BEIRUT – July 27, 2017 – Endeavor selected 16 entrepreneurs leading 12 companies from 10 countries at the 73rd International Selection Panel (ISP) held July 24-26, in Beirut, Lebanon.
The selection panel also welcomed Ken Njoroge, the first Endeavor Entrepreneur from the newly launched Endeavor Kenya office, to the network.
Endeavor now supports 1,512 entrepreneurs leading 944 companies in 30 growth markets around the world. Panelists at the event, hosted by Endeavor Lebanon, included top business leaders and investors who were drawn from Endeavor’s extensive network of board members, mentors, and supporters.
The ISP is the culmination of a rigorous multi-step selection process to identify innovative and driven entrepreneurs who are committed to advancing an ecosystem of entrepreneurship.
“Endeavor is all about connecting global leaders and entrepreneurs to build a thriving network,” said Linda Rottenberg, Endeavor co-founder and CEO. “We’re thrilled to have hosted the ISP in Lebanon, which boasts an impressive entrepreneurial and innovative spirit, and we’re excited to welcome our first Endeavor Entrepreneur from Kenya! As Endeavor celebrates 20 years, it’s amazing to see the global entrepreneurship community we’ve built continue to expand to new frontiers.”
In Beirut, panelists from around the world interviewed entrepreneur candidates about their businesses, evaluating them on their potential for high-impact growth, and then deliberated on which candidates should be selected to become Endeavor Entrepreneurs. Once selected, Endeavor Entrepreneurs gain access to comprehensive customized services, including introductions to local and international business mentors and volunteers from Fortune 500 consulting firms who will help them address key needs.
Endeavor Entrepreneurs have had a significant track record of creating hundreds of thousands of jobs, generating billions of dollars in revenues, and building sustainable growth models in their home countries.
Endeavor will host the year’s upcoming ISPs in Brooklyn, New York City (September 11-13), Sofia, Bulgaria (October 23-25), and Miami (December 11-13).
Learn more about the companies and entrepreneurs selected below.
Entrepreneurs: Noha Khater & Rania Kadry
Description: Diabetes affects over 17% of the Egypt’s population. Amongst the many metabolic disorders caused by the chronic disease, diabetic retinopathy (DR) or loss of vision, affecting at least 40% of all diabetic patients, is the most prevalent and also the leading cause of blindness in the country. Egypt-based Al-Mouneer is the first to operate diabetic retina centers in the country with the goal to prevent vision-threatening DR and improve the quality of life for patients with diabetes. It is also one of the very first to take the digital healthcare leap in the country – going completely paperless and providing patients with tools to manage appointments and access their medical history online.
Entrepreneur: Gianna Tzika
Description:Greece is famous for the Aegean Sea. These waters not only attract millions of tourists every year, they are also the origins of some of the world’s finest fish. Remarkably, KONVA absorbs 40% of the Greek fishing industry’s annual catch of sardines and anchovies. Due to the temperatures and unique flora of the Aegean Sea, the Greek sardines and anchovies offered by TRATA are of exceptional taste and nutritional value. KONVA SA has successfully established its brands, TRATA and FLOKOS, in the Greek market. Having the richest line of fish products in the market, ranging from sardines, anchovies and tuna, to squid, herring, octopus and more, gives the company another unique advantage. Furthermore, since the early 1980s, KONVA has been producing a full range of tuna products, from tuna in water and olive oil, to tuna salads, both Mediterranean and Mexican. Its newest offering is its Smoked Tuna TRATA, which is the only tuna product smoked in a real wood-fired oven, using natural beechwood in a specialized, one-of-a-kind production unit.
Entrepreneur: Alex Maniatopoulos
Description: What isn’t connected to the Internet nowadays? Though more systems are coming online, implementing Internet of Things (IoT) projects is incredibly complex, time-intensive, and costly. Engineers write thousands of lines of code in order to connect expensive smart devices, manage system workflows, and measure results. Yodiwo offers an affordable, code-free IoT application enablement platform plus customized solutions to expedite the process of constructing IoT applications and interconnected networks. Yodiwo’s proprietary three-tiered platform–Wisper, Cyan, and Alcyone–saves clients 90% on application development time, 30% on system operating costs, and and 40-50% on capital expenditure.
Entrepreneur: Federico Sargenti
Description: Supermercato24 (S24) is an on-demand delivery service transforming the way people buy groceries and home essentials in Italy. Using their unique logistics algorithm, Supermercato24 connects customers with couriers who purchase and deliver groceries the same day — even within the hour. With Supermercato24, retailers can effortlessly add delivery services to their stores and provide customers with the highest levels of convenience and affordability.
Entrepreneur: Zeid Husban
Description: Traditional cash registers are a thing of the past. POSRocket modernizes this near-obsolete system by providing business owners with an intuitive, user-friendly, cloud-based point-of-sale (POS) platform. The customizable interface allows merchants to run smarter businesses by seamlessly monitoring and optimizing operations – from staffing to inventory regulation to sales reporting – in real time from any device. The much needed technology has seen significant traction in the MENA region, launching offices in both Jordan and Egypt. POSRocket successfully closed its Pre-Seed financing round in July 2017. The company is preparing to expand into new markets, aiming to capture MENA’s $950 million POS market.
Entrepreneur: Ken Njoroge
Description: In regions where financial inclusion is limited, mobile money promises a lower-cost, more scalable alternative to traditional banking. Cellulant is Africa’s leading payments ecosystem, connecting merchants, banks and mobile operators with their increasingly mobile customers through its electronic payments services. These services range from allowing consumers to receive and pay bills and enabling banks to make and receive payments, to government-to-person transfers. Consumers at the top and bottom of the pyramid can find all their bills in one place and pay using their preferred payment method. Cellulant is working its way to connecting African consumers with up to 7M businesses to claim a piece of a $20B payments market.
Entrepreneur: Mohamad El Yaman
Company: El Yaman Group
Description: Founded in 1987, El Yaman Group is a one-stop shop for complete package and label printing solutions, from design to post-press services. From humble beginnings, El Yaman Group has grown into one of the leading printing houses in Lebanon and the region by consistently adopting the latest technology to provide customized services at affordable prices, faster than the competition.
Entrepreneurs: Hamza Laraichi & Martin Tronquit
Description: Due to the complexity of the markets in the Middle East and Africa (MEA), there is a desert of reliable data on the region. Infomineo has set out to bring this region into the age of information by providing business and investment research focused on MEA countries. It does this by deploying the largest research team dedicated to the Middle East and Africa, including full time employees and 200+ freelance researchers on the ground spread across 26 countries. The field force team conducts interviews in 12 languages and many local dialects, distributes customer surveys and initiates home visits to create primary data. The Infomineo team maintains three databases, InfoMEA Execs, InfoMEA TopCo’s, and InfoMEA Markets, and utilizes three proprietary research tools, InfoMEA Press, InfoMEA Companies, InfoMEA Countries, which together aggregate 1,500+ sources. Part of the US$35 billion Knowledge Process Outsourcing (KPO) industry, Infomineo has won the business of Fortune 500 companies and top consulting firms.
Entrepreneurs: Mohammed AlAshmawi & Mohammed AlMadani
Description: Classera is Saudi Arabia’s leading e-learning platform that combines gamification and artificial intelligence to help schools digitize their education with a fun and competitive online learning environment. With more than 2 million page views and 320,000 questions answered daily, Classera was chosen by KSA’s Ministry of Education as the e-learning solution of choice to be implemented in all public schools. Schools license Classera’s platform to provide students with educational games that adapt in real time to their learning style. Accessed online or through the mobile app, the platform also integrates assessment tools, performance tracking systems, messaging and aspects of social networks, so that students can see how their progress compares to their peers. Classera users spend an average of 28 minutes on the site per day, which is higher than Facebook, Instagram and YouTube in KSA. Furthermore, Classera is the first school in Saudi with an education loyalty program that rewards students and teachers based on their performance through benefits and discounts at hotels, theme parks, sport clubs, restaurants, and local stores.
Entrepreneurs: Burak Hucuptan & Ruya Hucuptan
Company: Chef Seasons
Description: Chef Seasons creates gourmet seasonings, sauces and spices that enhance meals with flavor without smothering them in additives. Its wide variety of 2,000+ all-natural products—from salts to herbs to marinades—add instant flavor and nutrition through the infusion of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. The company is an exclusive global supplier to some to some of the world’s most recognizable fast food chains, such as Domino’s, Pizza Hut, Little Caesars, Burger King, Subway, Starbucks. To date, Chef Seasons’ award-winning products—also sold under its own retail brand—have also found their way into over 50 million households across 18 countries, proving their salt in the $13 billion global spice and seasonings market.
Entrepreneurs: Melis Güçtaş
Description: Modacruz’s user-friendly marketplace for pre-loved fashion items, accessible on web and mobile, provides a seamless experience for Turkish sellers and buyers. Users can sell clothes they no longer wear and buy brand name clothing at an affordable price. Modacruz offers additional features including a blog, advanced search and recommendation which lets buyers filter by brand and size, and a social component through follow and commenting mechanisms. The company also has an equivalent offering for baby products through its second hand marketplace, Bebecruz, where users can buy and sell used items such as clothing, toys, and strollers.
Entrepreneur: Adam McEwan
Company: Platinum Heritage
Description: Ironically enough, with 100+ tourism companies in Dubai, most all offer the same inauthentic, low quality experience filled with dune bashing (desert off-roading), subpar facilities, western food, and pan-Arab belly dancers. Platinum Heritage has brought tourism home, showcasing the true roots of Emirati and Bedouin cultures. By offering a truly authentic and premium experience in eight different languages, Platinum Heritage has differentiated itself from competitors, becoming TripAdvisor’s No.1 desert safari and securing its place in the $16.7B tourism industry in Dubai. In five years, the company has hosted hundreds of thousands guests and won four different awards.