Jordan’s Entrepreneurship Week Kicks Off With Interesting Sessions.

19 Nov, 2009

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Our friends at QRCE along with other partners have organized an entrepreneurship week. The week started this Sunday with interesting speakers including Joi Ito CEO creative common and early investor in Twitter, Reid Hoffman founder and CEO of LinkedIn , Mitchell Baker Chairwoman of Mozilla Foundation,, Laith Al-Qaem CEO, Arabian Business Consultants for Development, Sami Shalabi team leader of Friend connect at Google and Habib Hadad cofounder of Yamli.

Unfortunately I was not able to attend as I was in Dubai via an invitation from Nokia. I wish though I could attend, as the topics of the event looks interesting and I wanted to ask Reid the founder of linkedin if he has better justification for Linkedin blocking Sudan than what his communication director told AC before.

The event which is still in ongoing started with a reception , forum and speed networking, sessions for kids and a market place.

During the forum and the reception speakers discussed many topics that revolve around entrepreneurship, in his part Emile Cubeisy managing director of I V Holding, the most active venture capital firm in the region, stated that it is important to build an ecosystem to fund entrepreneurs, which will ultimately benefit Jordan and the region.

Japanese VC, Joi Ito spoke about how the Internet has created a huge reduction in the risk that entrepreneurs take when starting a company, because internet-based technology resources have reduced start up and overhead costs. He also compared the culture of the Middle East to that of Japan, in terms of risk-aversion and fear of failure due to societal pressures around shame, and the necessity of moving away from “wasta” based power.

The American open source guru, Mitchell Baker spoke about the open source approach to product design and openness and transparency in running a business. In addition, she addressed the reactions she encountered when she started the Mozilla project- people told her she was crazy competing against Microsoft’s 98% market share.

Entrepreneur turned VC, Reid Hoffman – “entrepreneurship is like jumping off a high cliff and assembling an airplane on the way down. Financing is an updraft; it will give you more time, but you still need to build a plane or you will crash.” He gave other nuggets of advice to would-be entrepreneurs.

Full event schedule can be found here .

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