Looking for somewhere unique to set up a business? Egypt is one place to consider. Steps to privatize and deregulate the economy, along with the Central Bank of Egypt’s supervision of local and foreign banks in the country, have allowed Egypt to withstand the international economic turmoil easier than other countries.
If you know where the opportunities lie and where to bank, you can capitalize on this to make your business a success.
Business Banking in Egypt
When you’re setting up a business, you need business financing and a business account. International banks like HSCB are a great option because they provide all kinds of payment and cash management services that smaller banks in Egypt don’t. They can also offer you better terms and conditions on loans.
Where are the opportunities?
One of the main sectors where there’s considerable potential for success is the financial sector. Lack of consumer knowledge about products and services such as banking and insurance has created lots of opportunities due to a low penetration of the market.
So they’re just in the financial sector, then?
Not at all.
An expected population increase to 82.8 million people is pushing up demands for ICTs. And with more than half of the regional business community consisting of SMEs, the software market could be especially lucrative for anyone who can develop it, since smaller SMEs have problems securing access to credit from banks.
Meanwhile, training is a great business opportunity, in which regard the gas and oil industry contains lots of opportunities. Training aside, other opportunities can be found in onshore or offshore exploration, HSE services, field development and machinery, and capacity building in this sector.
Thanks to a shift in focus, education holds a similar wealth of opportunities. E-learning and English language tuition have become exceptional avenues as languages and the digital world become ever more important in the working world.
If you’re setting up a technical business or specialize in engineering project management, the environment and water sector has lots of business potential. The Egyptian Government wishes to provide water and sanitation services to 217 cities and 4,600 villages in Egypt. Your business could help.
Retail is the final sector. Demand and consumer interest in international brands, in value-added services and in quality products are all growing. Despite several international brands launching branches in Egypt, the retail sector is still not saturated.
Setting up a business is one thing. Doing business is another. Business professionals should respect the business culture of their location to keep potential clients or business partners onside. Here are some tips to help you do just that:
- Let your business partner or client offer their hand first before shaking hands
- Dress formally and keep visible jewelry out of view
- Make a polite greeting in Arabic
And here are some tips to avoid winding them up:
- Never rush the person — Egyptians take their time when doing business
- Don’t ask lots of questions about the other person’s family
- Avoid baring the soles of your shoe or crossing your legs — they’ll find this rude!
Knowledge is power, especially in business, so make the most of it to start a successful business in Egypt. Of course, it takes more than just knowing where the opportunities lie. You have to know how to do business. Being polite is part of this. Follow these tips and you’ll be thanking people for doing business with you much more.