When the pandemic started, many countries in the Middle East implemented pre-emptive measures to stave off the spread of the virus. Some states implemented dusk to dawn curfews, while others adopted social distancing measures to prevent the spread of the disease. The health crisis also saw a drop in tourist arrivals as flights were canceled in and out of the region. Oil prices also went down as demand for fuel evaporated.
But over a year after the pandemic started, the region started to recover. Even as its aviation and tourism industries continue to suffer, the real estate industry in the region saw significant growth in the region. This comes ahead of the 2022 FIFA World Cup, which will be held in Qatar. This makes the region a good place for entrepreneurs to start a business. Here are some tips that entrepreneurs can consider if they plan to start a business in the Middle East.
Look for a Local Partner
The first thing an entrepreneur should do is to look for a local partner. Having a local to work with allows foreigners to create a network in the region. But it is challenging to select a partner who can help them navigate the Middle Eastern market.
While many businesses in the region are ready to work with companies from other parts of the world, some are not too keen on the idea of working with a non-Middle Eastern company.
So, it is important to look for a business partner with whom an entrepreneur can easily work. The partner can help the entrepreneur to understand the culture and traditions of the region. This allows the entrepreneur to avoid issues when starting a business in the Middle East.
The entrepreneur should also make sure that the partner has the capabilities he is looking for. He should also create commercial synergy with the partner to increase the chances of success of the business. Additionally, the partner should be dynamic and flexible to ensure the pace of the growth of the business is fast.
The local partner should also have the expertise that the entrepreneur is looking for in the region. The entrepreneur should make sure of this so he will not waste time building a business in the Middle East.
Focus on Small Milestones
If the entrepreneur is not familiar with the region, he should focus on small milestones. He should start with smaller projects and gradually expand the business in the region. He should work with his local partner to be familiar with the nuances of the way people do business in the region.
If he plans to invest, he should avoid small mistakes that will spell the business’s downfall. One milestone that entrepreneurs can focus on when investing is opening an Islamic trading account at a reliable financial institution. Opening this type of account allows the entrepreneur to make investments in the region. With this account, the entrepreneur can earn passive income while building his business in the region.
Once the entrepreneur is familiar with the business nuances in the region, he can start focusing on bigger milestones and expand the business.
Build a Relationship with Executives
Working with executives of Middle Eastern companies is also a good way to increase the chances of working with a company in the region. And since these executives only work with people they can trust, entrepreneurs should build a personal relationship with these executives.
They should communicate with them to accelerate the growth of their business. While Arabic is the main language in the region, English is also used by businessmen in the Middle East. So, entrepreneurs who are still learning the Arabic language can use English to gain the trust of top Middle Eastern executives.
But it does not hurt if the entrepreneur uses a couple of Arabic phrases while talking with these executives. This will show that the entrepreneur respects the language and culture of the region. It will also enhance his relationship with the locals.
Work with a PR Company to Reach Top Executives
Since reaching top Middle Easter executives is challenging, entrepreneurs can work with a local PR company. They should make sure the PR professional has contacts within the company that the entrepreneur wants to work with.
Using their contacts, the entrepreneur can connect with the top executives and present his proposal to the company. Then, he can start building a personal relationship with these executives to strengthen his bond with the company and increase his chances of success.
The Middle East offers a lot of potential for entrepreneurs looking for something new when starting a new business during the pandemic.