The ‘Enterprise Challenge Qatar’ 2016, a competition designed to develop the spirit of entrepreneurship amongst young people, has recognised the winners of the Schools Grand Final Competition. Ahmed bin Hanbal School claimed the first prize at this year’s final round of the business simulation and business pitch competition between 25 independent and international high schools in Qatar.
The winning team took home a prize of QR 10,000 to support funding their business idea and its implementation within their school campus.
Second place was awarded to Al Guieria Girls Secondary School while Umm Hakim Girls School were awarded third place.
The ‘Enterprise Challenge Qatar’ programme has different tiers for high school and university students, and is made up of two parts comprising: the Ethical Business Challenge, which tests participants’ ability to balance the economic, environmental and social performance of their company; and the Business Simulation element which familiarises students with general business concepts from inception through to trading, finance, sales, marketing and production.
This year, to make the competition more challenging for school students, the ‘business pitching of ethical and original business ideas’ was introduced to the programme. This additional aspect of the programme saw the six finalist teams pitching their business concepts to a panel of expert judges, showing how they would start-up a small profitable business within their schools.
Commenting on the event, Saleh Al Khulaifi, Board member of Bedaya Center – Head of Business Development at Qatar Development Bank, said:
‘Entrepreneurship is the future for Qatar, and at Bedaya we believe that encouraging young people to consider entrepreneurship will help create a thriving private sector and ensure its sustainability for future generations.’
Mohammed Abu Jbara, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Manager at Qatar Shell, said:
Qatar Shell is very proud to have supported ‘Enterprise Challenge Qatar’ for four consecutive years. The programme continues to expand and increase in popularity. Over the past three years, it has reached more than 1,200 students, and this year alone the programme reached a further 1050 students, almost doubling the total number of participants over four years.’
‘I would like to thank our partners Bedaya, the Ministry of Education and Higher Education, Qatar Centre for Voluntary Activities, and Mosaic, without whom we would not have been able to achieve such a positive impact.’
Last year, Qatar Shell signed a memorandum of understanding with the Ministry of Education to support Enterprise Challenge Qatar, and promote the competition in independent and private secondary schools in Qatar. In addition to this agreement, Qatar Shell partnered with the Qatar Volunteer Center to engage more volunteers in training students.
Reema Abukhadija, Director of Educational Supervision Office, Ministry of Education and Higher Education said:
We are very delighted to have partnered with Qatar Shell to spread the ‘Enterprise Challenge Qatar’ in more schools across Qatar. Our support to this initiative stems from our belief in the importance of nurturing the culture of entrepreneurship among students, enabling them to acquire the necessary business skills to face the challenges of the 21st century.’
Aisha Al Kuwari, Chairperson of the Qatar Center for Voluntary Activities, said:
We are proud to support the ‘Enterprise Challenge Qatar’ Programme, by contributing volunteer mentors for schools and universities. The programme encourages the volunteering concept in our local communities by training and encouraging an increasing number of volunteers to join the ‘Enterprise Challenge Qatar.’
In preparation for the competition more than 100 Qatari volunteers, the majority of whom are Qatari nationals, have delivered coaching sessions on core business concepts. The teams’ performances as businesses were evaluated using a computer-based business programme, which simulated a competitive marketplace over a three-year period. Students also received mentoring on ethical business, which tests participants’ ability to balance the economic, environmental and social performance of their company.
The Enterprise Challenge competition was created by Mosaic, a UK-based not for profit organisation established by His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales in 2007. ‘Enterprise Challenge Qatar’, is delivered in cooperation between Qatar Shell and the Bedaya Centre.