This article was first published by Forbes Middle East on 20th September , 2016 and is written by Kamal Hassan, Founder at The Cribb.
Walk down a street in the Middle East, and you’re going to see a LOT of falafel shops. To a certain degree, this is because a lot of us like falafels. But that’s not the real reason there are so many.
In reality, this is the easiest business opportunity to copy. Someone who wants to be an entrepreneur — but who doesn’t want to think that hard about what people really need — simply looks around and finds the easiest successful business model that he can copy.
Hence, we end up with so many falafel shops. This is definitely not the path to true innovation.
Government officials and leading investors need to think about the right way to connect this capital with entrepreneurs who can compete effectively with the world’s most aggressive innovators.
We were happy to host Somali Expat Forum at The Cribb last week. This is a platform created for and by Somali Professionals, Entrepreneurs and University Student to connect, engage and share valuable experiences, ideas and knowledge. The objective of this group is to support and guide Somali professionals and University students finding jobs through referrals, mentorship and sharing relevant market intelligence in the UAE & Qatar.
Most business innovation is incremental: a startup or established company tries to improve - but not reinvent - an established industry practice. They take an existing product or service and make it incrementally better, faster, or cheaper. But full-stack startups seek to completely replace a practice or even an entire industry; their goal is to offer a complete end-to-end solution that is transformational, a true breakthrough.