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Dtec Forum, Powered By Entrepreneur Middle East, To Look Into How COVID-19 Stimulated The MENA E-Commerce Sector Entitled "Realities of Retail in 2020: Offline to Online", the upcoming DTEC Forum, powered by Entrepreneur Middle East, will convene on Tuesday, December 8, 2020, from 3:00pm to 5:00pm (UAE time).

You're reading Entrepreneur Middle East, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.


The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has brought either significant disruption, or tremendous opportunities for entrepreneurs across the MENA region, with most of them trying to fall into the latter group. This attempt has seen both big and small retailers completely re-think their reliance on physical outlets and pivot to online platforms and delivery models, unveiling new insights and business strategies that will benefit the sector in the years to come.

With an aim to share some of these invaluable lessons with our audience, Dubai Technology Entrepreneur Campus (Dtec), a Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority-owned technology startup center, and Entrepreneur Middle East are dedicating their upcoming Dtec Forum, powered by Entrepreneur Middle East, to the lessons learned from the rapid growth of the e-commerce sector during COVID-19.

To join this online event on December 8, please register HERE.

Entitled "Realities of Retail in 2020: Offline to Online", the webinar will convene on Tuesday, December 8, 2020, from 3:00pm to 5:00pm (UAE time). It will be broadcasted via Holofair, a virtual event platform developed by Outreal XR, a Dtec startup that gamifies the event experience by creating an online 3D avatar-based event platform to bring online events to life.

Commenting on the Dtec Forum, Hans Christensen, Vice President of Dtec, said: "As the largest hub of its kind in the MENA region, Dtec is always looking to support its community of startups in keeping up with the latest trends and developments in their respective industries. In line with that objective, and amidst the social and economic disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic, we couldn't help but seek opportunities, one of which is the acceleration of digitalization in people's lives – including working from home, e-learning, and shopping online. Hence, we decided to gather retail entrepreneurs to share their learnings from 2020 and perhaps guide others as they navigate the new landscape."

The Forum is scheduled to kick-off with an opening address from Hans Christensen, followed by an interview with Edward Sabbagh, Managing Director – Middle East, Farfetch, a British-Portuguese online luxury fashion retail platform. Sabbah oversees the overall development of the Farfetch brand and business in the Middle East, which has so far included overseeing the launches of Farfetch's Arabic site and app, as well as its first local office in the region.

In a talk entitled "Digitizing the Luxury Experience", Sabbagh will provide an overview of how COVID-19 has had an impact on the luxury and fashion industry, both globally and across the MENA region, changing online buying habits, and what SMEs in the sector have learned from the bigger brands in the sector over the past few months.

The panel discussion - "Offline to Online – Taking Advantage of the E-Commerce Boom"- will feature Khalil Alami, CEO of Telr, an online payment processing gateway, Rayan Osseiran, founder, Shorages, an on demand storage and fulfillment provider, and Renaud de Gonfreville, CEO of Ziwo, a cloud contact center software startup. Alami, Osseiran, and de Gonfreville will analyze which opportunities the rapid growth of e-commerce due to the COVID-19 pandemic has brought to the sector's supporting businesses, such distribution partners, payment gateways and logistics providers.

Spanning more than 10,000 sqm over two locations, Dubai Technology Entrepreneur Campus is designed to support young technology entrepreneurs on their journey to success. As the largest tech hub of its kind in the region, it offers its startup and SME members more than just a space from which to run their business. With an in-house VC unit, a supportive community of like-minded tech entrepreneurs, access to a range of events, trainings, mentorship and networking opportunities it's a full business ecosystem.

To join the latest edition of Dtec Forum, powered by Entrepreneur Middle East, on December 8, please register HERE.

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