In this new series, we will be highlighting various young entrepreneurs from the Arab World who are passionate about technology and making a difference. We caught up with Ismail Rachdaoui, a young Moroccan entrepreneur, change maker and Tech enthusiast to discuss nextwi, a startup he founded to revolutionise how businesses leverage wifi to drive greater customer interaction.
1. Who is Ismail in his own words
A humble guy who likes to learn new things and is committed to bring more value to the Moroccan startup ecosystem. I care about education, technology and social equity, and I believe in the “ethical entrepreneurship” model.
2. How did you decide to jump on the entrepreneurial wagon?
I had a dream to launch my own company but no plane to start at this age just after getting my engineering degree.
3. What projects are you involved in currently?
Currently I’m managing nextwi, a startup specialised in WiFi technology. We help merchants build a strong brand and increase customer’s loyalty through WiFi connectivity. At this moment I am a hundred percent focusing on nextwi and have no plan to start anything aside.
4. How do you manage your time given all your involvements?
Between family and my startup, it is often hard to manage my time. There are time where I had to work for 18 hours a day, but thanks to my family’s support and encouragement, it’s been so far an enjoyable journey. My family and friends have been my biggest supporters; they all believe in what I do and they deploy efforts to help me go through when things get tricky.
5. What’s your secret to success?
The secret to success is that there is no secret!
6. What advice do you have for fellow entrepreneurs?
It’s hard to advise when you have so much more to learn, but mine would be to seek knowledge at all time and get advices from anyone you meet, be it the man who owns a small shop in your neighbourhood to the star entrepreneurs adorning magazine covers.
7. What’s next for you?
After getting initial traction, we are looking for funding from angel investors to support our development and marketing efforts, while in parallel we continue our efforts to acquire more customers. My future plan is to expand to the rest of MENA and sub-African markets.