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PepsiCo Foundation and INJAZ Al-Arab Partner to Empower Hundreds of Young Saudi Female Entrepreneurs

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The new program is launched to expand PepsiCo’s female empowerment platform “Tamakani”, in line with Saudi’s 2030 vision on women empowerment and job creation.


The program will provide 500 Saudi female university students entrepreneurship education and training.

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, 27 October 2019: The PepsiCo Foundation – the philanthropic arm of PepsiCo, one of the world’s leading food and beverage companies – and INJAZ Al-Arab have partnered to launch a new entrepreneurship development program to support and inspire generations of women in the Kingdom.

The program is part of PepsiCo’s expansive women’s empowerment platform, Tamakani that was launched in June 2019 and it will provide professional training, mentorship, soft and technical skills education to 500 Female Saudi university students through June 2020. PepsiCo’s aims to provide support for young entrepreneurs to transform their business ideas in the food and beverage industry into successful regional business ventures. Students will be eligible to participate in an Innovation Camp and Company Program.

Speaking at the launch ceremony, Mr. Tamer Mosalam, PepsiCo’s Gulf & Levant Foods Vice President and Business Unit General Manager, said: “We are extremely proud to partner with INJAZ Al-Arab to launch this new entrepreneurship development program in Saudi Arabia which is the next phase of our Tamakani platform. Empowering women in Saudi Arabia and around the world is a priority for The PepsiCo Foundation. It is a source of great pride that we are helping to develop the ideas of the Kingdom’s future entrepreneurs.” 2-copy

Globally, The PepsiCo Foundation works with leading non-profit organizations like INJAZ Al Arab to empower women around the world, understanding that when a woman has the time and opportunities to learn, her children are better fed, healthier, and more likely to be educated themselves. PepsiCo plans to invest USD $100 million in initiatives that will benefit 12.5 million women and girls by 2025. In doing so, PepsiCo believes it can help spark a virtuous cycle that is essential to building a more sustainable food system.

The PepsiCo Foundation in coordination with INJAZ Al-Arab will commence volunteer recruitment and training, after which the initiative will be announced at universities in Riyadh, Jeddah, and Dammam, calling on ambitious female students with entrepreneurial aspirations to apply.

The 500 selected students will then enter, the entrepreneurship development program run by The PepsiCo Foundation and INJAZ Al-Arab – through INJAZ Saudi. The program includes a series of one-day Innovation Camps, at which the students will present their business plans to an expert panel of judges comprised of members of PepsiCo’s leadership. Ten students’ teams will be chosen from the Innovation camps and invited to a Job Shadow Day at PepsiCo’s local manufacturing facilities and offices, where they will learn firsthand about business practices across – including product lines management, manufacturing procedures and supply chain processes.

Next, the five winning teams will be enrolled in INJAZ Saudi’s flagship Company Program; a customized 10-week business simulation specifically designed to enable university students to undergo and complete the full  cycle of establishing and operating an enterprise. This encompasses identifying a viable business idea, raising capital, recognizing challenges and opportunities, preparing a business plan and marketing their product or service. The teams will then present their products and services to a panel of prominent local business leaders during a national contest, where they will be competing for the coveted ‘Best Company of the Year Award’.

Lastly, two of the five finalist teams will be selected by a panel of judges comprised of PepsiCo employee volunteers, academic experts, other members of the private sector, as well as INJAZ Saudi for seed funding and advanced mentorship. These teams will receive a financial contribution, as well as four months of hands-on business training from a local startup mentorship organization.

Akef Aqrabawi, President & CEO, JA Worldwide Inc. (INJAZ Al-Arab) said, “ Our strategic partnership  with PepsiCo Foundation is aligned with the country’s 2030 vision in supporting women empowerment initiatives and facilitating job creation through entrepreneurship, to help create economic independence for Saudi women, as well as positively influence their role as key players in the country’s economy. ”

Earlier this year PepsiCo launched the Tamakani platform, which supports women in the workforce and addresses topics including work-life balance; career growth; overcoming professional challenges; female empowerment support and mentor to younger generations of Saudi women to push boundaries. The platform aims to highlight women with influence who are shaping the future of the Kingdom. The initiative will also focus on engaging men as advocates who support women as co-workers and family members.

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