Entrepreneurship: some interesting experiences across the world/2

Mostafa Shahat has been working in entrepreneurship field for 7 years. He founded a training company called G.O.L (Goal Oriented Learners). G.O.L is improving Egyptian youth employment’s skills to be qualified candidates for the job market by offering trainings on entrepreneurship, professional trainings (marketing, sales..ect).Mostafa succeed to deliver G.O.L trainings to 30,000 entrepreneurs & graduates in Egypt.Mostafa interviewed over 80 entrepreneurs from all over the Middle East and published their success stories in international entrepreneurship magazines.Mostafa succeed to build partnerships with several European organizations to organize funded Entrepreneurship programs by National European Agencies in Italy, Bulgaria and Netherlands. Here he gives us a collection of some very interesting stories from international entreneurship.

Building a sustainable community by supporting women with micro-credits

Fida Abu Turkey is a Palestine woman, who succeed to support 100 underprivileged women to start their businesses when she was only 18 years old, and started three different organizations when she was studying arts at Al Quds Open University, she is considered one the most influential civil society activist in Palestine.

Fida grew up in Palestine particularly in Hebron city , since young age, she was volunteering in local organizations that support underprivileged women socially and economically. In 1999 when Fida joined the university, she has successfully run a fundraising campaign and gathered $100,000 to support underprivileged women in her city to start their businesses; 100 women received microcredits, Fida has started three organizations when she was studying in the university, Palestine Center for Communication & Development Strategies  (PCCDS) is a Palestinian non-profit NGO founded in Hebron in 2009 by Fida and a group of young female activists working in fields of development, democracy and human rights, in order to empower the most marginalized and disadvantaged families socially, politically and economically, and she also established Mobile Legal clinic for Human Rights and Rural Development Committees, and lately she has joined them with PCCDS.

In 2009; Fida started Irada for comprehensive development, one of the biggest sustainable organization in the entire Arab world that supports underprivileged women with micro-credits, training and marketing consultation to grow and scale their businesses, Irada supported more than 2500 women to receive funds between $1000 – $5000.As Fida is always active, she has joined more than 20 international conferences in Asia, Europe and Africa to represent Palestine entrepreneurs’ women. She was rewarded with the 1st place in King Abdullah II of Excellence and Youth Innovation Award in 2011, and 1st place in Prince Abdulaziz International Prize for Entrepreneurship in 2014, and Ashoka fellowship.Fida has a dream to support women not just in Palestine, but in the whole Arab world countries, she wants to implement Irada model in each of the Middle Eastern countries to help and support women to receive a fund and build their business. Fida believes that women in 21th century are playing a big role not just in the community’s sustainability but as well in the country economic stability.

Sustainable entrepreneurship Ecosystem in Jordan

Entrepreneurship flourished in MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region after the Arab spring in 2011, and with the support of the international donors, each of the Arabian countries succeed to build a sustainable entrepreneurship ecosystem which has a varieties of main actors; incubators, accelerators, venture capitals and angle investors who invested in social businesses or ventures which have potential to grow up and be sustainable organizations or companies.Jordan is one of the Arabian countries that succeed to create a sustainable entrepreneurship ecosystem before even the Arab spring, one of the most active entrepreneur and investor in the region his name is Saeed Omar a Jordanian who started the first accelerator in the MENA region in 2009, and have been running different successful businesses inside and outside Jordan.Saeed studied hospitality management in 1999 at Cyprus, he served for 9 years in multinational companies in different positions in many of the Gulf countries, but the company where he stayed longer was Media One as sales manager for 5 years in Dubai.Saeed went back to Jordan in 2009 to help founding the first accelerator in the middle east called Meydan (means in English square) with famous Jordanian social entrepreneur Maher Kaddoura, where they were supporting social ventures with an investment twenty thousands dollars each, and in return they have ten percentage equity of the company, Saeed was responsible for the selection process including receiving application and interviewing entrepreneurs. Saeed succeed in one year to recruit 19 social ventures from 500 who have applied, after the great success of the program in the first year, Saeed has decided to step down and work only as management consultant to Maydan and focus on his new venture.Saeed has founded in 2010 Sitat Byoot (which means in English women’s houses) is E-commerce website that helps women who are producing handmade products to sell it online, in less than 6 years, the website has 750 thousands women from 25 Arabian countries registered, with a revenue sales per month 10 – 15 thousands dollars, as well; they have conducted workshops to teach women who would like to learn how to make handmade products, around 100 workshops have been organized for 1000 women in Jordan, and they used to upload these workshops online so all the women in the region can learn how to make handmade products as well, almost 21 thousands women have access to the online uploaded recorded workshops.Parallel to running Sitat Byoot, Saeed has decided that his passion towards supporting entrepreneurs and creating sustainable entrepreneurship ecosystem is endless, that’s why he started in 2015 Startupnow which is a consulting company that helps organizations that support entrepreneurs, their services varies between marketing and management consultation, to training & development, within a year Startupnow has conducted 224 workshops that served 13 thousands entrepreneurs from all over the region.Two of the most incredible achievements that Saeed is proud of, first; he wrote a book named “Company Startup Program’ currently being taught at 20+ universities in Jordan, that helps wantrepreneurs how to start companies or organizations, providing practical solutions for all the marketing and management issues that usually face all the startups when they launch, second; Saeed for one year during 2014 has worked as a consultant for Doha Business Incubation Center (DBIC) which is considered as the biggest incubation center in the world that is built on 22 thousand meter squared, Saeed was supporting the center through the selection process, interviewing entrepreneurs as well giving marketing and managements advices.Saeed has been awarded with many international awards for his great contribution to create entrepreneurship ecosystem in the region and his successful sustainable businesses, one of the most prestigious award is Queen Rania Award for Entrepreneurship.



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