Workshop on Challenges Facing Pakistan’s Startup Ecosystem

Open Karachi’s 4th Annual Conference, ECon 2017 at Institute of Business Management (IoBM)
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Workshop on Challenges Facing Pakistan’s Startup Ecosystem by Planet N and Karandaaz Pakistan
January 24, 2017

LAHORE: With the objective to connect entrepreneurs on the path to commercialisation with industry experts and to promote exchange of ideas with each other, Karandaaz Pakistan, in partnership with Planet N Group of Companies and Lahore University of Management Sciences, hosted a workshop on the “Challenges in the Start-up Ecosystem in Pakistan”.

The workshop was aimed at engaging with key stakeholders meaningfully to discuss the operating environment, deliberate on the challenges in the startup ecosystem and propose strategies to address those challenges.

The participants identified the common challenges faced by the startups and suggested solutions. Broad discussion areas included curriculum and awareness, company law, role of incubators and accelerators, and initial public offerings (IPOs) for which working groups were formed.

The workshop showcased the value, economic impact and contribution to entrepreneurial advancements for the development of startup ecosystem in Pakistan.Planet N Group Founder Nadeem Hussain spoke about the importance of building an ecosystem by discussing the shortcomings and areas of improvement.

He also highlighted the potential areas that needed to be addressed for empowering the entrepreneurial culture in order to avoid economic failure.He further shed light on how to create an enabling environment for Pakistan’s economic revolution with the help of startup ecosystem.

Karandaaz Pakistan CEO Ali Sarfraz said active collaboration and engagement between startups and ecosystem enablers, such as incubators, accelerators and policymakers, was critical in order to develop a comprehensive understanding of the challenges faced by the aspiring and existing entrepreneurs and developing creative solutions.

The workshop concluded with a presentation on the key findings of a report commissioned by Karandaaz Pakistan titled “Seeding innovation landscape: A framework for rooting FinTechs in Pakistan”.

Qasif Shahid, who represented FinSurgents, the research partner for the report, discussed the opportunities and gaps that existed in the FinTech ecosystem in Pakistan and the future of digital financial services in the country.