Challenges that spark ideas: GE's CMO meets MENA startups, discusses problems and solutions

In January 2015, entrepreneurs from the Middle East and North Africa met with Beth Comstock, GE's Chief Marketing Officer, at Masdar City in Abu Dhabi.

The meeting took the form of a roundtable discussion, the goal of which was information sharing between GE and the MENA startup ecosystem.  

The entrepreneurs who attended work in fields that focus on advanced technologies, ranging from the energy sector to big data, industrial internet, agritech, and the internet of things. Through the roundtable, they got the opportunity to learn about GE’s focus and to trade insights and concerns with Comstock.

Comstock kicked off the discussions with a macro view of the 130-year-old company, saying that the future is at the junction of the digital and the physical, where sensors provide continuous feedback, adding that the innovation landscape is changing so rapidly that a whole new approach is needed.  

Comstock also mentions that GE is looking to partner in several sectors including software and analytics, energy, healthcare, and advanced manufacturing. “We need to partner with government, other companies, and startups,” she says.

Watch the video above to get to know more about the startups who participated in the roundtable and how GE is working on staying ahead of the competition in four main areas: finding creative people and the right partners, maintaining a balance between purpose and profit, and addressing global issues at a local level.


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