Many people from around the world head to the city of Cairo each year in hopes of immersing themselves in the history and culture of this fascinating destination. However, there are also many entrepreneurs that visit the Egypt capital looking for startup opportunities – meaning companies from Cairo to Alexandria are forming to mimic their Western counterparts Amazon. This, of course, surprises many since recent news from World Bank was released that Cairo loses an average of $8B in GDP due to congested streets.
Even with massive roadblocks, protesting citizens and unorganized marches through the capital, ecommerce companies are finding ways to grow their presence and keep the Egypt economy afloat. Recent news from The Daily Egypt that Egyptian workers were pulling out of Libya should be seen as more of a precautionary measure as opposed to a backsliding economy.
“Growth, in comparison to other ecommerce and local business fixtures, has been tremendous for us.” stated Jumia CEO Mattia Perroni, an outspoken internet access magnate and now-quarterback of the company coined by Reuters as the “Amazon of the Middle East”. From traffic information apps to high end technology, Perroni isn’t the only CEO navigating a country through turmoil on the roads, however.
Those familar with Bey2ollak, a marketing-revenue driven startup that recently partnered with Vodafone, know that this relatively young company is on to something special. Founded shortly after the ousting of Mubarak in 2011, this traffic app allows individuals to navigate the congested roadways of Cairo and surrounding areas, and has been literally shaving minutes off local commute since its launch. Even major corporations are seeing mobile sales increase amidst chaos.
Android phones produced by Sony Corporation is expected to account for 32% of all mobile sales by 2016, which speaks volumes about the cellular presence in the region. You can discover more about Sony Middle East manager Younes Cherkaoui by reading his interview here.
China, UK and USA technologies are certainly the headline of every daily tech mag – these are countries, however, that are innovating during peacetime. Middle Eastern countries like Egypt are dominating their industry, and doing so regardless what chaotic episodes transpire around them, which certainly commands some respect.
Technology has become an all-consuming affair in some of our lives, meaning many don’t have time to be bored. But does boredom serve an important purpose for us as human beings? If you’re living in Egypt right now, technology is definitely better than most available alternatives.