First Person: The Entrepreneur Helping Middle Eastern Women Enter the Digital Economy |

Ms. Ataya is the founding partner and CEO of Mumzworld, and has served on the board of directors of the Dubai Chamber for the Digital Economy since 2011. In a conversation with May Yaccoub of UN News, she shared the challenges facing businesswomen in the Middle East. East, and why she is committed to supporting them.

“I have been working in the digital economy in the MENA region for the past two decades and have seen how it has undergone revolutionary changes. The digitization of the global economy is at the heart of how the world is changing, but women remain very underserved and we need to engage more of them.

UNCTAD‘s E-commerce for women does exactly that: it helps women by providing them with the information and resources that allow us women to make our voices heard and to feel our contributions.

I look forward to using my new role as a mentor and sharing my knowledge, skills and successes with other women in the region, as well as creating tools, information and resources that they can tap into.

On a mission to help mothers

I started my corporate career outside of the Middle East and used those years to develop the skills that would allow me to come home to the region and use what I learned to start businesses. in this part of the world and create value.

Mumzworld was built in 2011 to support women in the Arab world and help them make informed decisions for their families. Before, access to products for them was limited, prices were very high, and an online community that mothers could tap into did not exist. We set out to solve these problems and created a business that reaches the homes of over 2.5 million mothers, with the region’s largest offering of quality products, and has become the destination of choice for brands. global organizations that want to reach consumers in the Middle East.

Today, we have over 350 employees, with over 6,000 brands and over 300,000 products for sale on the website: a successful local business that has become a benchmark and created momentum for other women. are successful and create more jobs in the region. .

Conor Lennon / UN News

View of Business Bay, Dubai, from the JW Marriott Marquis

An industry dominated by men

The e-commerce industry in the Middle East is heavily dominated by men, from vendors to delivery companies and financiers. For a woman operating in this space, it can be a big challenge: you have to use your unique skills and abilities to move through the corporate maze and be successful.

The good news is that when women are successful and start scalable businesses, we give other women the courage to come along and start their own businesses as well.

I was helped by the fact that my husband and my three teenage sons are very understanding. Their support has been instrumental in my success as an entrepreneur has to compromise, sacrifice time and put in tremendous amount of effort, financial risk and compromise in order to build a successful business.

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