Business Opportunities in the Middle East
Online • March 9, 2011
Listen to Noor Sweid and entrepreneur Shimi Shah dial in from Dubai to share their insights on business opportunities that are untapped and growing in the region.
Wednesday, March 9, 2011 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM EST
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The Middle East is hot – literally and figuratively! Listen to 85 Broads Chapter Leader Noor Sweid and entrepreneur Shimi Shah dial in from Dubai to share their insights on business opportunities that are untapped and growing in the region. Ask them about specific ideas and concepts you may want to promote, but are unsure where to start and whether there is even a potential market. Take advantage of this Jam Session to garner some market research on a part of the world that houses several hundred million people.
About Shimi Shah:
Shimi has been actively involved in angel investing and venture capital for over 15 years and has made over 50 investments in early and expansion stage transactions, of which many have been successfully exited with superior returns for investors. Shimi has established several new businesses, one of which is a start-up and SME advisory business called Carousel Solutions (www.carousel-solutions.com), Carousel provides assistance for start-ups and small businesses in relation to expansion plans, business planning, and other strategic initiatives such as capital raising and exits. Another business is a pioneering new company called Tilly & Pinch, a social selling business in the accessories sector (www.tillyandpinch.com). Shimi is also currently a senior advisor to a US based medical product start-up company called Ziivaa.
Shimi was previously Chief Executive Officer for FORSA LLC, a UAE based investment company with a specialized focus on women in the GCC region, where she managed over $100m in proprietary and third party funds. Prior to joining FORSA, Shimi was a Partner at Porton Capital, a global venture capital company focusing on investments from Government Departments and Universities, specializing in commercializing technologies and taking them to market. Shimi invested over $100m and managed a portfolio of over 15 companies, with several board seats, as well as having full operational control of the business.
Shimi started out in project finance covering Africa and Asia, with Citigroup, where she joined as a graduate associate, having graduated from Queens’ College Cambridge with a Masters in Management. Prior to that, she received a 1st Class Hons degree from King’s College, London, in Management and Economics. Shimi is an active member of the Young President’s Organization (YPO).
About Noor Sweid:
Ms. Noor Sweid is Managing Director of Strategy at Depa Limited, a Dubai-based public company, and one of the largest interior contractors worldwide, operating in 16 countries. Most recently, Noor has led and completed the Depa IPO, which marked the first private, UAE-based company to float on the Nasdaq Dubai, as well as a secondary GDR listing on the London Stock Exchange. Noor’s experience in developing strategies and executing visions, coupled with her finance background, makes her an integral part of the team at Depa.
Prior to joining the executive team of Depa and furthering the Company’s vision while leading the restructuring of over 2500 employees and growing the company to 8000 employees, Noor’s experiences were focused consistently in strategy and in finance, thus, leading the strategic and business developing growth of a company is a natural career path for her. Her career started at Charles Schwab Institutional Management in Boston, where she worked with some of the industry’s top investment managers in assessing and developing the investment portfolios of large institutions; and where she discovered her passion of financial management.
Noor continues to pursue the non-profit efforts and interests she is passionate about. She is the Middle East Chapter Head of 85 Broads, a global network of over 25,000 women. Additionally, she has recently launched ZenYoga (www.yoga.ae), a chain of yoga studios in Dubai that provides all types of yoga instruction for everybody. Noor’s belief in the health and life benefits of this practice have ensured each instructor is internationally certified with over 500 hours of training and has many years of teaching experience behind her.
Ms. Noor Sweid has Bachelors of Science degrees in Finance and Economics from Boston College and a Masters in Business Administration from the MIT Sloan School of Management.
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