EY introduces Entrepreneurial Winning Women programme to MENA

15 June 2018 Consultancy-me.com

After ten years of successfully mentoring ambitious female business leaders across the globe, Ernst & Young has now introduced its Entrepreneurial Winning Women programme to the Middle East and North Africa.

Now covering 65 countries across every major region – and having welcomed 430 participants over the course of its ten years – EY’s Entrepreneurial Winning Women programme aims to support talented female entrepreneurs in realising their full potential. Designed to accelerate the growth of promising female-led enterprises, the year-long programme sees participants provided with customised mentorship through one-on-on guidance, networking and training opportunities, and access to the latest research on business strategy and practice.

A recent global survey of Entrepreneurial Winning Women alumnae found that their businesses had grown at an average annual compound rate of 35% since their participation, and had increased in head-count by an average of 166%. Further, nearly nine out of ten former participants say that the programme has had a positive impact on them as founders, while many note the increase in national exposure and greater confidence gained in their role as public figures. 53% said they will be expanding operations internationally in the coming year – nearly half for the first time.

The Big Four assurance, tax and advisory firm states that the programme is intended to help savvy women entrepreneurs who exhibit confidence, conviction, tenacity and acumen to break through the existing market barriers, with applications for the newly launched MENA edition open to founding CEOs (with at least 51% ownership) of locally-based businesses which are two or more years and have annual existing revenues higher than US$250,000 – and who can demonstrate the passion and desire to scale-up internationally.EY introduces Entrepreneurial Winning Women programme to MENA“EY is very proud to bring the Entrepreneurial Winning Women program to the MENA region. We know experienced role models and access to business-building networks are critical for women entrepreneurs and this program is designed to deliver that through an extensive ecosystem built by EY,” said Sheikha Al-Fulaij, MENA Program Sponsor and Assurance Partner with EY’s Kuwait office, adding that the initiative was part of the firm’s efforts “to accelerate the achievement of gender parity and see more women become global market leaders.”

In a recent report on female workforce participation in the GCC by The Boston Consulting Group, the strategy firm found that female senior leadership levels in the region fell dramatically short of international benchmarks, with the rate of 6 percent in Saudi Arabia for example comparing to a figure of 43.5 percent in the US. The disparity was even more pronounced at the board level; Bahrain, which had the highest ratio of women in senior roles (and recently played host to the Women Power Summit), recorded just the 1.7% share of women in the board-room.

Here, the EY programme seeks to address the lack of visibility for female leaders in the region among corporate executives, investors and the media, while looking to create an international network of elite businesswomen and role models for its participants and other aspiring female entrepreneurs – backed by the global firm’s vast trove of resources, which, in MENA, includes more than 6,000 professionals across 15 countries. Applications for the programme close on the 15th on August, with an orientation conference to be held in Dubai in October this year.


Saudi pharmacy chain Nahdi transforms with aid of two consultancies

11 April 2019 Consultancy-me.com

Saudi Arabia’s leading pharmacy retail chain Nahdi has undergone a recent transformation with the help of two consulting firms; Resilience& for a business process re-engineering project and Redbox Digital for an omnichannel commerce implementation.

With a vast network of outlets in 140-plus cities and villages across Saudi Arabia, the Jeddah-headquartered Nahdi Medical Company oversees the biggest retail pharmacy chain in the Kingdom – serving millions of customers every year. Stating a goal to remain at the forefront of innovation, Nahdi has recently undergone two transformation projects with the aid of consultancies Resilience& and Redbox Digital.

The former project, which commenced last year, has seen the team from management firm Resilience& partner with Nahdi’s Business Process Re-engineering leadership team to institute a more efficient and agile manner for serving its customers. For the strategic transformation, Resilience& among other activities assessed processes against best-practices and benchmarking tools and applied a performance review mechanism to aid with any future fine-tuning.

Founded in the UK in 2015 and with further branches in Egypt, the UAE, Oman, Kuwait, Morocco and Greece, Resilience& describes itself as a network of consulting firms and independent experts – among them; UAE-based principal partner Ahmed Ragab, who has 15 years of cross-sector consulting experience across the Middle East – including a brief stint as a deputy director with Baker Tilly in Kuwait; and senior manager for digital transformations Tamer Montase, a former manager at Ernst & Young.Saudi pharmacy chain Nahdi transforms with aid of two consultanciesMeanwhile, Nahdi has also seen an UX overhaul with the implementation of a complete omnichannel commerce experience across its retail stores and digital channels delivered by global digital commerce and creative design consultancy Redbox Digital – a leading global elite Magento partner in the Middle East. According to the firm, Nahdi experienced its highest ever site traffic and best basket size and conversion rates in the week following the launch.

Built on Magento Commerce Cloud and Magento Order Management (while integrating Nahdi’s existing back-office Oracle systems), Nahdi’s head of omnichannel and former Accenture management consultant Pawel Dabrowski described the implementation as an amazing achievement given its size and complexity. “There were so many elements to consider from mobile application and single sign-on to loyalty programmes and single customer view,” Dabrowski said.

“Being able to bring all these together required knowledge, skill, understanding of the wider eco-system and more importantly team-work. There were challenges along the way, as with any large-scale implementation, but Redbox’s technical understanding, flexibility and ability to swiftly solve complex issues was behind the project’s huge success. They have a long history in the region and an excellent reputation for delivering high-performing omnichannel solutions.”

Founded in 2004, Redbox has a regional hub in Dubai (established in 2013 and serving clients in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar) with further operations in the UK, US, Italy Australasia, South Africa and Mauritius – the digital consultancy having since its inception built up an impressive roster of clients including Universal Music, Sephora, AXA, Nespresso, The Body Shop and Abul Latif Jameel, the parent of lean management specialists Four Principles.

Elsewhere in the regional healthcare sector, Four Principles itself recently celebrated a total supply chain and procurement processes lean transformation project for the Sulaiman Al-Habib Medical Group – naming the company its inaugural Kaizen Awards’ winner – while specialist consultancy GE Healthcare Partners has just picked up its own award, being highly commended at the prestigious MCA awards in London for a transformation project in conjunction with the Dubai Health Authority.