Previous Post
Visa Everywhere Initiative Announces Winners of Egypt Edition
Next Post
KSA Fintech HyperPay Raises $36.7M Round Led by Mastercard

Everything You Need to Know About the Debut Edition of EEA Talks

Set to debut as part of the road to the second edition of Egypt’s Entrepreneur Awards, the speakers and topics for EEA Talks have been announced and have thrown up some unique topics.

On June 10th, just one day before the grand ceremony, Egypt’s Entrepreneur Awards will host the debut edition of an event that is set to continue well beyond the initiative’s second edition. As part of EEA’s efforts to foster a closer-knit ecosystem and create a space where entrepreneurs, investors and other stakeholders can meet and engage, EEA Talks - also organised by the ievents team that brings you EEA itself - brings some of the most influential and successful figures from Egypt and beyond under one roof.

Taking place between 2PM and 7PM at Cairo’s St. Regis Hotel, the event looks to present a wide array of critical topics and will also feature a special exhibition centre for startups to showcase their innovations and solutions.

Shaping up to be an intimate and lively affair of fireside chats, talks and panel discussions, the first outing for the event is kicking off with a very special speaker…

Robin Sharma (@robinsharma)

Known best for his influential book ‘The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari’ (1997), Sharma has travelled the world, garnering a reputation as one of the world’s leading speakers. The writer has written no less than 13 books that cover leadership and self-improvement, with other highlight titles including ‘Who Will Cry When You Die: Life Lessons from the Monk Who Sold His Ferrari’ (1999), ‘The 5AM Club’ (2018), ‘The Leader Who Had No Title’ (2010), and - most recently - ‘The Everyday Hero Manifesto’ (2021), all international bestsellers that have sold millions of copies in over ninety-two languages, while his social media posts reach over six hundred million people a year.

An independent survey with 22,000 participants from the world of business placed Sharma as one of the top five leadership gurus in the world, and he’s shared various motivational speaking and self-help platforms with the likes of Richard Branson, Bill Clinton, Jack Welch and Shaquille O’Neal. 

Sharma has established himself as one of the world’s most respected experts on leadership and personal mastery. His clients include GE, Nike, FedEx, IBM, Starbucks and NASA. For over 25 years he has been helping leaders reach excellence and create superb results.

Omar El Sahy (GM, Amazon), Walid Hassouna (Founder & CEO, valU) & Youssef Salem (CFO, SWVL)

For many entrepreneurs and startups, the ‘exit’ is the ultimate goal, the most definitive measure of success. The larger significance of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) as well as exits, reflects Egypt’s deepening pool of innovation. In 2021, Egypt ranked second worldwide in the number of M&A deals, only behind the US. It has been reported that 233 deals took place in 2021, an increase of 49% from 2020, with the total value of the deals amounting to $9.9bn, an increase of 486%. When you take a closer look, these numbers reveal some interesting trends, with healthcare companies accounting for $1.6 billion of the total value of deals. Meanwhile, cross-border transactions accounted for the majority of the M&A deals, with domestic deals accounting for less than 20% of the total value. In this discussion Omar El Sahy Walid Hassouna and Youssef Salem will discuss a range of topics, including the key milestones towards global exits; the key stakeholders and consultants that can lead and facilitate international exists; the difference between full and partial exits, and how both can shape operations moving forward; and team compensation after an exit 

Omar Elsahy
(@oelsahy) is one of the leading experts in management, outsourcing, e-commerce business development and entrepreneurship. Prior to joining Amazon as General Manager, he held the same position at Souq. He has founded and managed multiple e-commerce business ventures including Odezy.com, a private online boutique shopping club, and Dealwaty.com, a high-end luxury daily deal website.

Walid Hassouna is the Chief Executive Officer of valU, as well as the Head of DCM and Chairman of PayTabs Egypt and EFG-EV Fintech. Over a 17-year banking career that began at Misr International Bank, he has closed structured and project finance transactions in excess of USD 15 billion and also executed several award-winning deals in project finance and M&A within Egypt and the GCC.

Youssef Salem
is the Chief Financial Officer of Swvl, a tech-enabled mass transit marketplace platform. Swvl is the first unicorn from the Middle East to be listed on Nasdaq and the first global transit platform to go public. He is one of the youngest CFOs at a Nasdaq-listed company. He previously served as an Executive Director at Moelis & Company and an Associate at QInvest.

Ayman Baky (Founder & CEO, Baky Hospitality) & Yasmine Yeya (Founder & Creative Director, Maison Yeya)

In our most contemporaneous understanding of the entrepreneurial ecosystem, we often equate it to tech solutions in all of its forms and applications - but what about the creative industries? What about food? Or even fashion? In Ayman Baky and Yasmine Yeya, we have representations of both. These are two individuals whose entrepreneurial drive and acumen have been just as responsible for their success in their fields. Success is the key word here, of course, and Baky and Yeya will dive into a range of topics while reflecting on their own journeys. 

They will touch on how and why they decided to start their businesses; how they see entrepreneurs in their respective industries have a true, tangible impact; the milestones and challenges that have defined their careers; the effect of new technologies on their fields; and how new talent and new entrepreneurs can enter those industries today.

Ayman Baky (@aymanbaky) is a restaurateur and founder of Baky Hospitality, which specialises in providing services in the hospitality industry and boasts a proven track record of managing some of the country’s most acclaimed restaurants, bars and clubs. Launched in 2013, Baky Hospitality Group has grown into a universal and multifaceted high-end luxury lifestyle brand of award-winning restaurants, catering services, and hotels. Among its venues are Sachi, Kazoku, Lexie's, Baky Hotels and Reif Kushiyaki.

Yasmine Yeya (@yasmine.yeya) is the founder and Creative Director of Maison Yeya, a French-Egyptian fashion house that offers couture, ready-to-wear, bridal, couture privée, and accessories. According to the company, its operations nearly doubled in 2021, and in the same year it expanded into the GCC, Mexico and Nigeria. The brand has dressed celebrities such as Jennifer Lopez, Nicole Scherzinger and Mona Zaki.

Fares Akkad (Regional Director, Meta MENA)

Like it or not, Web3 is coming - and it’s very much a case of get on board or get left behind. One of the most talked-about elements of the coming iteration of the world wide web is this nebulous concept of the metaverse - spaces that define and transcend life as we know it today, utilising tech to unlock opportunities that we still haven’t quite comprehended. This is the topic of discussion for a special talk with Regional Director of Meta MENA, Fares Akkad, a figure who sits front-and-centre of this digital revolution. 

With so many questions still hanging above Web3, NFTs, cryptocurrency and other related futuristic technologies, Akkad will discuss how Meta can reframe and reshape enterprises; its impact on human-based experiences; how Meta will align with the global sustainability movement; the different types of implementations around the world; and arguably the most critical point of all - the face-off between Meta and resistant businesses.

Fares Akkad (@akkad.fares)is the Regional Director for Meta, a role that sees him lead the commercial growth of the company and its portfolio across the region.  Akkad joined Meta in 2017 as head of media partnerships for Facebook and Instagram, Middle East, Africa and Turkey. Most recently, he was the director of media partnerships for news in growth markets at Meta, where his role was to support journalists and publishers.Prior to Meta, Akkad led digital business development and distribution for MBC Group. He is also an active advisor and investor in the startup scene.
For tickets, head to https://collardtickets.com/event/eea-talks/ and stay tuned to StartupScene, official media partner for the EEA talks.

Sign up for the daily Startup Digest.

Startup stories straight to your inbox

Sign up for the weekly newsletter