The Sharjah Business Women Council (SBWC) has launched the first in a series of entrepreneurial workshops aimed at broadening Emirati women’s perspective on a diverse range of industry sectors they can invest in. Named the “Trendy Workshops”, the series will review the basic elements of business plan development and operations. The SBWC will partner with industry leaders who will facilitate the workshops and lend their expertise to the graduates and women entrepreneurs.
Commenting on the kick off of the workshops Her Excellency Ameera Abdelrahim Binkaram, Chairperson of the Sharjah Business Women Council Executive Committee said: “The “Trendy Workshops” are a series of professional forums aimed at encouraging fresh graduates and women entrepreneurs to widen the scope of industry sectors they can get involved with. By partnering with prominent figures and establishments locally and internationally, “The Trendy Workshops” will provide entrepreneurs with best practice and advice”.
Supported by the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Ruwad Establishment, Sharjah Ladies Club and Sharjah Tatweer Forum, the first of the “Trendy Workshops” series focused on the Food & Beverage (F&B) industry. Led by Thomas Klein International, the “Trendy F&B Workshop” provided participants with guidance on planning, running and developing small and medium F&B businesses including catering, fine dining restaurants, hip cafés, cake parlors and chocolatiers.
Daniel During, managing partner of Thomas Klein International, the hospitality, leisure and entertainment consultancy, who lead the workshop said: “Generally people think all it takes to open an F&B outlet is a chef and an interior designer, however it is the initial expense that drains their budget before they even start. Sharjah has a number of good restaurants but we aim to increase this number by working with the SBWC to provide young women entrepreneurs with the right kind of knowledge to penetrate the F&B sector.”
Marya Kamil, F&B manager at Sharjah Ladies Club presented the club’s experience in managing different outlets and provided participants with key tips to help them design their outlets to
cater to their target audience’s needs. Khalid Al Muqlad, Business Development Manager, Ruwad Establishment, highlighted the funding schemes available for entrepreneurs and how they can benefit from it to transform their ideas into reality.
“F&B outlets in Sharjah, particularly at Al Qasba, have recently shown signs of growth. The workshop is aimed at encouraging F&B SMEs to create their own concepts, and develop them into chains across the UAE and neighboring countries” concluded Binkaram.
At the end of the workshop and in recognition of her innovation and successful SME, Mai Faisal Al Qassimi, founder and owner of “Sugar Box”, was awarded the first “Trendy Star”. Mai started her trendy confectionary business in Al Qasba, Sharjah, creating her range of home -made delicious products, blending Middle Eastern taste with international standards and providing the UAE with a unique mix of flavors.
Around 30 percent of SMEs in the UAE are owned by women The SBWC is working closely with the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry to develop the framework for SMEs to flourish in the emirate. The growth of the SME sector is a big focus for the UAE, with The Ministry of Economy having launched a dedicated fund to support it earlier this year.
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