A Saudi Arabian delegation, under the leadership of Monsha’at, the Small and Medium Enterprises General Authority of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, recently made a significant impact at the Global Entrepreneurship Congress 2023 (GEC23). This delegation involved some of Saudi Arabia’s leading entrepreneurs, and it played a pivotal role in fostering entrepreneurship, not only in the Kingdom but also on the global stage.
One of the primary objectives of Monsha’at’s participation was to support Saudi entrepreneurs on their journey to global recognition. The event provided an ideal platform for discussing potential opportunities with key players and facilitators in the global SME sector. Furthermore, it was a hub for establishing partnerships that can drive entrepreneurship to new heights, both within Saudi Arabia and internationally.
During the closing session of the event’s first day, themed “Change your world: outlook to the future ahead,” Saud Al-Sabhan, Vice Governor for Entrepreneurship at Monsha’at, delivered a compelling address. He emphasized the critical role that Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) play in the local economy. However, Al-Sabhan stressed that for SMEs to thrive, a conducive ecosystem must take place. Moreover, SMEs need to engage with supportive opportunities that enable them to effectively realize their objectives. Collaboration with local and international partners, both from public and private institutions, was highlighted as a vital component in empowering SMEs to integrate across diverse sectors, overcome challenges, and foster a culture of entrepreneurship more swiftly and effectively.
Representing Saudi Arabia at GEC23 were several accomplished national entrepreneurs who are doing big things in the global startup ecosystem. One of the entrepreneurs is Salem Aljawini, the Founding Partner at RasMal. His company offers a subscription-based, all-in-one platform designed to streamline equity management, facilitate fundraising, and enhance governance processes for companies, all at the click of a button. Aljawini sees an exciting future for Saudi startups, citing several factors contributing to the Kingdom’s emergence as a startup hotspot. These factors include increased access to capital, a nurturing different entrepreneurial projects, and a rise in the quality of founders and their teams.
Another participant from Saudi Arabia was WakeCap, a technology and construction firm that has introduced real-time field reporting at construction sites. Hassan Al-Balawi, the Founder & CEO of WakeCap, focused on the role of persistence in the entrepreneurial journey. He highlighted how persistence, whether in raising funds from investors, hiring and leading the right team, or staying ahead of the competition, is a key value that any successful entrepreneur must possess.
Additionally, the Global Entrepreneurship Network (GEN) announced that the next edition of the Entrepreneurship World Cup (EWC) will be hosted in Saudi Arabia, at the Biban Forum in 2024. Co-hosted by GEN and Monsha’at, the EWC stands as one of the world’s largest pitch competitions and startup support programs. This announcement underscores Saudi Arabia’s increasing prominence on the global entrepreneurship stage.
The Saudi Arabian delegation’s active participation at GEC23 and the Kingdom’s commitment to fostering entrepreneurship are clear indicators of the nation’s growing influence and contributions to the global entrepreneurial landscape. Saudi entrepreneurs are not only excelling on their own country but are also creating an impact on the world stage. The Kingdom’s vibrant startup ecosystem, combined with its strategic partnerships, makes it an ideal space for entrepreneurship and innovation.