Scopio met with the ambassador of Jordan — Dina Kawar — and Samer Asfour, the Director of New Technologies from the Royal Hashemite Court at 500 Startups in San Francisco. Here’s a little bit of what we learned.
Aumet, Order Circle and Scopio are current 500 Startups companies with Jordanian backgrounds. All of us are solving some unique problems and looking toward the future. Yesterday, we all met with Dina Kawar, the current ambassador of Jordan, and Samer Asfour. The overarching theme? The future of entrepreneurship.
We sat down to chat about our mission and message, current opportunities and the biggest challenges we’re facing. And with Scopio specifically, we talked about storytelling through the lens of real people. Scopio captures real moments and stresses the effect of media on our perception of the world. That’s a core issue for diplomats and in politics at large, too.
New opportunities were also at the core of this meeting. Scopio talked about partnering with the Jordanian Ministry of Tourism to show the wonders of Jordan (and its modernity, of course) in a more humanized and personal way.
The other 500 Startups groups with backgrounds in Jordan — with focal points on things like global healthcare and wholesale ordering — shared their personal stories. They’re on a road less traveled and it took a lot to get this far.
Jordan isn’t the only Middle-Eastern country looking into entrepreneurship, though. A recent trip to Dubai, UAE and Qatar showed us just how much politics intersects with entrepreneurship. These countries’ goals honed in on economic diversity and growth geared towards a younger population. And even though places like Dubai are intensely modern (just check out the Scopio gallery below), the internet is still a market that is virtually untapped.
Hundreds of millions of dollars are being allocated in different countries — including the US — to invest in new tech ideas, which is why Scopio also won $50,000 from Arch Grants, which revitalizes St. Louis and finds technical solutions to major world problems.
Support from these unconventional routes is really underrated, and governments like Jordan’s are looking at alternative ways to enhance and benefit local life and culture. Opportunities are bound to multiply, and 500 Startups and governments around the world realize that.
Here’s what we think: if you know a problem is important enough, now would be a good time to try to solve it. After all, Elon Musk tells us that “if something is important enough, even if the odds are against you, you should still do it.”
The conversation was inspiring to say the least, and a very important one. We need to shift toward open conversation. In addition, we also need to recognize the need for startups — especially those with social or political intents — to come together locally. This helps everyone grow on a global scale.
We are excited to grow as a part of the 500 Startups ecosystem and loved meeting the ambassador of Jordan Dina Kawar and Samer Asfour. Thanks for hearing us out, and we look forward to the future!
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