Tarek Mitri (Greg Demarque | Executive)

Preservation and innovation

Executive caught up with Tarek Mitri weeks after his appointment as the director of Issam Fares Institute (IFI) at the American University of Beirut. Sitting in his office in IFI, a building whose design he says he is not very fond of, Mitri talks about plans for Sursock Museum’s reopening, the cultural and artistic scene

Greg Demarque | Executive

Beirut, the artistic capital

Beirut’s burgeoning cityscape of cultural and artistic endeavors may have taken a commercial downturn in 2014 compared to previous years. This, however, did not deter the city’s community of gallerists, curators and exhibition sponsors from staging highly ambitious events. Among the many impressive efforts debuting in 2014 were two openings in November with planned durations

Greg Demarque | Executive

Creativity in the air

What makes for the most deplorable shortfall in all other sectors of the Lebanese economy — the infuriating lack of data — fully applies to the exercise of appraising Beirut as an artistic hub and art market. Thankfully so. Measuring art is like selling air. In the sense that, if you live in a city

Hoteliers across Lebanon, accustomed to a volatile security situation, saw a better year in 2014 (Greg Demarque | Executive)

A bumpy ride

Despite a rocky start, and a few ups and downs early in the summer season, 2014 is shaping up to be a better year than feared by many in the Lebanese hotel industry. With the number of tourists up by 22.6 percent from 2013 in the third quarter of the year, according to figures from

Michel Pharaon (Greg Demarque | Executive)

A break in the clouds

Executive sat with the Minister of Tourism Michel Pharaon to discuss ‘Live Love Lebanon’, the latest campaign to attract foreigners and Lebanese expats to the country, as well as the ministry’s views on the tourism season this past summer and its plans for 2015.   What was the aim of the ‘Live Love Lebanon’ campaign?

2015 means new challenges and trends in Lebanon's F&B sector (Greg Demarque | Executive)

New flavors

New Year, new trends: when it comes to the Lebanese food and beverage (F&B) industry, 2015 brings with it its share of new places and latest fads. The trends of 2014 have been put to the test, some have died, others have remained, but all have been affected by the economic situation and judged by

Venues are struggling to fill empty tables (Greg Demarque | Executive)

Local market rules

As another year rolls by with a meager number of tourists, and more young Lebanese leave the country for greener pastures while those who stay complain of empty pockets, Lebanon’s food and beverage (F&B) sector has had to be resourceful as it determinedly weathers yet another storm. The reality on the ground “There is an

(Greg Demarque | Executive)

Thinking outside the box

By definition, the hospitality sector is reliant on the presence of tourists, and therefore reliant on peace and stability. It is no wonder then that Lebanon’s hospitality industry, in both its hotels and food and beverage divisions, has been only limping along for the past few years. Yet, ever the entrepreneurs, those in Lebanon’s hospitality

Fin Com Strategy&

Going digital

Digital technology is reshaping wealth management around the globe, according to a Strategy& survey that appeared in our Global Wealth Management Outlook 2014–2015. Interestingly, however, wealth managers in the Middle East, while generally confirming the importance of digital technologies, did so with less conviction and sense of urgency than their Asian, European, and North American

(Phil Whitehouse | Flickr | CC BY 2.0)

Sowing seeds

Much is written and more is discussed about the impact of Syrian refugees on the Lebanese labor market. Plenty of analyses and proposals are in the air. This is as commendable as it is understandable: Lebanon faces both a humanitarian crisis and a labor market crisis. In the labor market, an already bad situation is

Abdallah and Ghaith Yafi (Greg Demarque | Executive)

Getting hands on

Just as Lebanon’s startup ecosystem is growing, so is the diversity of its funding sources. Abdallah and Ghaith Yafi are the brother duo behind Y Venture Partners (YVP), a new, early stage investment and advisory firm. Prior to starting this venture, they founded Lebanese ecommerce site ScoopCity as well as Canadian ecommerce site TheVolts. Executive


Extracting transparency

In October 2014, Lebanon hosted its first ever Petroleum Day. Much of the event’s focus was on civil society’s role in monitoring the country’s natural resources. One of the primary tools to aid this endeavor will come through the adoption of the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI) — a global transparency initiative led by governments,

ENTRE Review

In comes the money

As of this year, startups in Lebanon will no longer have to complain over a lack of investors willing to give them cash in exchange for equity stakes. There are several new venture capital (VC) funds on the block, both from existing players and new ones. While this does not guarantee that entrepreneurs will not

Moving up

Positive steps

Entrepreneurs have had a good year in 2014. With the eTobb team being admitted to Mountain View’s 500 Startups, considered to be one of the top accelerators globally, and with one of the cofounders of Ki being admitted to the Startup Sauna accelerator in Helsinki, Lebanese startups are increasingly showcasing their talents abroad. Closer to

A technician cuts shapes using a machine capable of slicing through 33cm thick stainless steel

The technologies of tomorrow

Innovative Lebanese manufacturers are harnessing the technologies of tomorrow in their factories today. Executive went to Technica for an inside peek at how the company employs robotic technology in the manufacturing and maintenance of automated turnkey solutions — machines that, for example, package candy bars and other consumable products. Starting as a small operation in