Algeria, Cross-border
#BarakabilityScience & TechnologySocial EntrepreneurshipYouth in Business

Business Lessons from Young Algerian Entrepreneurs

A power duo of innovative entrepreneurs have taken their idea to MIT Arab Startup Competition and are now on the final stages of voting for the GIST Tech-i Competition, which will allow them to pitch their project at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Kenya and enable them to receive necessary funding to get their idea off the ground. We follow up with them after their experience with the MIT competition and see how they plan to progress in the future.

1) How did you come up with the idea for your startup? Khatwa allows the users to charge their phone while walking. We are students in electrical and electronic engineering and we wanted to use our knowledge in order to benefit our community. We started working on this project but we weren’t really confident about it. It was just a technical project that we were practicing on. We had the opportunity to apply for the MIT EF pan-arab competition and that’s where the journey really begin for our venture. We believe that nothing is impossible, you just need to work for it.

2) What positive changes do you believe your startup can bring to the market? We have witnessed a large development in mobile technology and the internet, it has helped rapidly advanced societies like Algeria over the past decade, but the lack of available charging options and power infrastructure means that the impact mobile can have is still limited. And here’s where Khatwa comes in. It is ideal for anyone who want an infinite battery or doesn’t have access to power outside or power at all.

3) What is the most important part of teamwork?
Being in a team involves getting tasks done fast and efficiently but I believe that the core of team work is characterized by the communication. Communication within team members is really important it makes the work more fun. complementary skills between members are also very important.

4) What do you believe can help improve the infrastructure of the startup scene in the Arab World? These past years, I’ve noticed that there were an uprising in the Arab world in terms of youth entrepreneurship and I’m really glad that there are some success stories that we can hold on to in order to look at it in our own path towards our goals. I would like to see more improvements in terms of support and initiation to entrepreneurship and communication skills as well as funding opportunities from organizations.

To vote on the GIST Tech Competition page for Khatwa, go here. You can submit a vote until June 11! 

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