After the events of Egypt inspired members of the Egyptian diaspora community to get involved with rebuilding the country, a group of business leaders came together to launch the first Egypt NEGMA (Networking, Entrepreneurship, Growth, Mobilization, & Action) Conference. The conference, which kicks off at the end of the week on March 24-25 at the MIT Media Lab in Cambridge, will address "Innovative Solutions for a Brighter Egypt."
"We started this conference after the Egyptian revolution," says conference co-founder Ahmed Mady, who is also a postdoctoral research fellow at the Harvard Stem cell Institute. "As Egyptians living abroad, we felt like we had to do something for our country. We wanted to unite our efforts, and that's how we came up with the idea to launch a conference that would bring entrepreneurs from Egypt together and allow them to pitch to investors to move their ideas into action."
As part of the conference, 10 finalists in NEGMA's "Impact Egypt! Competition" will compete for a cash prize and further incubation in Egypt. The finalists, who will be coming from the U.S., Canada, and Egypt, says Mady, will receive pitch training on the first day and then pitch to attendeers for 2 minutes each on the second day.
They will also gain access to high impact networks through NEGMA’s diaspora mentors; partners include TechWadi, Flat6Labs Nahdel El-Mahrousa, Google Ebda2 Initiative, Egyptians Abroad for Development,Egyptian-American Scientists and Engineers, and Endeavor Egypt.
With inspiring talks from speakers including Wael Fakharany, Google’s Middle East Regional Director, among others, the conference is mostly aimed at boosting the best ideas for sustainable development and social entrepreneurship in Egypt, while building a community. "The ultimate goal is to create a connection between entrepreneurs in Egypt and those in the diaspora. There are many talented people in Egypt that just haven't found the right avenues for support. We also aim to increase the interest in investing in the country; there is a lot of fear about investing right now, but we want to showcase the opportunities," says Mady.
Interested parties can learn more and register on the NEGMA site.