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From The Art of Deals, To The Science of Customer Loyalty: 10 Workshops To Look Out For at RiseUp 18

From legal landscaping and international fundraising, to using chatbots to boost customer loyalty, it looks like there’s something for everyone at #RiseUp18

This year at the sixth edition of the Middle East's biggest entrepreneurial summit, RiseUp, there are a whopping 80 workshops across the three main tracks: Capital, Creative, and Tech. Workshops at RiseUp are split into 101s, which don’t require prior knowledge about the topic at hand, as opposed to the more advanced and selective deep-dives, which would expect applicants to be at a specific level of technical background.  

To enroll in a workshop at RiseUp, you need to apply between midnight on Friday November 30th and midnight on Sunday December 2nd. Applicants will hear back before the summit on what they got accepted into, whether that’s a 101 or a deep dive.

So, here’s a breakdown of ten workshops ranging from how to untangle legal work to coding for non-techies. For tech deep-divers, there are several workshops up RiseUp’s sleeves, literally performing an autopsy on UX and AI.

'Commercialising Your Thesis' with Omar Sakr (Nawah-Scientific)

In Egypt, the scientific community consists of a lot of bright minded scientists with innovations locked in their drawers. This untapped potential is held captive by the lack of proper information and training for scientists on how to take their case studies and inventions to the real world - the market.

Aiming to tackle just that, this deep-dive workshop is tailored for participants with scientific backgrounds, ideally staff of faculties of pharmacy, sciences, agriculture, or medical schools. During the workshop, participants will walk along the path to answer three questions: which research finding can become a business idea? What are the different business models of biotech startups and how to get funded?

The workshop will be delivered by Omar Sakr, the founder and CEO of Nawah-Scientific, the first private multidisciplinary research centre in Egypt, which caters for research in the fields of natural and biomedical sciences. Working between Egypt, Switzerland, and Egypt, Sakr’s career spans over 13 years in the pharmaceutical field, both in academia and industry.

His research is focused on nanotech applications for controlled delivery of small molecules and biological drugs. Sakr holds several scientific and business awards for innovative product design, he has authored and co-authored several peer-reviewed articles and book chapters that are published in top journals in the field.

'Tech for Non-Techies' with Eman El-Koshairy (Al-Makinah)

Nobody enjoys being underestimated due to their lack of technical knowledge; especially business owners leading an IT team or even outsourcing them. This year,  Al-Makinah, a Cairo-based coding school, is giving a 101 workshop that promises to educate non-techies on how to surveil the web development cycle process with a tech team. Co-founder, Eman El-Koshairy, will take on several fronts; communication; terms and concepts a business owner needs know for a more effective communication; decision making; how to mark your priorities for a better roadmap; evaluation; and how can you test, monitor, and evaluate deliverables from your team.

Together with El-Koshairy, participants will cover tools, jargon, and answers to common questions about computer science.

After working in computer science at corporates, startups, and as a university teaching assistant, El-Koshairy noticed a paradigm shift in how junior employees - her students - digested new information depending on the way it was provided. With extensive experience in UX research, tech content, and web development under her belt, El-Koshairy’s motive for building Al-Makinah with her co-founder Bahia El-Sharkawy is anchored by envisioning a much richer educational experience in the region.  

'UX Autopsy' with Waleed Fahmy (Webkeyz)

This one is for those who are fond of the finest details. An autopsy of user experience will take place at RiseUp’s 'Grounded Experiences' this year. This deep-dive workshop is tailored for those interested in the intricacies of user experience and user interface design.

The instructor behind this workshop is Waleed Fahmy, CEO and Head of Design of Webkeyz, a product and UX firm. He will perform a detailed evaluation of SoundCloud according to Nielsen Norman Group’s ten usability heuristics. The product will be dissected and analysed against specific criteria; highlighting points of strength and weakness, as well as opportunities for improvement. Later in the workshop, the audience will get to vote for a product of their choice for autopsy.

Calling himself a UX evangelist, Fahmy was the second designer in Egypt to become an Adobe Certified Expert. Fahmy was hired by renowned clients such as Coca-Cola, The British Council, P&G, and Crédit Agricole. During the last few years of his employment, Waleed focused his attention on user experience design (UX) and information architecture (IA), whereby he introduced UX culture to two of the companies he worked at. Out of his belief in the importance, value, and impact of UX design in the software industry, Waleed launched his own company, Webkeyz, in 2009. Focusing solely on UX and digital product design,

Webkeyz has a vision to help businesses deliver products that people love to use. In April 2016, Waleed became the first Google Design Expert in the Middle East. He’s also a Design Sprint Master and has been asked to conduct design sprints across different countries such as Tunisia, Saudi Arabia, and Lebanon. Waleed has also given UX-related talks at several events, and is currently hosting the first Facebook Live product design event, titled ‘Design Night Live’. Living between Cairo and Silicon Valley, Fahmy is on a mission to raise awareness about the importance of UX across the software industry.

'Chatbots and Customer Loyalty' with Saif Ahmed (WideBot)

One of the biggest challenges that face brands today is building and maintaining personalised customer relationships. It’s an ongoing process that requires a lot of resources and effort, both of which are scarce because it requires skilled staff and skilled staff needs a generous budget. And due to the financial crisis that has been spiralling globally since 2007, this budget is not always very generous, which subsequently puts the skilled staff at risk. Saif Ahmed from WideBot, the region’s first bot-startup, wants to explore how AI can get the job done with a fraction of this budget.

In this deep-dive workshop, Ahmed has a mission to prove that chatbots are the right solution to this problem through conversational UX, while using them as omni-channels for businesses.

While he’s the CPO of WideBot, Ahmed is also the founder of the largest chatbot worldwide, Azkarbot. Being a big believer in the AI spectrum, he works with a lot of bot makers and CEOs, executives and solopreneurs to build their own chatbots.

'Meet Me Where Strategy and Creativity Intersect' with Mohamed ElDib (Monkeys in Tuxedos)

There's a sweet spot that I've noticed in the 150-plus clients we've worked with at Monkeys in Tuxedo, that few brands around here are able to achieve,” says Mohamed ElDib, Managing Partner of Monkeys in Tuxedos, a marketing agency. “People either want something that is super strategic and boring, or very creative but does not serve their brand at all.”

These clients often think about this as an either/or situation, but ElDib begs to differ. “There's a third option, which is the intersection between strategy and creativity. All businesses of all sizes need to find this sweet spot and capitalise on it in order to roll the ball fast.”

In this 101 workshop, El-Dib will be exploring with his participants how to find this sweet spot and what to ask while trying to find this sweet spot for a particular business. He'll be showcasing some case studies of successful and unsuccessful campaigns he’s dealt with throughout his time in the market.

El Dib describes himself as a “multi-dimensional” individual. His experiences are wide and varied, and he loves creating concepts that are unheard of. If you have an idea that you’re very excited about and can’t keep for yourself; then El-Dib is your man.

'The Fundamentals of International Fundraising' with Ahmed El-Attar (Orient Productions)

Raising funds is something, and raising funds in hard currency - at global rates - is a whole different story. Many accelerators admit that the Middle East is nowhere near Silicon Valley in terms of startup funding. Ecosystems are slowly recovering from post-revolutionary and post-war economies, so accelerators often advise their startups to capitalise on their business models in parallel to creating their products.

Aiming to develop a cohort of professional fundraisers, Orient Productions' very own Ahmed El-Attar will be giving a workshop laying out the 'Fundamentals of Fundraising'; putting the fun into fundraising by demystifying the main concepts and tools for developing a sustainable and diversified fundraising strategy. Powered by Tamasi Collective for Performing Arts, this deep-dive workshop is aimed at mid-level fundraisers who would like to develop their fundraising skills and take them to the next level. The workshop covers all the major sources for raising funds including, trusts and foundations, corporates and individual giving.

El Attar been named a 'Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters' by the French Ministry of Culture for his significant contribution to the field of theatre. He is an Egyptian independent theatre director, translator, playwright, as well as the founder and general manager of Studio Emad Eddin Foundation, a unique project that offers rehearsals and training spaces to independent performing artists in Egypt. Through Orient Productions, he was able to produce mega-projects such as the annual Downtown Contemporary Arts Festival (D-CAF). 

Tamasi Collective was established in 2008 to enhance its capacity to resist marginalisation of the arts; break the isolation of artists in the Arab countries and maximise the resources available for the performing arts sector to enable it to grow in a vital, sustainable and viable way. Consisting of 11 performing arts organisations from Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon and Palestine accomplished in the field of performing arts that share a deep belief in the pivotal role of culture and art in achieving social justice.

'Legal Landscaping' with Amr Hareedy (The Legal Clinic)

One of the pet peeves of building a startup is taking care of the legalities and paperwork. The Legal Clinic, an entrepreneurial legal firm, has taken it upon itself to break down and dismantle all the worries revolving around this ordeal.

In his 101 workshop, The Legal Clinic's Associate Amr Hareedy, will illustrate the legal landscape in Egypt tackling the most common legal issues facing startups and SMEs, such as how to start your company,  how to manage your company legally without any complexities, which company type is better for your business, and what are the liabilities.

Hareedy is a qualified lawyer and a member of the Egyptian Bar Association. He specialises in corporate and commercial law, where he deals with all cases at the General Authority for Investment and Free Zones, the Egyptian Financial Supervisory Authority, and advises clients on numerous cases of corporate matters in different industries, with his expertise lying in contract drafting, company procedures, corporate structuring, and shareholder agreements.

'The Art of Making Deals' with Mohamed Nagaty (Halan)

It’s okay to lack a bit on sealing deals; not everyone is born a shark. But what is not okay is launching a startup without learning to at least try to become a shark. In this 101 workshop, Mohamed Nagaty, the co-founder of Halan, a ride-hailing app for tuktuks, will teach his fellow entrepreneurs some of his magic, and sometimes artistic, tricks in sealing deals. The workshop will teach tech startups how to use deals and partnerships as a fuel for growth, by covering a set of examples in the region's largest startups and how partnerships helped them reach new heights and be pioneers in different fields.

Nagaty is originally an engineer with a rich and diverse experience in business development across four industries; financial services, food and beverage, transportation, and energy. He used to be the Regional Director of Careem and is a current shareholder in Fawry.

'Why is Content Marketing Important?' with Nour Al Hassan (Tarjama)

Website conversion rate is nearly six times higher for content marketing adopters than non-adopters. In her 101 workshop, Nour Al Hassan from Tarjama will be discussing how great content helps influence conversions, and how optimising content helps improve SEO efforts. “Creating great content is a cost-effective way to bring in new leads,” says Al Hassan. “Content marketing is not only great for lead generation, but it’s also affordable.”

If you want to build relationships with customers and publish great content, this workshop promises to enable you to do both.

Content marketing plays a role during each stage of the funnel. Together with her participants, Al Hassan will go through the three major areas of an entrepreneur’s marketing funnel that one needs to think about while they’re developing digital marketing campaigns.

Building on the success of Tarjama, which she founded in 2008, Al Hassan realised there was demand to leverage the power of the internet to connect businesses and freelancers across the region through a digital marketplace called Ureed.

'HR for Entrepreneurs' with Aya Waheed (Wuzzuf)

In the beginning, the CEO and founders play the role of the HR personnel; pushing out calls for recruitment, screening CVs, shortlisting, hiring, and sometimes firing. So what are the do’s and don’ts in this field? The HR gurus at Wuzzuf have curated a syllabus that will be presented by Aya Waheed, Head of People and Culture, who will be exploring how the HR hemisphere evolves at startups from 10 to 100 team members.

In this 101 workshop, Waheed will help CEOs, founders, and entrepreneurs calculate when the ideal time is to have someone dedicated for HR management. She will go through the functions and entitlements of the HR body and the reasons all this hassle is required to build a more organised business. Moreover, she will give pointers to CEOs and founders to help them spot the top performers.

Waheed is the head of people and culture at BasharSoft, the company behind WUZZUF and Forasna, Egypt's leading platforms for recruitment of both white-collar and blue-collar candidates. She played different roles in sales, operations, quality, and administration. In 2015, she moved to HR, back when the company was only 30 team members until today with 250+ team members.

During this period, she focused on culture, employee satisfaction, and building one of Egypt's most positive and enjoyable working environments.

The workshops schedule is live as of Friday, November 30th midnight on this link.

Applications will close on Sunday, December 2nd midnight. 


Disclaimer: This list is susceptible to change upon confirmation of new instructors, or the cancellation of old ones.


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Date: 9/26/2020
Time: 12:00pm - 1:00pm
Venue: Online