Potential.com's SME Empowerment Program Aims To Support SMEs Digitize Their Businesses And Benefit From Free Resources
Led by the social enterprise Potential.com, the campaign brings together Aramex, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Cisco, Schneider Electric and World Free Zone Organization.
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SME Empowerment Program (SMEEP) is a newly launched initiative that aims to support small and medium businesses in digitizing their businesses and operations across the MENA region.
Led by social enterprise Potential.com, the campaign brings together Aramex, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Cisco, Schneider Electric, and World Free Zone Organization for this initiative, which will offer small to medium business owners with free resources, insights, and services to navigate the post-COVID-19 era.
With SMEEP, SMEs can utilize and access video-based courses to create their digitization strategy plans, whilst collecting points. Points will allow them to unlock special offers, such as free expert sessions on relevant topics. Users can access courses on digital marketing, building an online presence, funding and investment, as well as managing cash flow, negotiation skills, starting a blog online, sales techniques, accounting tips, and launching a podcast. The platform will also help SMEs to network with others in a pan-regional online community, to support collaboration and sharing of advice and insights.
Potential.com founder and CEO Shadi Banna commented on the significance of supporting SMEs to prioritize digitization efforts, which will be greatly helped by the program's partners. "Our goal is to empower over one million businesses in the first 12 months of this initiative, and I encourage more firms and governments to get involved. The more we do now, the stronger our economies will be, and the greater the opportunity for job creation in the months and years ahead."
SMEs can also avail a number of resources from the program's partners. Faris Muqdadi, Global Director – Transactional Account Manager at Aramex noted the company's eagerness to support SMEs, saying, "We have been very keen since inception to facilitate access to various logistical services and solutions for SMEs from different industries, so that we can actively contribute to their growth and development process, and help them compete not only locally, but at a global scale."
Through the program, startups can also avail Amazon Web Services' Activate program to help them learn about the full benefits of cloud computing. AWS Activate will provide a variety of resources such as AWS credits, training, mentorship, and business and technical support. Cisco and Schneider Electric will also provide additional resources to SMEs.
To boost its reach to SMEs, the initiative is bringing together partnerships with governments, chambers and multilateral organizations such as World Free Zone Organization to bring the program to various communities around the world. According to its release, over the next few months, as governments join the program, the platform will be customized per individual countries and sectors to match with available resources and support programs in those countries.
SMEs are invited to join the platform for free on the website.