Assarwa - MENA Business Consultants was founded in 2014 in order to support companies and individuals that want to do business in the Middle East and North Africa. The objective of our services is to provide our clients with the necessary information and eliminate any uncertainties and obstacles in order to assure their success in the region. Our company name underlines this ambition as its Arabic name refers to the verb 'to relieve/to unburden' and the deep-rooted and long-living Italian cypress which can be found around the Mediterranean.
Who are we and our partners
Christiaan Duinmaijer is the founder and Director of Assarwa. He has more than decade of knowledge and experience with the Middle East and North Africa, a region which he visits frequently and about which he publishes regularly. He has worked previously as cultural trainer at KIT Intercultural Management and as international fiscal advisor at PwC. He studied Arabic language and culture at Leiden University and the Dutch-Flemish Institute in Cairo and at the Institut National des Langues et Civilisations Orientales in Paris for his Master with North Africa as specialization.
Daniel Colijn has extensive professional experience, ranging from sales and engineering consultancy to field research and political analysis, and a broad network in the political and business circles in the Middle East and the Gulf. As a business consultant and Area Sales Manager in Saudi Arabia for one of the leading FMCG companies in the region, he supports companies with B2B matchmaking, government relations and stakeholder engagement, regulatory analysis and new business development whilst providing strategic insight on culture specific issues.
Walid Fouad Kais is legal expert in corporate, contract, financial and tort law. He has practiced law in several different countries, including Lebanon and the Gulf, which gives him the ability to provide the right insights and necessary legal advice for companies that do business in the Middle East and North Africa. Mr. Kais works within his specialized practice area to reward and serve the clients to the best of his abilities. He joined the bar in Lebanon in 1992 and later continued to practice law as the CEO of a major law firm in Abu Dhabi, UAE. Mr. Kais has several publications concerning contract and commercial law on his name.
Hasan Kujjah is a very experienced HR trainer who has organized during 15 years interpersonal, HR development, leadership and communication courses for more than 250 companies and institutes. After working, among others, in his native Syria and Dubai, Hasan now organizes courses in the Netherlands. He has received multiple international accreditations (TQCS Certificate OMAC, France 2010) and prizes (Diamond Eye Award for Quality and Excellence Other-Ways Association, Switzerland 2011) and has written multiple books on management and self development. See for more details his website.
Larbi Hbil has worked the past 25 years with many international companies and start-ups and helped them with mapping B2B and B2C markets, business development, setting up local teams and screening of potential business partners. He has a Moroccan-Dutch background and holds Bachelor degree in International Economics with a specialization in Export Management and a MBA in Leadership and Change. He currently lives in Dubai and has worked in Europe, Africa and Asia in the following sectors: IT, Automotive, Aviation, Finance, Professional Services, Capital Goods and Supplies & Equipment.
Jan Hoogland teaches Arabic at Radboud University in Nijmegen and is the author of the Arabic-Dutch/Dutch-Arabic dictionary published by Bulaaq. He is the founder and former director of the Dutch Institute in Morocco, where he also worked from 2009 until 2015 as education secretary at the Dutch embassy in Rabat. Over the years he has trained occasionally employees of Dutch companies for their stay in the country. Jan Hoogland has an extensive network in Morocco, which encompasses companies, NGOs, public institutes and universities. He publishes regularly on Morocco on his blog.
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