This weekend, AUI President Bensaid and Chief Entrepreneurship Officer Bartlett hosted 22 mentors and investors in AUI’s second Entrepreneurship Weekend. The weekend included our unique “Speed Mentoring” event that invited 93 students from 33 teams to receive one-on-one mentoring from these 22 experts, plus Workshops on selling, business plans, marketing and financing led by experts. The weekend began with Inspiration Talks from 7 Alumni entrepreneurs to inspire AUI students seeking to launch and scale businesses.
During the Award Ceremony, these mentors and investors awarded over 100 KHDS to 14 startup businesses created by 25 AUI students. The ideas ranged from creating a unique, healthy beef jerky to an online aggregator of douane-seized products to scaling existing businesses such as online discount products, custom cake sales, and gas distribution. The mentors were successful entrepreneurs in Morocco who provided advice, mentoring, and awards of expense payments for continuing the projects to prototyping, MVP (minimum viable product), and scaling to new markets/customers.
The largest Award for expense payments of 18,500 dhs for “Most Impressive Investment” went to Annarabic, a translation software company that was first mentored in AUI’s Spring Speed Mentoring sessions and has continued growth. The student owners are Inass Benjala, Ali Jaafari, Ahmed Jaafari, and Youssef Lambarki El Allioui.
The Mentors said “The Annarabic business is an innovation that has outstanding potential because the team listens to the advice given last Spring, has grown, and now just needs more customers to expand. We are impressed with their sales so far and want to help them continue to grow.”
The cash awards for expense reimbursement will provide winning student teams the funds to continue growing their ideas and businesses. The cash awards were generously donated this year by Dachser Logistics, Devoteam, HoplaTours, StudyLix, Oulmes, and four anonymous angel investors.
Other mentors donated valuable in-kind gifts: the marketing firm, DaBuzz! owned by Dana Al Mubaidin Adnani a Communications and Public Relations Consultant, awarded two teams pro bono consulting to help with public relations and marketing to expand their sales. The unique athletic club, CasaCross Fit, owned by AUI Alumni Amine Berrada, donated his sites to be POS (point of sale) outlets.
Here are all the Entrepreneurship Awards were given during Entrepreneurship Weekend:
- Most Impressive Investment for 18,500 dhs to Annarabicoperated by Inass Benjala, Ali Jaafari, Ahmed Jaafari, and Youssef Lambarki El Allioui.
- Most Passionate Project (Already) IN the Market for 9500 dhs to Easy, operated by Wissal Bidane
- Most Operational with Sales for 7500 dhs to ThinkGreenoperated by Nada Bennani
- Most Potential for Win-Win for 6000 dhs to Your Favorite Memory, started by Meriem Kaanoune, Nour Lhamzaoui, and Aya Latahy.
- Best Attitude for 4500 dhs to Clean Plate Club started by Salma Aboulfoutouh, Sarah Belhiah, Louis Chapuy, William Diesel, Yasmine El Bachiri and Nour Lhamzaoui,
- Best Online Business for 4000 dhs to Bentooperated by Malika Bounaga.
- Most Likely to Be a REAL Business for 3000 dhs - plus pro bono consulting from DaBuzz! toMazadistarted by Abdelmoujib Chouhbi
- Award for Quickest to Get to Market for 2500 dhs plus a free POS (point of sale) distributor through Casa CrossFit locations to koul'ou'mchi BEEF JERKY started by Taha Chief Khalifi
- Most Needed in the Future for 2500 dhs to Findyoperated by Abdellah Benmekhlouf
- Most Needed Now for 2500 dhs to Paws started by Nada El Amiri and Kenza Serghini
- Most Passionate Idea for 2500 dhs plus pro bono consulting from DaBuzz! to Wanni Camp, started by Mana Mninou
- Best Fit for the Market for 2500 dhs to Fit Me Now started by Hamza Maddah
- Most Universal and Replicable Idea for 2500 dhs to Run Buddy started by Yassine Zniber El Mouhabbis
- Best Positioned for Growth for 2500 dhs for Bs MEK Energyoperated by Abderrahmin Hamidine
The Entrepreneurship Weekend was created by the Office of Employability and Entrepreneurship alongside the Student-Led Incubator StartUp Olympus to provide Inspiration, Mentorship, and Funding/Award projects to encourage and equip students to continue with entrepreneurial ventures while at AUI and beyond.
The 22 expert mentors including 12 alumni that mentored at AUI for the weekend were:
- Othmane Bekkari
- Nicolas Klotz
- Yassir Zeghari
- Sana El Ouali
- M'Hamed Chraibi
- Tayeb Sbihi
- Zouheir Lakhdissi
- Aziz Benslimane
- Karim Benabdejlil
- Omar Cherkouai
- Amine Berrada
- Ossama Mokssit
- Mohamed Zin El Abidine
- Dana Al Mubaidin
- Ahmed Lahlou
- Almaz Sandy
- Hamza Cherkaoui
- Rachid Moulay El Rhazi
- Reda Berrada
- Laila Lebbar
- Salim Daima
- Naoufel Jellal