Nada Alawi, our latest Entrepreneur of the Week, started her career in the oil and gas industry in Houston, Texas, before returning to Bahrain to help her family set up OSHO Centre, an occupational health and safety centre.
In 2011, she founded ANNADA, a luxury lifestyle brand of unique scarves and other female accessories with her sister Noor Alawi.
Partnering with Middle Eastern artists, the sisters have grown ANNADA to reach GCC’s top department stores, such as Saks Fifth Avenue Middle East. They recently opened the first ANNADA store at Seef Mall in Manama.
The company has received several awards, including being named among the fastest growing companies in Dubai by VISA and being awarded by The Ministry of Labour in the Kingdom of Bahrain and the Bahrain Development Bank.
In addition to running her business, Alawi serves as a board member of the Bahrain Economic Development Board, prior to which she was a board member of the Bahrain Bourse. She was recognised at the Mohammed Bin Rashid Awards for Young Business Leaders as the Best Arab Start-up Business in the female category.
More recently, Alawi received the 2016 Bahraini Female Entrepreneurship Seal from Her Majesty Princess Sabeeka Bint Ibrahim Al Khalifa.
She regularly takes part in entrepreneurship events and conferences, such as INJAZ Bahrain, advising the Bahraini youth on how to start up their businesses.
“Bahrain is in many ways an ideal location for starting up a business because the kingdom offers an ideal platform from which we can access the high-value GCC markets. It also enjoys a number of other competitive advantages, including highly competitive operational costs and a skilled and bilingual national workforce,” says Alawi.
As the president of the Rotary Club in Bahrain, Alawi has initiated several CSR initiatives and programmes, such as a diabetes awareness campaign and initiatives to provide hearing aids and Ramadan boxes to needy families.
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