Veranstaltungsberichte

Navigating Entrepreneurship

A Nationwide Entrepreneurship Competition

After the great success of our first Navigating Entrepreneurship competition in 2021, Rural Entrepreneurs and the Konrad Adenauer Foundation hosted a second round - this time on a national level. The project successfully trained and guided grade 11 and 12 students in building entrepreneurial skills and developing business ideas, helping them to tap into world of entrepreneurship. The students were expected to come up with start-up pitches that would target challenges faced personally or in their community, and which would contribute to Lebanon with a socially valuable input.

Lebanon has reached unprecedented times with the country’s poverty rates increasing rapidly, unemployment increasing at an estimation of over 50%, businesses closing as the economic crisis deepens and more obstacles face the country day after day. Yet this country has undoubtedly a lot of young, talented, educated and creative individuals. High school and university students freshly graduating are facing major obstacles in the labor market, especially with the significant mismatch between supply and demand of labor in the Lebanon. With this project, students were encouraged to create their own business concept and develop their entrepreneurial spirit from a young age. 

Our participants came from all governorates in Lebanon - particularly rural areas. Students who successfully applied completed an entrepreneurship training over several weeks. During their training, both German and Lebanese mentors advised the students in their business development. The bootcamp included interactive working sessions, video cases, and inspirational talks with entrepreneurs as well as practical applications of the concepts delivered by mentors. Each governorate chose 2-3 winning teams, which in turn competed against each other on the national level.

 

The final pitch day took place on the 24th of April, 2021 in The Spot Mall in Choueifat, where the teams presented their ideas in front of a jury and an audience. 

 

Eight teams introduced the audience to their ideas: 

Unlimited power: an application that is tailored and specialized to aid Lebanese children with learning disabilities.

Leafix: an eco-friendly startup that produces paper packages from fallen leaves through a chemical process.

True Career: a website for students who are unsure of their future majors in university, providing advice and expert counseling. 

Farmolla: an agri-start up that cultivates Azolla, a cheap and sustainably held plant that serves as qualified fodder for farms. While Azolla is already produced and sold in various countries, it has not yet been introduced locally in Lebanon. 

Bytna Bytak: an online platform were anyone can easily order Lebanese rural, home-made specialities from the comfort of their home.

Warmly: an electrical re-chargeable insole that warms the feet, developed in light of the absence of central heating in Lebanon and the rise of cost of gas, petrol and other traditional fuels for room heating.

Tailor’s magic: a sewing workshop in south Lebanon where clothes, including religious attire, is produced to affordable prices. The start-up employs women in rural areas. 

Dokany: a mobile app and web based marketplace that curates and compares prices of various local grocery shop products to enhance the grocery shopping experiences. It offers a wide selection of Lebanese vendors. 

Leafix, Dokany and Unlimited Power were singled out as the winners of the competition, yet all teams presented remarkably sophisticated and innovative business ideas. 

The project successfully raised awareness on the value and importance of entrepreneurship in today’s workplace and equipped high school students with the proper mindset and tools to approach problems in innovative ways. 

We are thankful to all the students for participating, putting in immense effort and presenting us their interesting ideas in engaging presentations, and to our partner Rural Entrepreneurs for the fruitful collaboration.

Kontakt

Valentina von Finckenstein