Shell Intilaaqah’s ‘Aspire and Inspire’ Programme Hones Talent of Omani Entrepreneurs
Shell Intilaaqah, in collaboration with the Public Authority for Small and Medium Enterprises Development (Riyada), successfully concluded its business support specialised courses. Over 190 participants from Muscat, Sohar, Nizwa and Salalah completed the ever-popular courses given their hands-on nature, providing participants with key skillsets to lead successful businesses. Certificates of completion were awarded to participants from Muscat at Riyada headquarters by Najwa Mansoor Al Kindi, Director of Shell Intilaaqah.
This year’s updated version of the courses introduced aspiring Omani entrepreneurs to the ins-and-outs of marketing, financial and human resource planning as well as product pricing strategy and managerial skills. Each course consisted of 12 days of intensive training. The four courses provided over 60 hours of interactive training to participants helping them to manage their start-ups successfully to ensure sustainability.
Commenting on the Shell Intilaaqah Aspire and Inspire programme is alumnus, Hamoud Al Amri, whose business Dukan Al Asal specialises in the production and marketing of Omani honey products, “The programme helped me develop short and long-term plans for my business. Since starting in 2016, we currently have two branches of our store and the third is almost ready for launch by end of this year. With the support of Shell Intilaaqah, we were able to raise the bar when it comes to our products’ quality standards, better market them on a larger scale including Muscat and Salalah International Airports.”
Commenting on the workshop, one of the participants Khulood bint Saif Al Ma’ashari, said, “The Aspire and Inspire programme provided me with the skills and ability to manage change in the business environment, which is one of the key challenges for any business owner, as well as, plan well and mitigate risks in the future. Ranging from marketing tips, finance management and human resource management approaches, I can confidently say, I am more prepared to tackle my business and overcome challenges.”
During the workshops, Aspire and Inspire’s team of qualified experts shared insights with participants on how to ensure the viability of any business. The experts also underscored the importance of a business plan in executing a strategy for starting a venture and the resources required for achieving business goals.
Also sharing his feedback on the courses, participant Saif bin Said Al Saidi, said, “The Aspire and Inspire workshop provided me with a variety of necessary tips and tricks on how to successfully launch my business. But, the greatest take-away from this course was gaining a greater insight about regulations, policies and how to apply the know-how of running a business into day-to-day operations.”
Worthy to mention that Shell Development Oman, represented by Shell Intilaaqah and “Riyada” are strategic partners and they jointly implementing a programme called ‘Aspire and Inspire’. This programme is a fully rounded enterprise development initiative that aims at supporting Omani entrepreneurs through the different stages of their business startups, starting from business ideas stage, to training, counselling and mentoring and business insolvency diagnostic support.
Shell began its downstream marketing operations in Oman in 1958 when the Shell Company of South Eastern Arabia - the forerunner of Shell Markets (Middle East) Limited – obtained trading rights from the Late Sultan Said bin Taimur. The fuel was initially imported on trading dhows, the drums were tied with a rope and floated ashore and then hand-rolled inland. All trading was carried out through a local agent.
When in 1958 Shell obtained a contract from PDO to supply fuel it was decided to build a depot at Saih al Mailah Bay (now known as Mina al Fahal). The department had two bulk tanks for motor gasoline and Gasol, a two paint bulk filling gantry, a go-down for lubricants, a drum filling gantry, a small depot office and a house.