslim populations in the world.
Around the same time that Hussain was on the lookout for a way to take his idea forward and to a global audience, Fateh met Hussain in 2015.
Their first phone conversation, initially intended for 30 minutes, lasted for 1.5 hours. Their first discussion revolved on creating Internet of Things (IOT) strap products for the Hajj pilgrims, designing Smart Voice Recognition (SVR) home device with Azan clock and Quran reading feature and to creating a technology platform for Muslims to collaborate.
Fateh and Hussain have always been passionate about services to communities, and after brainstorming and sharing business vision and technology vision, the idea of CollabDeen was born in November 2016.
Islam and the Digital Age
Technology has changed the way Muslims practice religion. We now look to our smartphones as our reliable companion in our pursuit to be better Muslims. Smartphones help to remind us of prayer timings, find the Qibla direction when we travel and allow accessible reading of the Holy Quran.
Given the fast pace of life that we lead, most of the communication and collaboration tools have turned digital.
Common communication Apps we use to stay connected with our communities are WhatsApp, Telegram, Facebook, Emails, Text/SMS.
But is there a Global App or Platform that allows Muslim to transition from plain communication to collaboration within the Islamic community? And do much more like planning the next big Islamic event, collectively improving learning programs and digitally engaging the community members with Islamic content.
We all are ready for the upgrade to a smarter Islamic collaboration, but is there a technology product which allow us?
After years of experience in understanding how communities work, researches on almost every Muslim App available and spending an additional year in market analysis, the NEXT BILLION USER platform project was kickstarted.
Our dream is to see Muslims, the pioneers of many sciences in their early history, in the forefront once again as inventors and users of technology in service of humanity. Our vision is to offer to our brothers in faith, the best available technology out there, now and in the future, InshaAllah.
Aboo Hurayrah R.A quoted the Messenger of Allaah (sal Allaahu `alayhi wa sallam) as saying, "When a man dies, his acts come to an end, except in three cases: an ongoing charity, knowledge from which people continue to benefit, and a righteous child who prays for him." [Saheeh Muslim]
CollabDeen's founding team comprises of people from Technology evangelists to PhDs in Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, and award-winning designers, to seasoned professionals from Corporate Tech and Fintech space.
With a few patented inventions and three successful crowdfunding projects under founder's belt, for which we are blessed to be joined by a team of passionate professionals.
The Road Ahead
Our business roadmap is clear, defined and being actioned as you read this.
We are a small team with a big dream. Our team of experts from best in industry are passionately building this user-friendly app on a technology platform ready for global Ummah.
We will work with you at every step of your digital transformation. It’s about helping each other to attain Allah’s pleasure and eternal blessings by building for us and future generations.