Chris Khalifa at Global Entrepreneurship Summit 2017
Chris Khalifa, Endeavor Egypt Entrepreneur and Founder and CEO of Zooba, was one of nine entrepreneurs from Egypt attending the annually held Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) held this year in Hyderabad, India from November 28-30, 2017.
GES is the preeminent annual entrepreneurship gathering that convenes emerging entrepreneurs, investors and supporters from around the world, serving as a crucial platform that connects governments and the private sector to enable showcasing of projects, exchange of ideas and championing of new investment opportunities.
Now in its eighth edition, this year’s GES was co-hosted by the Governments of the United States of America and India in Hyderabad, bringing together 1500 emerging entrepreneurs, investors and key ecosystem players from 150 countries for two days and a half of networking, workshops and mentorship sessions, with special focus on supporting women entrepreneurs and fostering global economic growth as part of this year’s theme “Women First, Prosperity for All”. From Egypt, the delegation also included the entrepreneurs behind Fustany, LED Cube, Entreprenelle, Injaz and Techne Summit.
“It is incredibly inspiring to see what was happening in different ecosystems around the world”, said Chris as he reflected on his experience at the summit.
GES 2017 gives entrepreneurs the opportunities to pitch their businesses to potential investors and partners, exploring innovative ideas, products and services that could transform societies. With innovation at the heart of entrepreneurship, GES 2017 also extended its focus on uncovering the evolution and impact of technology in high-growth industries: Healthcare and Life Sciences, Digital Economy and Financial Economy, Energy and Infrastructure, and Media and Entertainment.
“I was already going there thinking about the importance of technology and how we can develop our technology as a company. This trip cemented that you cannot be in any form of business without thinking about technology,” remarked Chris, seeing the importance of technology as the highlight of the event.
Through continued technological advancements and with access to networks, talent and smart capital, entrepreneurs can economically contribute by creating new jobs, increasing productivity and improving quality of life for societies around the world. Playing an integral role in supporting a country’s economic growth, GES 2017 shed light on the roles of governments in strengthening and fostering entrepreneurial ecosystems.
“It was also interesting to see India on a national level prioritize entrepreneurship and innovation in general with a clear plan, a plan to nurture [the startup industry]”, Chris continues.
Chris founded Zooba, an award-winning restaurant that offers Egyptian traditional ‘street food’ by adding a contemporary and gourmet twist, in 2012 starting with three branches that grew into six branches throughout Cairo. Today, under Chris’s leadership Zooba is looking at international expansion taking its model beyond Egypt.
Chris was selected as an Endeavor Entrepreneur in 2014 after successfully passing Endeavor’s 54th International Selection Panel, and was recently recognized at Endeavor Egypt’s Mentor Awards among a cohort of Endeavor Entrepreneurs for their exceptional support to other emerging and budding entrepreneurs.