Women entrepreneurs in MENA: Successes, challenges and policies

On January 16, 2013, Booz & Company’s Ideation Center hosted and event entitled ‘Women Entrepreneurs in MENA: Successes, Challenges and Policies’ in partnership with the University of Chicago Booth School of Business UAE Alumni Club. Attracting 170 delegates and media representatives coming from across the region, the event featured three panels revolving around the themes defining women entrepreneurship in the MENA region, including success stories, challenges, and policies. The event also saw participation from Booz & Company alumni, including Faysal Mokadem, Mohamad Mourad, Medea Nocentini, and Ibrahim Saad.

The event was kicked off with an opening keynote speech by Chadi Moujaes. Delegates then received valuable insights from experts on entrepreneurship in the MENA region such as Dr. Nasser Saidi, Former Chief Economist of DIFCA and Executive Director of Hawkamah Institute, Leila Hoteit, Principal at Booz & Company, and Nadereh Chamlou, Senior Advisor MENA at the World Bank. They were also part of lively discussions with members of the three panels who provided a more practical approach to the matter. Two of the panels were moderated by Booz & Company staff: Jihad Khalil and Hatem Samman. Given the salient topics discussed at the event, the media covered it extensively.

The conversation was also publicized, reported, and tracked on Twitter under the #WEMENA hash tag. Live tweeting helped to expand the impact of the discussion, ensuring that conference insights were relayed to a wider audience who was following remotely and posing questions to the panel. Moreover, physical attendees took part in the Twitter discussion on mobile devices as the #WEMENA discussion was brought to the event space through a projected screen, thus furthering the impact of the event and increasing attendees’ engagement. A total of 146 tweets were posted during the five-hour event by around 50 people. To get a glimpse of this engagement you can visit twubs.com/WEMENA or browse through the Twitter widget hosted on the Ideation Center website.

This active participation demonstrates the regional and global significance of the subject of women entrepreneurs. The event served as yet another testament of Booz & Company’s commitment to the Third Billion concept which illustrates women empowerment and quantifies the potential impact that this segment can have on the global economy, particularly in emerging markets.

In March 2014, Booz & Company joined the PwC global network of firms and is now known as Strategy&. All references to Booz & Company predate this change.