Founder and CEO
Aged just 35, Fodhil Benturquia has already made a name for himself in the competitive world of tech entrepreneurship. But it wasn’t a smooth ride.
Having moved from France to the UAE in 2007 to pursue an investment banking career with Societe General Corporate Investment Banking, he found himself being made redundant a year later due to an economic downturn. Unlike those who lost their jobs and decided to leave the country, Benturquia stayed in Dubai to “dream big,” he told Arabian Business. And it paid off.
He quickly became involved in the e-commerce sector, which was, at the time, considered a high-risk industry with no credibility or viable business model, according to Benturquia. Fascinated with its potentially disruptive nature, however, he co-founded MarkaVIP in 2010.
While his journey at the firm was short-lived, Benturquia joined the Souq.com team just a few months later, successfully launching its Deal of the Day model.
Later, he accepted the challenge of leading Souq.com’s Saudi Arabia operations, where he led the company’s largest profit and loss statement for two years.
After five years at Souq – acquired by Amazon.com for almost $600million – he had enough experience on building an e-commerce firm from the ground-up to help set up Noon.com.
And in 2015, at the age of 31, he became the platform’s Group CEO. The $1bn joint venture between Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund and Dubai real estate tycoon Mohamed Alabbar, was a “character-forming experience” for Benturquia, who managed to help build it into one of the region’s largest e-commerce players in less than 24 months.
His time at Noon.com ended quickly, however, when he realised that there is a gap in the region’s healthcare market for a tech platform connecting patients with healthcare professionals, having himself experienced challenges with making doctor appointments.
And so, Okadoc was born. The platform provides a digital solution in a world where both patients and hospitals rely on old-fashioned call centres, and are unable to follow rapidly changing consumer behaviors.
Today, Benturquia leads a team of 40, who share his mission to improve the healthcare experience for all. He aims to establish Okadoc as “the undisputed leading healthtech start-up in the region and beyond”.