Entrepreneurship Festival in Assiut to Celebrate One Year of Orange Corners Egypt
Showcasing the impact of the Orange Corners Egypt programme and the work of the 61 entrepreneurs who graduated from it so far. With VIP guests in attendance including H.E. Minister of International Cooperation Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat, Governor of Assiut General Essam Saad, H.E. Ambassador of the Kingdom of The Netherlands to the Arab Republic of Egypt Mr. Han-Maurits Schaapveld, and Managing Director and CEO of ALEXBANK Mr. Dante Campioni.
On the 20th of March 2022, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in the Arab Republic of Egypt, together with the Ministry of International Cooperation and the main partner ALEXBANK, organized the ‘Orange Corners Egypt’ entrepreneurship festival in Assiut. The festival marked the occasion of the first anniversary of the Orange Corners Egypt programme, with VIP guests in attendance including H.E. Minister of International Cooperation Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat, Governor of Assiut General Essam Saad, Ambassador of the Kingdom of The Netherlands to the Arab Republic of Egypt Mr. Han-Maurits Schaapveld, and Managing Director and CEO of ALEXBANK Mr. Dante Campioni.
Orange Corners Egypt is an initiative of the Kingdom of The Netherlands that provides young entrepreneurs with training, networks and facilities to start and grow innovative businesses. The initiative consists of two separate incubation programmes – one in Cairo and one in Upper Egypt (Assiut) – each of which offers recurring 6-month training cycles for 15-25 entrepreneurs at a time. The entrepreneurial training pays special attention to startups in agriculture and the creative sector and ensures a minimum of 50% participation of female entrepreneurs. The Orange Corners programme is executed by local implementing partners Cultiv (Cairo) and Outreach Egypt Consultancy for Development (Upper Egypt).
Over the past year, the two programmes in Cairo and Upper Egypt have collectively graduated 61 entrepreneurs, 35 of whom are female. Examples include Seavo, a startup providing sustainable marine entertainment that was subsequently invited to pitch in front of H.E. Prime Minister of the Arab Republic of Egypt Mostafa Madbouly, and Snacks Fully, a women-owned startup in the agriculture sector providing healthy snacks from dried fruits, offering training and job opportunities for youth in Upper Egypt.
H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat, the Minister of International Cooperation emphasized, “Continuously striving to catalyze the development of an agile entrepreneurial ecosystem, Egypt is unlocking its position as a hub for creativity and innovation in the Middle East and Africa. Within Orange Corners, there has been a total of 61 graduated startups by March 2022, of which 57% are female-led. Each start-up, while at a different stage, brings to the table new ideas and faster solutions with defined potential. Today, and with our partners, we’re also celebrating the success of the start-ups which have witnessed a 43% growth in their revenues. This program is a clear example of how the private sector can engage in supporting entrepreneurship, inevitably contributing to economic growth and increased market competitiveness.”
H.E. Han-Maurits Schaapveld, Ambassador of the Kingdom of The Netherlands to the Arab Republic of Egypt expressed his happiness to be part of the efforts supporting young Egyptian entrepreneurs. He stated: "The Netherlands promotes an ambitious sustainable aid, trade and investment policy aimed at finding win-win solutions globally, and entrepreneurship plays a vital role by contributing to innovation and the reduction of unemployment.” He continued: “Young Egyptian entrepreneurs have proven to be risk-takers who dare to drive change, often with limited resources, and the entrepreneurial programme Orange Corners in Egypt assists these young entrepreneurs in developing not only their ideas but also their personal skills.”
Mr. Dante Campioni, Managing Director and CEO of ALEXBANK, commented: ““Our participation in the Orange Corners Egypt entrepreneurship programme stems from ALEXBANK’s wish to contribute to the sustainable development of our society, which guides us to collaborate with impactful stakeholders to support initiatives promoting the economic growth of our communities. Accessibility of financial resources is a main pillar for startups to succeed and become sustainable, which is why it is a proud moment for us to see 61 startups graduate here today, with some of our graduates mentored by our experts already receiving considerable amounts of funding. We are honored to celebrate the first successful year of Orange Corners Egypt together with the Ministry of International Cooperation and the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in the Arab Republic of Egypt and extremely proud of the results of the first 2 cycles, accomplishing our goal of preparing the startups to venture and grow within their respective fields.”
The entrepreneurship festival consisted of a number of keynote speeches, a panel discussion featuring Co-Founder and Chief Investment Officer of TBS – The Bakery Shop Mr. Sameh El-Sadat, Founder of Handmade for Trade and Distribution Mrs. Hala Ashour and Founder of Schaduf, Eng. Sherif Hosny, an entrepreneurial and a graduation ceremony featuring the entrepreneurs who participated in the most recent cycle of the Orange Corners Egypt programme. The aim of the event was to showcase the work of the young entrepreneurs who took or are still taking part in the Orange Corners Egypt programme to a large group of stakeholders and to create networking opportunities between the entrepreneurial ecosystems of Cairo and Assiut.
Orange Corners Egypt is looking to strengthen its collaboration with the local Egyptian private sector further and welcomes new private partners to contribute to the programme financially and/or in-kind. For more information or to request a partnership proposal, please contact the Embassy of the Kingdom of The Netherlands in the Arab Republic of Egypt, via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Are you a young person with an entrepreneurial idea or a starting business who is interested to participate in the Orange Corners Egypt programme? Please find more information via the Orange Corners Cairo and Orange Corners Upper Egypt Facebook pages or via www.orangecorners.com.
- Orange Corners
The global Orange Corners programme is managed by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency at the request of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of The Kingdom of The Netherlands. Each Orange Corner is initiated by the local Dutch Embassy, in close collaboration with local partners. Orange Corners aims to increase job prospects for youth, and does so by supporting ecosystems for young entrepreneurship and youth employment. The target group for Orange Corners is youth between the ages of 18 to 35 in Africa and the Middle East. Currently Orange Corners operates in over 15 countries and regions. More information on the programme can be found via https://www.orangecorners.com/.
For more information about Orange Corners in Egypt, please check the Orange Corners Cairo and Orange Corners Upper Egypt Facebook pages and follow the Embassy of The Netherlands in Egypt via their website and Facebook,
- Ministry of International Cooperation
For more information, please visit: https://www.moic.gov.eg
ALEXBANK - a bank of Intesa Sanpaolo, is one of Egypt’s leading private banks. ALEXBANK has an approach to value creation that prevails in its day-to-day operations and take a long-term approach to sustainably serve the interests of all our stakeholders, including customers, employees, shareholders, suppliers, potential customers, the environment, and the community at large. Our business embraces 1.584 million customers who are served by 4,509 employees. Our community benefits from one of Egypt’s largest distribution networks, with 175 branches and over 377 ATMs across the nation. For more information, visit www.alexbank.com
- Embassy of the Kingdom of The Netherlands in the Arab Republic of Egypt
Sally Barsoum, Policy Officer for Public Diplomacy:
- Ministry of International Cooperation
Sayed Badr, Media Coordinator
Dania Akkawi, Communications Executive
Farah El Labbad, PR Senior Officer