Zubair Small Enterprises Centre (Zubair SEC) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with leading global provider of logistics and transportation solutions, Aramex Muscat LLC, to collaborate within their areas of expertise towards supporting Omani entrepreneurs and owners of small businesses in the Sultanate.
With the presence of Ziyad Mohammed Al Zubair, Member of the board of director at The Zubair Corporation and a number of top management executives from both sides, the MoU was signed at The Zubair Corporation headquarter in Athaiba by Mr C S Badrinath, CEO of The Zubair Corporation, and Mr Raji Hattar, Chief Sustainability and Compliance Officer at Aramex.
Commenting on the MoU, Ziyad Mohammed Al Zubair, said, “This partnership comes in line with the strategy that Zubair SEC has adopted since its establishment a year ago to build synergies and partnerships with organisations and initiatives that aim at supporting the Small Enterprises sector; thus the Centre would act as a link between small business owners and social responsibility programmes designed for empowering this vital sector.”
He added, “One of the main areas of strength for Zubair SEC is that it resides within a conglomerate of multi-sectorial companies with their wide reach, vast expertise, and rich network of partners and ventures. This not only brings diverse business expertise to Zubair SEC’s members but also channels, opportunities, and collaborations that would enrich the centre’s offerings and support to Omani entrepreneurs. The Centre’s members can benefit from various services offered through such partnerships that the Centre has initiated since its establishment, as many members have already enjoyed such added value. As such, partnering with Aramex brings yet another platform of services and value to Zubair SEC’s members that would keep them abreast of latest business and sustainability practices in a practical manner.”
On his part, Mr Raji Hattar, said, “We have always believed that businesses can mobilize change and play a significant role in community development by empowering SMEs and nurturing entrepreneurship. We have ongoing programmes in most locations of our operations that provide entrepreneurial ecosystems, training, mentorship where people not only receive practical know-how but are also exposed to innovative solutions and creative ideas to help them develop the skills they need to succeed. We are very pleased to be partnering with the Zubair Group to help Omani entrepreneurs create their own opportunities.”
According to the MoU, Aramex Oman will extend commercial support to members of Zubair SEC through preferential rates for the first year provided the member commits to reach an agreed-upon level of business with Aramex. Aramex will also help members structure their supply chain activities where needed and train and monitor members to enhance their capacity. Capacity development will be extended through several methods, including access to free online training programmes relating to their lines of businesses, and provided through Aramex’ partnerships with several regional and international online platforms; organised a yearly conference with multi-stakeholder attendees to provide online sessions and networking platforms for Zubair SEC members; and mentoring programmes managed by Aramex employees and that cater to the needs of SMEs.
Aramex will also provide Zubair SEC’s members with advisory support in the area of sustainability and compliance. In partnership with the United Nations Global Compact local networks and the Global Reporting Initiative, Aramex will help Zubair SEC’s members with the integration of sustainability and corporate responsibility practices in their business processes. Group workshops on best practices will be available to members that request them. On its part, Zubair SEC will work together with Aramex on developing further programmes to empower and support the small enterprises sector in Oman and create value-adding synergies to the Centre’s direct members and entrepreneurship in its wider scope.
Zubair SEC is one of the initiatives which emanated from The Zubair Corporation’s Social Responsibility strategic vision towards the Omani society. The vision reflects the corporation’s belief in the importance of small enterprises (SEs) in enhancing the national economy and contributing to sustainable socio-economic development. The centre comprises a team of socially engaged and business savvy advisors who put all effort to contribute to leveraging the Omani community through equipping and enabling entrepreneurs and start-ups to grow with their businesses in a sustainable and responsible manner. Since its launch in 2013, Zubair SEC has joined to its membership 70 small businesses and around 100 entrepreneurs from all sectors of the economy to benefit from its services and support.