Industry: Travel and tourism
Company: Wild Guanabana
At the age of 16, British-born Egyptian Omar Samra climbed his first mountain in Switzerland. The experience gave him the adventure bug and in May 2007 he achieved his childhood dream and become the first Egyptian and youngest Arab to scale the 8,850-metre-high summit of Mount Everest, the world’s highest point. After his record-breaking feat, he entered the banking and private equities world in London and Hong Kong, working 15-hour days behind a desk. However, in the midst of the worst financial crisis the world has ever seen, and as he was climbing yet another mountain in the depth of the West Papuan jungle, he decided to quit the financial sector.
Deciding to marry his passion for travel and entrepreneurship, Samra decided, against the advice of many, to hand in his notice.
He spent over three years on the road, visiting over 80 countries and over 200 destinations.
After graduating with a degree in economics from the American University in Cairo and obtaining an MBA from London Business School in entrepreneurship, Samra leveraged his experiences by developing Wild Guanabana, a company which specialises in designing and creating ethical adventure travel experiences in the wild for companies in 15 countries across six continents.