The leap of faith: inspiring startups and entrepreneurism across two continents and industries

The leap of faith: inspiring startups and entrepreneurism across two continents and industries

Moatassem Moatez
Entrepreneur | Founder & CEO MYCOURIER INC.
TEDx Speaker | Public Speaker Toronto, Canada Area
Cohort of 2011

Moatassem is owner of My Courier, Inc. (MYCU) whose entrepreneurial experience, multi-national, corporate leadership background, and commitment to customer service paved the way for his partnership with Amazon who describe him as a person whose “passion for purpose, life, and people are a great fit for the Amazon DSP (Delivery Service Partner) program. Already engaged in a self-employed delivery model, Moatassem came across news of the Amazon DSP program by chance, but upon deeper exploration of the program’s top-notch tools and resources designed to teach virtually anyone how to successfully launch, grow and navigate a logistics-based business, Moatassem knew he needed to take a leap of faith.” 

Taking a leap of faith

During my MBA studies I was working in a corporate - Nestle Middle East - and in my last semester I took my first leap of faith and created a startup in Egypt (‘MORE’ - Moments of Real Entertainment) which is a loyalty and reward program. From this point I was hooked on the startup world and the entrepreneurial mindset. I had started to invest in and actively manage businesses across the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt. 

In 2019, I took my second leap of faith by moving to Toronto, Canada, and while I was still navigating the new country and looking for the value I could add to the market, the lockdown kicked-in, reducing my chances of building a network and looking for opportunities almost to zero. 
But in early 2020, I saw an opportunity in ‘last mile’ delivery, as online commercial grew and orders started picking up but deliveries were not picking up at the same rate. So, I registered a corporation, built an operation, hired a team, and planned business development, with one fundamental challenge: I had never worked in the logistics industry.

In October 2020, I signed an Amazon delivery partner contract, responsible for Downtown Toronto. By June 2021, the company had grown to reach 1 million parcels per month, with 80 delivery associates servicing the Downtown Toronto area.

The MBA changed everything

The MBA is all about putting the puzzle together. The first few years in any ‘real life’ job is full of on-the-job learning, which sometimes does not give you time to step back and look at the big picture. The MBA is the window through which you can look at the big picture and gives you the time to put all the information in perspective. Both the academic courses and the opportunity to connect them to real world examples have helped me to understand the various functions of a business.

I wanted to learn ‘how to Learn’ and not ‘what to learn’ – the MBA guided me to knowing how to seek information and effectively use the huge pool of knowledge that is available at a click of a button.

When I started the MBA, I already had the drive to create a startup but the first step was always going to be the hardest. Halfway through the MBA, I took my chance and moved from the corporate world into my first startup.

Looking back, for me one of the key highlights of the MBA was the opportunity to go on courses and workshops in other countries (Manchester is a great place to take a couple of courses). It also gave me the possibility for UOM to connect me with several individuals and organizations that helped me during my early days in setting up the business and getting the name out there. My fellow students played a really important role in my MBA experience and I would have liked more time to get to know more of my peers.

There were three key factors in choosing the Manchester MBA. Firstly, the MBA programme is triple accredited and gives you a good base on which you can build if you want to use the certification for further learning. Secondly, the flexible part-time study schedule works well for someone with a full-time profession (online and one week study). Thirdly, it gives you the chance to take courses in other countries and experience different cultures and learning styles.

Moving from the corporate world to a startup business with all its ambiguity and uncertainty was a significant change and challenge. My career is still in startups and entrepreneurship but my country and industry have both changed twice and the context has changed completely each time – the MBA experience helped me manage these transitions.

The University of Manchester and the Middle East Centre know how to keep a connection with their alumni – even nine years after my graduation and now when I am living in Canada. The team is still in touch and shares lots of insights, information about events and knowledge. It goes to show that the Manchester MBA is not just a two-year programme, it is a lifetime community - Congrats!