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Fri 15 Nov 2019 01:13 AM

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Entrepreneur of the Week: Omar Al Ashi, CEO of Urent

The first peer-to-peer vehicle sharing mobile platform in the region

Entrepreneur of the Week: Omar Al Ashi, CEO of Urent

Courtesy: ITP Media Group

What were you doing before launching your start-up?

Building the foundation of my start-up by making sure that the culture here in the UAE will have no problems with the user interface and user experience.

How did the idea for Urent come about?

The idea first came up when I was using TURO a competitor based in Canada. I was one of the first users to use the platform in the year 2012, and I was hooked ever since. The idea kept growing in my head. types of vehicles.

What is your business model? Urent is a peer-to-peer vehicle sharing platform, an online marketplace for vehicle rentals, Urent will offer multiple vehicle categories, and will also enable the residents of the UAE to be open to sharing their depreciating asset with others. It will act as a marketplace for commercial entities, and individual private owners. Taking the vehicle rental business online, paperless, and effortless.

Why does the market need a product like Urent?

Dubai has the highest human to vehicle ratio in the world. Population being a little over 9.6 million, vehicles floating around 4.7 million in inventory. This is a clear indication about the high purchasing power of vehicles here in the UAE. Urent is supposed to offer a wide range of vehicles with affordable prices, and promote vehicle sharing rather than purchasing.

What are your main challenges when it comes to operating your start-up?

Licensing and RTA regulations were our biggest challenge when launching in the UAE.

How is the business funded?

The business has been funded via high-profile local investors, with the support of SEED Group MENA and The Private Office Of Sheikh Saeed Bin Ahmed Al Maktoum.

Any expansion plans in the UAE, GCC and beyond?

We plan to expand across the six GCC member states.

What is the best advice anyone has ever given you?

Obstacles are bound to exist. It is discipline, consistency, and persistence that will get you to were you desire to be.

What is it really like being an entrepreneur? It’s living life on the edge, where comfort zone does not exist, and, even if you were to feel comfortable, it feels quite wrong.

Entrepreneur is a term with many meanings, but, to me, its about chasing dreams while using passion as your fuel.