Caroline Fattal Fakhoury took part as a speaker in the NAWF Women Entrepreneurs (NAWF 2016) in its eighth edition held on 11 May 2016 at the Phoenicia Hotel in Beirut.
Under the main theme “Empowering a new generation of Arab women entrepreneurs”, the Forum brought together more than 400 participants from over 25 countries including high-profile speakers, entrepreneurs, business leaders, business and government executives, financiers and venture capitalists in addition to incubators and accelerators as well as other players in the entrepreneurship ecosystem in the Arab countries.
The 3-stages’ forum shed the light on the ways of empowering women through innovation and entrepreneurship that should imperatively be coupled with institutional mechanisms and high-level collaboration to bolster their work and projects. It therefore appraised the road toward putting a business on a sustainable growth path, and the needed financial solutions to support growth. The participants also discussed how the digitally empowered generation is changing the way we do business and accessing new markets and segments traditional businesses are still lagging to serve.
NAWF wrote to Caroline: “It’s a great pleasure to have you among our distinguished speakers in the session “Entrepreneurship Journeys” during the 8th NAWF Women Entrepreneurs (NAWF 2016)”
During this session pioneer entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs shared their insights into their journey: the ups and downs, the challenges they faced and how they encounter and beat daily difficulties and most importantly their tips to success and how they are supporting fellow entrepreneurs…
The speakers on the panel were:
Mrs. Caroline Fattal, Founder, Stand for Women, Senior Vice-President and Board Member, Fattal Holding
Dr. Hiba El Hajj, Assistant Professor, Cell Biology/Parasitology, Faculty of Medicine, AUB
Mr. Ziad Abi Chaker, Chief Executive Officer, Cedar Environmental
Ms. Rita Deek, Founder, MomAdvice
Ms. Rania Barghout, Founder, R*stars Talent Management, Producer & Presenter at MBC moderated the panel.
Caroline’s full speech is in attachment. By the end of her speech, she launched Stand for Women her new initiative:
“ Lately, I had a new spark and decided to follow another of my dreams and to create “Stand for Women”, a platform that will advocate for women empowerment and gender equality in the workforce in the Middle East.
A lot is being done about the matter in the US and Europe: quotas, women on boards and in Excos, equal pay, regularly make the headlines. And I strongly feel that the same should be done in our region, for a more prosperous economy, more job creation and ultimately more peace.
I am at the same time thrilled and anxious to go over again through the entrepreneurship journey: the gremlins, the doing it all myself, the solitude at times, and all the other challenges. Even speaking about it puts me on an edge.
But I am convinced that more women in the workforce are needed in the region and that it needs everybody’s help, women, men, corporations, governments and society in general. So I will thrive. I will activate my own network: other leaders, communities, NGOs… I also need your help and support in this new exciting step!
I have made a conscious decision that no matter what are the hardships and the constraints I am faced with in life, I always have a choice and I have to bounce back.
I feel privileged being able to evolve and grow into new dimensions, thinking of new ventures; entrepreneurship needs us to dream, believe in something important, chase the dream but it also needs support: expertise, finance, and a core team who believes in your idea after you! “
The forum was organized by Al-Iktissad Wal-Aamal Group and Al Hasnaa Magazine and featured interactive sessions, hands-on workshops as well as one-to-one networking opportunities.