Magazine article Screen International

Opportunities for MENA Entrepreneurs

Magazine article Screen International

Opportunities for MENA Entrepreneurs

Article excerpt

Abu Dhabi Media Summit turns focus on entrepreneurship.

Dan Senor, co-author of Start-up Nation, has told delegates at the Abu Dhabi Media Summit that the start-up economy of the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region "can take off like a rocket ship" providing it meets certain market criteria.

Senor spoke of the opportunities for rising entrepreneurs in the MENA region:

"If you have a combination of a huge market with hungry entrepreneurs who are not as risk adverse, and you add in expertise in venture capital and also building companies, if you can combine all that, this region can just take off like a rocket ship," explained the author and senior adviser at Elliott Management.

Senor drew on the example of Israel as a country which, in the early 1990s, had become the "farmers of high technology", using the government-funded Yozma program to invest in private venture capital funds and help to build an innovation-based economy.

"There was a recognition in Israel that, while they had tremendous technological talent and research and development capabilities, they lacked a real understanding of how to build companies, how to assess risk and how to manage". …

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