Enterprising ideas in the spotlight at Biban 2018 in Jeddah

Makkah Gov. Prince Khalid Al-Faisal inaugurating the Biban convention on Wednesday. (Photo supplied)
Updated 02 November 2018
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Enterprising ideas in the spotlight at Biban 2018 in Jeddah

  • Biban aims to encourage new enterprises and entrepreneurs to launch projects and establish themselves in the market

JEDDAH: The fourth annual Biban convention for entrepreneurs, innovators, startups and investors began on Wednesday at Jeddah’s International Exhibition and Convention Center.

The convention, which is being held in Jeddah for the first time, is organized in collaboration with Monsha’at, the Kingdom’s Small and Medium Enterprises General Authority, which aims to support and develop the sector in the Kingdom. 

It was opened by Makkah Gov. Prince Khaled Al-Faisal, Deputy Gov. Prince Abdullah bin Bandar bin Abdul Aziz and Dr. Majid Al-Qassabi, the minister of commerce and investment.

During the main panel discussion titled “Investment and Trade Incentives in Jeddah,” Al-Qassabi said: “The ministry is working very hard to strengthen e-commerce in a way that protects the rights of all parties involved, as well as the principle of governance.”

When asked whether the ministry would give licenses to leading companies in e-commerce, a relatively new field for the Kingdom, he said that the ministry welcomes the idea, especially after granting Noon.com — the online retail platform offering an array of products, from smartphones to biscuits — a license to do business in the Kingdom.

The topic is one of the eight key ways in which Biban is offering to support entrepreneurship and SMEs, through e-commerce, which is looking to provide ways to support existing online stores in Saudi Arabia, as well as those in the making.

Other solutions included Monsha’at, which showcases successful initiatives by the authority and introduces new businesses to consumers. Additionally it offers SMEs a platform for showcasing their products and services, targeting those who wish to delve into business, refining their creative ideas and guiding  them to the right tools to develop their ideas. It also offers workshops to help existing SMEs to expand.

During a panel discussion, the stars of “Shark Tank” — a TV show that gives young entrepreneurs a chance to present their ideas to some of Saudi Arabia’s leading businessmen and women in the hopes of persuading them to invest — fielded questions from the audience. Describing the show, one fan said: “Every episode is like a course in entrepreneurship.”

As the business gurus discussed some of the show’s success stories, Makarim Batarji, president of Gold’s Gym chain in Saudi Arabia, said: “We can all see the people interested in entrepreneurship gathered here to learn how to make their ideas into successes.” He added that this demonstrates the importance of such events.

Albatoul Alhoraibi, the CEO of GCC Consulting, which is participating in the convention, said: “We’re collaborating with the Small and Medium Enterprises General Authority to offer an extensive creative program, which is usually given in five days but is being covered in five hours to meet the visitors’ needs here. Through the program, attendees will be able to learn the methodology of design thinking and apply it accordingly.”

Biban aims to encourage new enterprises and entrepreneurs to launch projects and establish themselves in the market by examining the tools and project ideas needed to find and attract investors.

Biban runs until Nov. 3.


Civil service ministry launches national training program for public sector employees

Updated 48 min 11 sec ago
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Civil service ministry launches national training program for public sector employees

  • The “National Program for Rehabilitation and Training of Human Resources Personnel and Leaders in Government Agencies” which aims to expand the skills of government personnel
  • The training program is in line with the Saudi Vision 2030

JEDDAH: A national program aimed to train public sector employees in the field of human resources management has been inaugurated by the Ministry of Civil Service on Sunday.

The “National Program for Rehabilitation and Training of Human Resources Personnel and Leaders in Government Agencies,” which aims to expand the skills of government personnel, is in line with the country’s Vision 2030, according to the ministry.

“The Ministry of Civil Service will spare no effort in carrying out the roles entrusted to it to advance administrative development, including the modernization of the working environment in the public sector,” said Minister of Civil Service Suleiman bin Abdullah during the inauguration.

The program will explore best practices in human resources management in the public sector, and will discuss the basic principles of the employee life cycle. It will also train employees on methodologies of workforce planning, how to motivate employees to achieve their career objectives, how to foster a culture of group work, as well as highlight the role of digital technology in human resource.

Only Saudi nationals who have a college degree are eligible to join the program.

Government agencies will nominate the eligible employees, who will then be enrolled in a five-day course on human resource, where their abilities to obtain a certificate from UK-based Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development will be assessed. Successful candidates will finish a one-year training module, consisting of classroom and on-site activities.