Inside this issue
• Banks are increasingly focused on women
• In finance, getting a business started is the biggest obstacle
• Campaigners are looking to more liberal Muslim countries for inspiration - -
Economics is driving Arab women’s growing involvement in business, says Roula Khalaf.
Arab women suffer from lack of access to capital, writes Roula Khalaf.
Getting a business started is the single greatest challenge, says Andrew England.
Gulf women are learning to compete, writes Simeon Kerr.
The Financial Times list aims to tell the story of emerging role models. It is not designed as a guide to the most powerful or influential Arab businesswomen.
Randa Ayoubi is one of Jordan’s pioneers in multimedia software for education and started Rubicon in 1994, when rural poverty and the lack of teachers in villages was a big issue.
Azza Fahmy’s innovative jewellery has had a strong impact on both Egyptian public taste and on traditional jewellery-making.
Nahed Taher, the chief of Gulf One Investment Bank, has always been an advocate of female emancipation in the kingdom, arguing that Saudi Arabia will never compete globally if it keeps its women idle.
Empowerment needs to spread beyond the elite, says Roula Khalaf.
Multinational companies are recruiting and promoting Arab women as part of their diversity and equal opportunities programmes, says Fiona Symon.