From apps to appreneurship

TEDMOB – Lebanon’s Top 20

Greg Demarque | Executive

This company is part of Executive’s Top 20 for 2015. Read more stories from our entrepreneurship in Lebanon section, for the latest analysis on the country’s ecosystem.

TEDMOB

Industry: Technology and apps

Product: Various

Product launch: 2015

Established: 2015

Employees: 14

Founder: Mario Hachem

TEDMOB – Technology Entertainment Development for Mobile – was formed at the end of August 2015 by Mario Hachem and four silent financial backers. The firm offers clients services from three main business avenues: app development, value added service to mobile operators, and offering consulting services to ‘appreneurs’ – startups which are app-based and need support during development and launch.

The target market varies with each service provided. For large scale apps, all manner of entities often need to outsource app development as they do not have the internal manpower, and clients are willing to pay around $20,000 per service. For telecom value added content services, TEDMOB is aimed at mobile operators at the mercy of over-the-top (OTT) services, such as Whatsapp, which create no revenue for the operator while pushing them into becoming internet value providers. Their service offers projects to operators which generate them recurring revenues through subscriptions, such as the music streaming app Anghami, that offers content within an app and marketing through a subscription with a mobile operator. Their final business avenue, ‘appreneurship’, offers far more than the construction of app technology but extends to guidance and advice on monetization of products, and TEDMOB already has seven clients seeking this service.

While TEDMOB is a relatively junior startup, revenues reveal a strong start, with expected revenues of $350,000 in 2015, and projections of over $1 million for 2016. Hachem’s track record of successful app development with previous companies, such as apps2you – which offers app building services to clients – allows him to guide clients through the monetization of app development. His previous apps include “LAF Shield”, which was named 2015 best M-Government app in the Arab level Safety & Security category at the Dubai/Deloitte awards. As Lebanon becomes more connected to a global technological infrastructure, the need for strong app developers becomes ever more apparent, as is providing them with opportunities to use their skills in the country.

With regards to social entrepreneurship and impact, TEDMOB’s appeal goes beyond the obvious employment of his 14 team members. Hachem’s aim is to hire 14 more graduates with minimal experience in 2016, as he argues that TEDMOB has the capacity to train fresh recruits and bring them up to scratch. TEDMOB also has plans to launch an educational academy, which targets universities and offers undergraduates internships within the company, experience that is valuable to potential future employers. Future expansion plans include a foray into the gaming industry, which Hachem hopes will generate strong income through the ‘stickiness’ – the technological term for addictiveness – of their products.

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