High-Impact Entrepreneurship

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Mexico’s Ver De Verdad Launches First Mobile Eyecare Network in Mexico

Ver de Vverdeverdaderdad, founded by Endeavor Entrepreneur Hugo Moreno González, is a retailer of  affordable, high- quality and stylish eyeglasses and accessories primarily serving low-income Mexican consumers. The retailer recently announced that it is introducing its first mobile optical shop, which will serve populations in rural communities that lack traditional access to eyecare.

The company aims to bridge the gap between high-priced eyewear and the inadequate eyeglass options supplied to the nation’s poor by public health groups. By providing a full vision diagnostic service at an affordable price, Ver de Verdad allows customers free eye exams that they might not have regular access to. The customer’s unique specifications are then designed and produced by one of the company’s production centers and delivered. The company currently operates over a dozen retail stores, and the mobile unit initiative will allow them to reach areas like Sonora and Sinaloa where they do not have traditional outlets. The first mobile shop will serve an estimated 22,000 people a year.

An estimated 3 out of 10 Mexicans have the opportunity to improve their quality of life with the help of glasses, but the vast majority lack this awareness because they don’t have access to to reliable eyecare services. In the communities of Sonora and Sinaloa especially, over 2 million don’t have steady access to these essential services. The mobile units will provide the same services as their fixed locations and are also equipped with production facilities. The effort was made possible with support from the Inter-American Development Bank.

Since joining the network in 2012, Hugo and his team have received support from a local panel of mentors who provided them with a roadmap to refine and fine-tune their business model. See more about the launch by clicking here.

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Ver De Verdad’s mobile unit

Colombia’s Bodytech Named EY Entrepreneur of the Year in Colombia

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Nicolas Loaiza Galeano and Gigliola Aycardi Batista, Colombian entrepreneurs and founders of Bodytech, were recently named EY Entrepreneurs of the Year in Colombia, recognizing the company’s innovative business model and impact on the region’s economy. The chain of health and fitness centers has grown to include locations in Chile and Peru and currently employs over 3,500 people.

 

Based in Bogotá, Bodytech  recently announced plans for expansion in five Latin American countries as the business prepares to become a publicly listed company. By integrating health and fitness services, BodyTech is more than just a gym – the health club has grown to offer multiple solutions in the medical arena as well. After realizing the potential in Latin America’s health sector to create a tailored chain of clubs, the pair took a risk on the idea and turned their graduate school thesis into Bodytech.
 
Now with 58 Colombian locations spanning major metropolitan areas including Bogota, Medellin and Cartagena, Bodytech also maintains 39 locations in Chile and 10 in Peru and is looking to enter Ecuador, Costa Rica and Panama by 2015. Projecting to grow to over 200,000 members and 150 fitness centers in the next few years, the company has also set its sights on revenue goals of $150 million as it builds upon its membership.

 

EY, an Endeavor global partner, has been hosting the EoY Program for over two decades, expanding it to more than 50 countries with awards presented annually to over 900 of the world’s most successful and innovative entrepreneurs.

With access to the right resources, Nicolas and Gigliola are a testament to the high-impact potential of emerging market entrepreneurs and have been active members of the Endeavor network since their selection in 2007. The team has received expert advice and support from Endeavor’s eMBA, G-Lab and ECLA programs, with specific guidance given on the strategic planning and execution of the brand’s fitness training institutions.

Read more about Bodytech’s EY honor in El Tiempo.

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Gigliola and Nicolas at the EY EoY Awards event

Lebanon’s Hind Hobeika, Founder of Instabeat, Honored on BBC’s 100 Women 2014 List

_78541700_100_women_branding_2014Lebanon entrepreneur Hind Hobeika, founder of wearable tech company Instabeat, was named to BBC’s 100 Women list this year which recognizes women who are leading industries and igniting change around the world. Instabeat produces a unique device that allows swimmers to monitor their heart rate and other metrics through a real-time display.

Instabeat’s wearable gadget provides on-demand data for swimmers on a color coded screen on the interior of swimming goggles. The device is small, creates minimal friction with water, and provides key information without having the swimmer lose focus. Hind expects that the technology could be applicable to sports and athletes beyond the swimming world and plans to launch a triathlon version to market in the next few years. Estimated to reach $50 billion by 2018, the global wearable tech industry has gained popularity in recent years with top names like Google and Apple making forays into the field. Hind and her team are already beginning to find a niche in the market and are inspiring other entrepreneurs in the region to do the same.

After joining Endeavor at the 54th ISP in 2014, Hind has been set up with a local board of advisors and industry experts who will help her refine Instabeat’s products and business model.

View the full BBC list by clicking here.

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Hind Hobeika presenting at the INK2014 Conference

Mexico’s Jorge Soto Discusses the Future of Cancer Detection in TED Global 2014 Talk

miroculus_webMexican entrepreneur Jorge Soto, co-founder of Citivox and Miroculus, gave a talk at TED Global 2014 this month about the future of medical technology and cancer detection. Miroculus, his second venture, aims to disrupt the medical device industry with a unique testing product that can detect and monitor diseases while providing real-time analytics.

Along with a crew of technologists and scientists, Jorge – who serves as the company’s CTO – saw an opportunity to develop a simple, noninvasive, open-source test that looks for early signs of multiple forms of cancer. Onstage at TED Global 2014, he demonstrated a working prototype of the mobile platform for the first time. Drawing on personal experience with cancer in his family, and frustrated with the inefficiencies of diagnosis in the medical system, he and his team knew that they could find a reliable and accurate way to leverage blood samples and molecular analysis for detection. Demonstrating the potential for innovation in emerging markets – the founding team hails from Chile, Panama, Mexico, Israel and Greece – Mirocolus taps into a global need for accessible medical technology.

Selected in 2011 along with Citivox co-founder Oscar Salazar, the pair’s original venture used mobile and crowd-sourcing technology to build and enhance the relationship between citizens and the government. With Citivox, Endeavor helped the team connect with industry experts and key investors through the Endeavor Investor Network. Jorge, who has also given back to Endeavor through donations, continues to receive support from the organization as Miroculus works to scale its offering.

Watch Jorge’s TED Talk below.

Argentina’s Satellogic Featured at Wired UK Conference; Highlights the Potential of the Space Industry

satellogicArgentina’s Emiliano Kargieman, an Endeavor Entrepreneur selected at the 54th Endeavor ISP, recently spoke at the WIRED2014 conference about transforming the space industry with his company Satellogic. Seeking to make space accessible to all, Emiliano’s venture is working to produce and launch cost efficient satellites for research, exploration, mapping and more.

Also a WIRED Innovation Fellow, Emiliano has already launched three satellites at a fraction of the cost of traditional ones, with plans to launch more than a dozen in the next year. Satellogic could democratize access to space-based services by dramatically reducing the barriers to obtain real-time satellite data, aiming to eventually create a vast network of these nano-satellites  that can revolutionize daily life. Because Satellogic’s systems are so much quicker to build and significantly more affordable, they have the opportunity to cover every point on Earth, providing live hi-res imaging of the entire world.

“We’re at a tipping point in technology where we have the tools and the knowledge for anyone to build things and send them into space,” Emiliano said at the conference. “It’s the new Wild West.”

Inspired by the idea of “hacking”, Emiliano saw an opportunity to drive technological revolution in a multi-billion dollar industry. With a formal background in mathematics and philosophy, he spent the last two decades as a serial technology entrepreneur and innovator. He founded his first company at age 15; later he co-founded Core Security, developing pioneering work in the software sector.

Since his selection by Endeavor in 2014, Emiliano and his team have been set up with a local advisory board of Endeavor mentors who will help them refine their business model and continue to scale the company’s offerings.

Read more about Emiliano’s participation at the conference by clicking here.

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Emiliano speaking at the WIRED2014 event

Endeavor Entrepreneur Selçuk Atlı’s Second Venture Boostable Raises $3.2 Million

boostable-iconEndeavor Turkey Entrepreneur Selçuk Atlı, founder of Boostable, recently raised $3.2 million in a seed round to support the growing advertising platform. Led by Morado Ventures, Omidyar Network, SV Angel and more, the Y Combinator alumni company is Selçuk’s second venture after SocialWire.

Boostable’s innovative service doesn’t sell advertising directly – rather, marketplaces utilize its ad-buying tool to streamline the process of recommending ad space to sellers. Selçuk and his team saw an opportunity in the space after realizing that marketplaces make a lot of money on small margins, but many don’t have much to spend on targeted ads to customers. Marketplaces provide customer targeting data and promote the tool to their sellers, who simply set a budget and paste in the URL of their e-commerce store, room rental, crowd funding project, or event.

Boostable auto-generates creative for their listing and runs optimized ad campaigns on Facebook, targeting previous purchasers on that marketplace or new customers. These drive sales for the sellers, which earn fees for the marketplace and Boostable as well. The investment will help the company expand beyond its six-person team, court more marketplace giants like Ticketmaster and eBay, and add more social  channels like Twitter. Read more about the investment in TechCrunch.

Since his selection in 2011, Selçuk has received tailored mentoring services from Endeavor’s network and participated in a number of Endeavor events, including a Digital Media Tour, the SXSW Festival, and Investor Network networking sessions.

Endeavor Entrepreneur Diego Saez-Gil Joins Bluesmart Team to Launch World’s First “Smart” Carry-On Suitcase

logo-high-1Endeavor Colombia Entrepreneur Diego Saez-Gil, founder of WeHostels, and former Endeavor Global staff member Brian Chen recently joined the founding team of Bluesmart, a venture that launched the world’s first “smart” carry-on suitcase. Led by a team of expert engineers and designers, Bluesmart’s innovative suitcase is aimed at a market of tech-savvy travelers, with features including a built-in device charger, smart lock, luggage scale and GPS tracking, as well as support through a connected mobile app. Since the product’s launch on crowdfunding site IndieGoGo in early October, the team has raised over $500,000.

The New York City-based  team of  five saw an opportunity to tackle a traditional industry that, despite being a global multi-billion dollar market, had not seen appropriate innovation to match today’s well-connected traveler. With backgrounds in entrepreneurship, industrial design and computer engineering, the team joined together to create Bluesmart after a year of development. Made of polycarbonate and aluminum, the bag weighs only 8.5 pounds and meets TSA standards. It will be available for retail purchase in August 2015. Brian, a current MBA candidate, is a Co-founder overseeing Operations and Diego is a Co-founding Board Member who also serves as VP of Mobile at StudentUniverse.

Since it’s launch, Bluesmart has been featured in a number of media outlets, including WIRED Magazine, CNet, the Huffington Post, Mashable and more.

After being selected as an Endeavor Entrepreneur in 2012, Diego has been an active participant in many key learning and support activities provided by Endeavor, including networking events, branding tours, and mentoring sessions. Endeavor has also provided Diego the opportunity to meet with key investors and industry leaders through events organized by the Endeavor Investor NetworkIn 2013, Diego’s travel booking platform WeHostels was acquired by StudentUniverse.

42 High-Impact Entrepreneurs from 12 Countries Join the Endeavor Network at the 55th International Selection Panel in Istanbul

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Istanbul, Turkey – October 24, 2014 – At the 55th Endeavor International Selection Panel (ISP), 42 high-impact entrepreneurs leading 23 companies from 12 countries were welcomed into the Endeavor network.

Endeavor now supports 990 High-Impact Entrepreneurs from 629 companies across 21 countries. The entrepreneurs were chosen at a panel held from October 22nd – 24th in Istanbul.

The ISP is the culmination of an extensive multi-step selection process that is at the core of the Endeavor model. At the Istanbul ISP, top business and industry leaders from around the world interviewed candidates to discern their potential for high-impact growth, and then deliberated on whether or not the candidates should become Endeavor Entrepreneurs.

“The diversity of the businesses represented at this ISP is amazing,” said Endeavor co-founder and CEO Linda Rottenberg. “From mining services in Chile to transistor testing equipment in Malaysia, our network of high-impact entrepreneurs are truly innovating industries and transforming economies worldwide.”

After their selection into the Endeavor network, the entrepreneurs are given access to customized world-class services, including introductions to local and international mentors and volunteers from Fortune 500 consulting firms who will help them address key business needs. Since 1997, Endeavor Entrepreneurs have created thousands of jobs and built sustainable and transformative growth models in their home countries. In turn, they become crucial role models for future generations of entrepreneurs.

Endeavor will be hosting one more International Selection Panel in 2014 located in Miami, FL.

Brief descriptions of the newly selected entrepreneurs and their companies follow.

CHILE

Entrepreneur(s): Mario Flores
Company: Innovators Conveyer Belt
Conveyer belts are to mines what arteries are to the human body. As the main means of transport for minerals, losses of up to US$5 million per hour can be incurred when belts are deactivated for routine maintenance or replacement. Innovators reduces maintenance time for conveyer belts by 60% by minimizing the amount of equipment and personnel required in the process – saving mines millions of dollars per hour. The company developed a proprietary machine and repair method that turns the conventional repair process upside down (literally) by cutting and replacing the belt from below, as is the standard.

Entrepreneur(s): Gustavo Montero, Elvira Montero
Company: Imaginex
Many small businesses in Latin America do not have the budget or technical knkow how to purchase advanced enterprise software solutions, and rely instead on inefficient processes and basic spreadsheets to manage operations. Imaginex’s cloud-based, user-friendly operational management helps SMEs improve procurement and sales processes. Its main product, Bsale, has a special feature to expedite a lengthy online tax certification process and help companies submit electronic tax receipts in compliance with new regulation.

COLOMBIA

Entrepreneur(s): Sebastian Obregan, Danel Pelaez, Sebastian Molina
Company: Enmedio
In a tech-enabled world, static displays no longer engages a population accustomed to dynamic media. Enmedio is a digital signage company responding to the digital revolution with dynamic displays that deliver the right message to the right people at the right time and place. Digital signage is one of the fastest growing communication mediums in the world. Still nascent technology in Colombia, digital signage can change the way businesses communicate. With the largest digital signage coverage in the country, Enmedio will help accelerate the process of digitizing the physical world.

Entrepreneur(s): Hans Christian Boehlke, Carl Petter Boehlke, Alfredo Angel
Company: Aldeamo
Hans Christian Boehlke, Carl Petter Boehlke, and Alfredo Angel are creating aldeas móviles (“mobile villages”) all over the world. Aldeamo is helping customers communicate using any type of mobile phone (e.g. feature and smart) without having to use data or an Internet connection. Through established partnerships with 25 Mobile Network Operators (MNOs), Aldeamo connects audiences with shared interests and delivers targeted content to its users through a B2C subscription model that charges the end-user directly through its carrier billing. Aldeamo also provides mobile solutions to public and private entities through a B2B model, currently available in Colombia, Guatemala, Honduras, and Peru, This model consists of the following services: (i) Intelligent SMS, a two way communication system between entities and their clients or employees; and (ii) Imenus, a way to connect directly to information systems from any mobile phone, without using data.

EGYPT

Entrepreneur(s): Ahmed Badr, Amir Barsoum
Company: DrBridge
Few experiences transcend cultural boundaries the way a doctor’s visit does: neglected file cabinets overflowing with outdated patient records, cramped waiting rooms groaning with overcapacity, and overworked, baggy-eyed doctors burdened with frivolous administrative tasks. The health care system has reached an unparalleled level of inefficiency in Egypt, which spends 1% more of its GDP on health care than the average Middle East country, but has a life expectancy five years lower. DrBridge believes in the power of technology to overcome these inefficiencies. By delivering an end-to-end operations platform for doctors, patients, and pharmaceutical companies, DrBridge is ushering the technophobic medical profession into the digital era.

Entrepreneur(s): Mohamed Abbas, Dina Aly, Majd El Sherif
Company: Matter
Matter is a branding firm based in Cairo, Egypt. The agency came on the scene during the Egyptian Revolution in 2011, proving that their consistent and tried methodology was competitive with international firms. In 2013, the company was the first local brand agency in the Middle East to win a Dieline Packaging Award, a worldwide competition devoted to the art of consumer package design. As one of the first local agencies devoted entirely to branding, Matter has recruited top talent and secured local and international clients. In the last 10 months, the company grew its client base by 120%.

Entrepreneur(s): Laila Sedky, Adel Sedky
Company: NOLA Bakery
NOLA offers customers trendy affordable luxuries through its wide variety of freshly-baked delicious desserts that are new to the Egyptian market. NOLA focuses on the customer experience, providing a sophisticated yet cheerful setting with top customer service. For a customer, stepping into a NOLA store should be like strolling into a French bakery in Paris, with tantalizing aromas and smiling faces greeting the customer as they walk through the door. Currently, NOLA’s main product lines revolve around cupcakes in a range of flavors although it recently expanded its offering into other dessert categories like the cronut, cheesecakes, and NOLA cakes.

GREECE

Entrepreneur(s): Dimitris Koutsolioutsos
Company: Farmer’s Republic
New York has the Union Square Market, London has Borough Market and now Greece has Farmers Republic! In a time when Greece’s Central Market is widely criticized for its relationship with farmers and quality of produce, Farmers Republic has created a disruptive physical and virtual market place—giving farmers agency over their sales with better margins and consumers higher quality certified produce. Farmers Republic is a fair-farming enterprise offering its consumers the ability to enjoy fresh produce directly from small-scale, certified producers, through its open air markets, online store, grocery store and monthly delivery service. Farmers Republic has built a superior reputation compared to other grocery stores and markets through authentically connecting with both its supplier and consumers: the farmers know that Farmers Republic will always be reliable and reasonably priced while consumers can trust that the produce will be of a certain standard through its rigorous certification process.

Entrepreneur(s): Odysseas Ntotsikas
Company: Think Digital Group
Many publishers fill their sites with underpriced advertisements and are pushed aside as advertisers opt for international competitors with huge reach and technological prowess (Facebook, Twitter, etc.). Meanwhile, advertisers struggle to efficiently find the publishers that will maximize value for their ad-spend with a relevant audience and gripping content. Think Digital Group (TDG) connects publishers with advertisers through its publisher network and ad-exchange. As a publisher network, TDG acts as an outsourced salesforce for publishers, semi-manually finding the right advertisers at the right price. Its recently launched ad-exchange, Project Agora,allows advertisers to bid on bundles of ad-space segmented by different audience groups. TDG now counts some of Greece and Romania’s largest publishers among its clients, and as it expands into new markets. Seeking to change how advertising is done across Southeast and Centrel Europe, as well as MENA, Think Digital is thinking big.

Entrepreneur(s): George Voulgaroudis, Dimitris Dimitriadis
Company: Brainbox
Through its automated bike-sharing system, Brainbox offers an efficient and cost effective alternative to vehicular transportation. Bike-sharing combines the convenience and flexibility of a private vehicle with the accessibility and reliability of public mass transit without the obligation of owning a bicycle. With installations across Greece, Cyprus, and Poland, last year alone, individuals cycled nearly a million miles, saving more than 150 tons of carbon dioxide, the equivalent of consuming 17,000 gallons of gasoline.

INDONESIA

Entrepreneur(s): Hanifa Ambadar
Company: Female Daily Network
Female Daily Network (FDN) helps Indonesian women look and feel beautiful. Its primary portal, FemaleDaily.com, provides beauty related content to help women navigate an industry with more available products than any other retail vertical. Its customer product reviews, tip-filled articles, and video tutorials help women become beauty aficionados able to navigate countless options for makeup, skincare, treatments, and trends. The parallel portal for mothers, MommiesDaily.com, attracts FemaleDaily.com visitors as they move through new stages of life. Together, the sites create a cohesive online community that facilitates peer-to-peer connections over shared passions and concerns.

Entrepreneur(s): Bede Moore, Susie Sugden
Company: Vela Asia
Vela Asia offers a suite of end-to-end ecommerce solutions to brick-and-mortar retailers in Indonesia and international brands trying to navigate the nuances of the Indonesian market. Vela delivers the expertise and infrastructure to bring its clients online throughout the ecommerce value chain from digital marketing to warehousing and fulfillment. As a boot-strapped startup, Vela generates additional revenue through modules aimed at a particular pain point along the value chain. The company also operates multi-brand portals under websites Kukuruyuk.com and Paraplou.com (Q4 2014e), which sell electronics and fashion products respectively. Vela aims to become Southeast Asia’s leading multi-platform ecommerce retailer. In the last six months, Vela Asia has grown by 160%, attracting well-known Indonesian and international brands as clients, including Indonesia’s leading shoe manufacturer Yongki Komaladi, global clothier Lee Cooper, and international footwear brand Havaianas.

JORDAN

Entrepreneur(s): Nasser Saleh
Company: Madfoo3atCom
Before Madfoo3atCom, the inconvenience of paying bills in Jordan was enough to make Jordanians wish they could buy back lost time. Jordanians went to the bank to withdraw money and traveled to each biller’s payment locations to physically deliver the money owed; rearranging their schedules to arrive during business hours and make time for lengthy queues. Meanwhile, billers incurred over 50% late payments and struggled to keep track of these cash payments. Madfoo3atCom, launched in June 2014, introduced a real-time bill presentment and payment system that enables the billers’ clients to inquire about and pay their bills via convenient and secure electronic channels 24/7. In 2013, the company secured an eight-year exclusive contract with the Central Bank of Jordan mandating that all 26 banks in the country process electronic payments through the company’s platform. Since launch, Madfoo3atCom averages 50 transactions per day, without any marketing. With plans for expansion in the region, the company is looking to average 125K transactions per day, grossing US$18.0M in revenues by 2017.

MALAYSIA

Entrepreneur(s): Sang Beng Ng
Company: Aemulus
Semiconductors are the electrical circuits that make any computerized device function — from cell phones, to jumbo jets, to rain sensors in cars. Before a semiconductor is placed in any cell phone or device, it must be rigorously tested through an expensive, time-consuming process in order to assure its compatibility with the device. Aemulus designs and produces semiconductor testers that reduce the overall cost of testing the semiconductors by upwards of 50% and perform 15-80% faster than competitors’ offerings. As a relatively recent market entrant with a unique relationship with its clients, Aemulus has excellent insight into the demands of the market and is agile enough to respond before its larger, more established competitors—taking away market share from multinationals such as National Instruments in Malaysia. Aemulus has had impressive growth and could be a shining example of a homegrown company that dares to compete with global giants on the basis of technological excellence.

MEXICO

Entrepreneur: Marco Polo Bautista
Company: Game Planet
Game Planet strives to make the process of buying games just as fun as playing them. It offers the easiest and most seamless buying experience for customers in Mexico. In addition to selecting from thousands of new titles and consoles, customers can trade in used-games and attend exclusive video game launch parties. For example, in 2011 Game Planet organized a launch party for Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2, a best-selling first-person shooter game. Partnering with Cinepolis, Mexico’s largest theater group, Game Planet allowed over 1,000 people to play the game before anybody else in the world at a movie theater prior to the game’s midnight launch and meet the game’s developers, who flew in from the US. Originally a vendor in a local bazaar, Game Planet now operates 91 stores and is the largest video game retailer in Mexico.

MIAMI

Entrepreneur(s): Ginny Simon, Steve Simon, Mike Simon
Company: ginnybakes
Eating healthy doesn’t mean eating poorly. Just ask Ginny Simon, her husband, Steve, and their son, Mike. They founded ginnybakes, a Miami-based company producing feel-good cookies, bake mixes, and health bars that have the added benefit of being organic and gluten-free. ginnybakes offers consumers outrageously delicious and healthy snacks baked with the highest quality ingredients. The ginnybakes team has leveraged close relationships with distributors in a fragmented and competitive market to sell its products in many large retailers like Whole Foods and Publix within the U.S. Its blend of premium-quality ingredients and complete ownership of the production cycle differentiates the company from its competition, as it can maintain fresh cookies while achieving economies of scale with integrated production facilities.

Entrepreneur(s): Scott Harris
Company: DeliverLean
DeliverLean has the recipe to maximize your health, your time, and your life. Many of us want to eat healthy but lack the time or energy to do so. Scott Harris (43) founded DeliverLean to empower customers to eat well and live healthy lives. DeliverLean prepares and distributes nutrient-dense, gourmet meals and sells cold pressed juices and raw vegan snacks at select retail locations nationwide. Named the eighth fastest growing Food & Beverage company in the U.S. in 2013 by Inc. Magazine, DeliverLean has ambitious plans to change the way the world think about and consume food. .

SAUDI ARABIA

Entrepreneur(s): Khalid al-Kudair
Company: Glowork
The glass ceiling in Saudi Arabia is quickly becoming a desert mirage. For women, the Saudi job market is one of the toughest in the world; only 30% of women are employed, but those who are unemployed are far from unqualified — 75% of them hold a college degree. Legislative restrictions on women’s ability to drive, coupled with social constraints around sharing personal information and CVs, engender a workforce employing only half of the country’s brainpower. Glowork is dedicated to creating equal opportunities for women by bridging the gap between employers and female jobseekers. Having placed 20,000 women in only jobs in three years, Glowork is leveraging its stellar brand reputation to launch into other business verticals where women are underserved, to shake up industries that have historically catered to men.

SPAIN

Entrepreneur(s): Salvador Carrillo, Alberto Benbunan
Company: Mobile Dreams Factory
Behind every swipe, tap and scroll on a mobile app lies an assembly line. This mobile assembly line first designs the user experience, then integrates the app with existing back-end software, then manages the mobile advertising, all before landing on a consumer’s screen. To manufacture this successful mobile strategy, clients go to the Mobile Dreams Factory (MDF), which provides end-to-end services to complete a client’s mobile transformation. With 27 mobile marketing awards, including the Gold Lion in Cannes, Eurobest, and the Gold IAB award, MDF has established itself as a leader in mobile solutions for a European m-commerce market that will exceed US$32B in 2014. Having secured premiere clients such as Burger King, eBay, and Vodafone and expanded into new geographies beyond Spain, the entrepreneurs behind MDF, Salvador Carrillo and Alberto Benbunan, are on their way to making their own mobile dreams come true.

TURKEY

Entrepreneur(s): Barbaros Serdar Özbugutu, Tahsin Isin
Company: Iyzico
With Iyzico, accepting online payments has never been easier. From obtaining contracts with banks to systemic fraud, Turkish companies, both large and small, struggle with online payments. Fortunately, Iyzico is transforming the payment processing experience for businesses through its bank-integrated, fraud-protected payment platform tailored to the nuances of the Turkish market. Iyzico’s two API platforms connect 22 banks and payment companies with over 850 merchants, enabling merchants to accept online payments in the easiest and safest manner. Iyzico’s experienced team and local know how–from collective 33 years experience in the payment market to personally setting up all the contracts with the banks–enable it to offer a more sophisticated and adaptable platform than competitors in Turkey. While there are many global competitors in the online payment market—namely Stripe and World Pay—none have entered the Turkish market because of the high barriers to entry, providing Iyzico with a window of opportunity.

Entrepreneur(s): Hande Cilingir, Serhat Soyouerel, Arda Koterin, Sinan Toktay
Company: Insider
E-commerce in Turkey and MENA is a gold-rush, and Insider is right there to sell the spade. As these geographies’ economies become increasingly digital, companies need the technical tools to mine ecommerce for its full potential. Insider sells cloud-based suites of ecommerce tools that enable clients to convert their visitors to customers. These tools include a behavioral targeting module that creates personalized campaigns for visitors, a module that incentivizes visitors to interact with a client on social media, and over a dozen other tools. Founded in 2012, the company has already attracted premiere clients in Turkey and abroad, such as Groupon, Avis, and Nine West.

Entrepreneur(s): Murat Sahin
Company: Secure Drive
Secure yourself some peace of mind and don’t drive yourself crazy finding airport transportation – leave that to Secure Drive. Too often in Turkey getting to the airport is as big a hassle as the trip itself. Taxis are expensive, public transportation is inconvenient, and illegal car services are unreliable. Established in 2005 by Murat Şahin (43), Secure Drive is the first company in Turkey to offer door-to-door shared shuttle rides to and from airports as well as ski and beach resorts. With a fleet of over 100 cars and operating in nine of Turkey’s largest cities, the company is already the third largest shuttle service in Europe. With Turkey emerging as a vital transportation hub — Istanbul’s new airport alone is expected to accommodate 150 million travelers in 2017 — Secure Drive is ready for lift off.

Entrepreneur(s): Ahmet M. Hançer, Burak Yücelyiğit
Company: Enocta
Through its flexible online platform and vast catalogue of off-the-shelf training content, Enocta provides clients with a convenient one-stop-shop for corporate training solutions. Over the last 13 years, Enocta has developed a breadth of top courses and informal learning methods to increase individual user engagement on the platform. Enocta’s SaaS platform is versatile which allows it to house a range of content be it Enocta’s proprietary courses, a client’s corporate training programs, or even a competitor’s solutions.

Fifth Annual Endeavor Colombia Conference Brings Together Top Latin American Network Members in Bogotá

logo-endeavorThe 5th annual Endeavor Colombia Conference took place in Bogotá this month with the theme “A Day to Think Big”, aiming to inspire entrepreneurs and audiences with the high-impact stories of Endeavor’s network and provide a top forum for networking. The Conference brought together over 250 Endeavor stakeholders, including entrepreneurs, board members, and mentors from across Latin America.

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The opening panel featuring key members of the Endeavor network

The event marked the first time Endeavor Colombia partnered with Foros El Espectador, a top organizer of business conferences and events in the region. Of the attendees, 17 panelists from Mexico, Chile, the US and Colombia were present, as well as Endeavor Colombia mentors Juanita Ochoa and Fernando Anzures, Endeavor Miami Board Member Adriana Cisneros and Endeavor Investor Network member Chris Rogers.

Eight Endeavor Entrepreneurs from Mexico, Colombia and Chile were present, including  Carlos Anaya of Parkimovil, Diego Solorzano of Carrot.mx, Arturo Galvan of Naranya,  Alex Torrenegra and Tania Zapata of Bunny Inc., Kenneth Mendiwelson of Refinancia, Mario Hernandez of Marroquinera and Jorge Nazer of ALTO.

The content of the day-long conference opened with a panel about international expansion strategies featuring Endeavor Entrepreneurs and network members, followed by multiple panels focused on marketing trends, the impact of entrepreneurship in urban areas, and entrepreneurial success stories. Subsequent workshop events were themed around challenges in investments and marketing.

Read press coverage of the conference in El Espectador by clicking here.

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Attendees fill the room during a conference panel

Saudi Arabia’s Lomar Launches New Retail Concept and Line of Women-Focused Apparel

lomar

Saudi Arabian entrepreneur company Lomar, founded by Loai Naseem, recently launched a new store concept along with a new line of apparel targeted towards women. The thobe-focused fashion house has been an innovator in its sector since it began in 2005, taking a once standard and uniform garment and bringing it into the modern world with luxury design.

In October, Lomar hosted an “And Her” event to launch its new retail experience in a new flagship store in the city of Jeddah. Hosted by Saudi media personality Muna Abusulayman, the launch brings a full retail experience to the Lomar family by offering an innovative one-stop shopping experience for both men and women. Continuing the legacy Lomar has forged by redefining the thobe, the company has now turned its sights to the needs of Saudi women, embarking on a two-year product development and research effort to identify the material and design needs of female consumers. This culminated in the launch of a new women’s line that rethinks the abaya and can serve the needs of a variety of occasions and settings. The event was attended by fashion enthusiasts and bloggers as well as a number of social media celebrities from the region.

Since his selection into the network in 2012, Loai has been set up with a local advisory board of experts in the retail industry who will help his team refine their business model and expansion strategy. The company currently employs over 500 people.

Read more about the event by clicking here.

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Attendees at the Lomar launch event

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