Joy Ajlouny is an e-commerce industry professional whose influence in business and entrepreneurship has spanned the globe.
Joy is the co-founder of Fetchr, a Silicon- Valley backed Technology Company based in Dubai aimed at solving the “no-address” problem hindering growth in emerging markets. Fetchr uses patented technology allowing people to use their mobile phone’s GPS location as their address. Fetchr is the first start-up in the Middle East to be funded by a top venture capital firm in Silicon Valley. Joy, on behalf of Fetchr, was on the cover of Forbes Magazine in the Middle East, which named Fetchr #1 startup in the region. The company has raised $52 million in investment, including a $41 million series B round in May 2017. Prior to Fetchr, Joy founded Bonfaire, an e-commerce discovery platform for luxury footwear and accessories. Bonfaire was acquired in 2013 by fashion e-commerce giant Moda Operandi, owned by LVMH and Condé Nast.
Donna Benton launched the ENTERTAINER in 2001 to make Dubai’s dining and leisure venues more affordable for its residents and drive footfall to the growing number of world-class outlets. The ‘always buy one get one free’ model was designed to be mutually beneficial to both customers and merchants.
Benton built the business alone in the first few years – managing corporate legalities, recruiting merchants, overseeing printing and production and even selling the books herself. Word of mouth drove strong book sales and redemptions grew rapidly. From 2008, Benton expanded to the GCC and then into Asia, South Africa and Europe, whilst also expanding her product offering to include spas, salons, fitness and hotel accommodation.
With the launch of the award-winning ENTERTAINER app in 2013, the company has successfully transitioned from a print publication to a data-driven digital business, with a burgeoning B2B customer loyalty business and brand new products targeting the tourism and travel markets.
Ibrahim Colak is the core founder and current Chief Executive Officer of mrUsta. Prior to launching mrUsta in 2014 with three other co-founders, Ibrahim spent the best of the past two decades in leading roles in engineering and marketing for global brands such as Vestel, Nokia, and Microsoft.
His core strength as a problem-solver for Nokia lead to the development of mrUsta, a company with the aim to solve the headache of customers trying to connect to the right service provider in the UAE and beyond.
His role at the helm of mrUsta has not gone without attracting attention, having been nominated for ‘Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2014’, ‘Business Excellent Leadership Award’, and as testament to his vision, mrUsta was nominated for ‘Startup of the Year’ in 2016. In addition, mrUsta was awarded ‘Life-Admin App of the Year’, also in the same year.
Ibrahim and mrUsta have also become favorites with the media, having been featured in CNN, The National, Arabian Business, Entrepreneur Middle East, Inc. Arabia, and other leading international and regional news platforms.