14Oct

Insights on the Turkish startups ecosystem

During my attendance of Techstars Community Program Summit, Startup Weekend MENA, and Startup Istanbul I got the chance to witness what Turkey offers as an entrepreneurial ecosystem. Here are 7 interesting facts I have put together:

1) The excellent location of Turkey in the middle of  East and West, and the stability that the country has compared to its neighbors makes Turkey a platform for both regional and global startups.

2) Delivery Hero, Berlin Based food delivery has acquired Turkey’s Yemeksepeti for $589 million which considered to be the biggest exit in the Turkish ecosystem, and probably MENA.

3) Iyzico, a Turkish online payment system that raised the largest investment fund in the country in Series A and B, with more than $9 Million in total since it was founded in 2012.

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22Sep

Traditional Arab Collaborative Economy Initiatives That Still Exist!

The Collaborative Economy ideas are not new in the Arab World. Throughout history, people practiced sharing and collaboration in their day-to-day lifestyle as part of culture and religious beliefs. People shared food, products and homes among many other things. They also invented a number of traditional Collaborative/Sharing initiatives which are still being adopted today.

 

Jamee’h

An old model of a non-interest crowd-lending. Jamee’h means ‘commit’; small amounts of savings from a number of individuals that are put together and given to one person. The process is then repeated again, usually on a weekly or monthly basis with each member of the group benefiting from the collected amount.

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25Aug

Four Sharing Economy Initiatives Can Take Place in Developing Countries

There is a shy presence for the sharing economy in developing countries due to the trust issue between the strangers, as well as low market penetration of technology for both smartphone and online banking usage, which make it hard for companies like Airbnb or Uber to operate. So what another type of sharing economy initiatives that can overcome those challenges and take place in those countries.

Tool Library

At such facilities, books are replaced with tools in order to “mutualize” resources so that people don’t have to buy tools they would only use once in a while, such as saws, drills, or chisels. Each of these tools is available either for free or for a small fee, increasing the efficiency of each device and helping users save money

Tool libraries are also neighborhood hubs offering classes, community building spaces, workshops and a variety of instruments ranging from belt sanders to lawnmowers and more

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25Jun

Insights on The Iranian‬ ‪Startup‬ Ecosystem

Interesting facts I learned about the Iranian startup ecosystem: I’ve collected up some thoughts of this emerging ecosystem that I was able to explore.

1) It’s a startup clone market! Because of the sanctions Iranian entrepreneurs start setting up Iranian versions of the international successful startups like: YouTube (Aparat), Groupon (Takhfifan), eBay (Mozando), Amazon (Bamilo), and Uber (Taxi Yaab).

2) It worked: Digikala‬, is an online Iranian e-commerce site similar to Amazon, is estimated to be worth $150 Million which has around 750,000 unique visitors per day!

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22May

Jusoor Entrepreneurship Bootcamp – Beirut 2015

It a great opportunity today to help to coordinate Jusoor Entrepreneurship Bootcamp in Beirut, an initiative part of the organization Entrepreneurship program that aims to create a strong collaborative community to help Syrian entrepreneurs learn from successful businesses, peers and role models. The program addresses the challenges facing start-ups and helps guide entrepreneurs through their business development with mentorships, incubation program support, and funding.

During the Bootcamp, 10 Syrian startups from all around the MENA region joined three weeks of intensive sessions by Oasis500 trainers, designed to help aspiring entrepreneurs develop their ideas and startup experiences. The sessions covered topics that included starting a business, building a business model, conducting a financial study, performing a business valuation, and pitching.

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7Mar

Startup Communities: Building an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem in Syria

Today I organized Startup Communities event, a one-day event where Syrian entrepreneurs, social enterprises, and small businesses and organizations gathering to share ideas, and collaborate.

Over 30 Syrians organizations joined us in Startup Communities: Building an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem. Together, we discussed what we could each do to support entrepreneurship for Syrian.

This event was to bring together these entrepreneurs and the community to brainstorm ideas on creating a better environment for startups to grow and ultimately building an entrepreneurial ecosystem that meets the needs of entrepreneurs. 

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26Sep

Four issues the sharing economy could solve in the Arab world

The sharing economy may have led to several multi-billion-dollar successes like AirBnb and Kickstarter, and brought the community back into fashion in Europe, but it surely has its share of critics. Many today wonder whether the sharing economy makes sense for the Arab world, and if it can solve any of the region’s problems.

By now, a convincing argument has been made for the need to speed up the transition to a more collaborative region. But, if you remain skeptical, here are four ways the sharing economy could tackle some of the region’s, and the world’s, biggest challenges.

1. Poverty           

“Accelerating poverty reduction and sustaining human development improvement are significant challenges for the region in the future,” according to a recent World Bank report. In the Arab world, household consumption accounted for as much as 44% of the region’s economy, higher than China’s 35%, which indicates that as the middle class grows, consumers are buying more and more.

Sharing Solution: Sharing initiatives, like tool libraries, for example, can reduce costs for families by lowering the rates of household consumption. At such facilities, books are replaced with tools in order to “mutualize” resources so that people don’t have to buy tools they would only use once in a while, such as saws, drills, or chisels. Each of these tools is available either for free or for a small fee, increasing the efficiency of each device and helping users save money.

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