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Women entrepreneurs ‘creating excellence’

Dubai, January 21, 2013

Women entrepreneurs no longer fit the models society has assumed for them, but are forging their own paths and creating new standards of excellence, said an expert.

Dr Leila Hoteit, principal at Booz & Company, a global consulting firm, was speaking at the recent Chicago Booth UAE Alumni Club’s annual Middle East conference in Dubai, held in conjunction with the Ideation Center, Booz & Company's signature Middle East think tank.

With a staggering one billion women expected to enter the global economy in the coming decade, the conference ‒ entitled ‘Women Entrepreneurs in Mena: Successes, Challenges and Policies’ ‒ aimed to provide insight into this group’s potential and challenges in the region.

The event was attended by 170 delegates coming from the UAE and neighboring Mena countries.

Three different panels were organized to capture the different aspects of women entrepreneurship in the Mena region (challenges, success stories and policies).

Dr Nasser Saidi, former chief economist of the Dubai International Financial Center and executive director of Hawkamah Institute, highlighted the significant demographic shifts research has shown.

“The per capita talent pool of university graduates coming from developing countries now far exceeds that of developed nations and the responsibility for societies to fully leverage these critical assets,” he said.

Nadereh Chamlou, senior advisor office to the office of the chief economist for the Mena Region at the World Bank, challenged the conference attendees to strive for a time when we no do not have a distinct category for women entrepreneurs, but view them as entrepreneurs who happen to be women.

Mark Corusy, president of the Chicago Booth UAE Alumni, said: "The conference exceeded the Club's expectations in terms of participation by fellow alumni, business and community leaders, and most importantly the active engagement of the many entrepreneurs in attendance. The UAE Alumni Club is committed to leverage the momentum created by the conference in our immediate and longer-term efforts related to entrepreneurship and education."

Support

Jean-Paul Petoud, chief investment officer of Emirates Investment Bank, said:  “Emirates Investment Bank is proud to support the Women Entrepreneurs in Mena event.  We have been part of the financial fabric of Mena since 1976 and continue to grow, preserve and protect the wealth and businesses of our clients across the region.”

Other partners included Innu-Science, Dunia Finance, Microsoft, Khaleej Times, Wamda.com and The Intelligent SME magazine. – TradeArabia News Service




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