We talked to Basel AlZobi of Aaram Group on how they are helping businesses reach their potential and here is what he said about it.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Basel AlZobi: Our team, and Our families, are all well, thank God, blessed to be healthy in such difficult times. We were very careful in taking all the measures possible to protect our team and our customers during this pandemic.
Hope you and your loved ones are well too.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded Aaram Group.
Basel AlZobi: I am a Software Engineer, and I’ve been in the software industry for 18 years in Syria, and UAE/ Dubai working with a multinational company but from 2015 I am now in Turkey/ Istanbul.
My partner Ms. Rasha Alfakhry is a financial consultant, with 14 years of experience in credit analysis, risk management, financial modeling, and grants management.
We founded Aaram Group in 2015 as a software company in Istanbul, and specialize in business automation tools and digital transformation for SMEs in the MENA region.
How does Aaram Group innovate?
Basel AlZobi: We have introduced Aaram CRM, a real estate customized CRM, focusing on Arabic speaking clients, customizing the CRM to meet the needs of the real estate industry and to combine property management and interactive maps with the CRM and sales pipelines.
Later we have introduced Link CRM targeting services and retail sectors.
Our main goal is to raise awareness of the importance of digital transformation and business automation in the SME businesses in the MENA region.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Basel AlZobi: Unfortunately, COVID-19 hit many businesses hard, especially SMEs. Many of our clients either ran out of business or reduced their operations, which affected our sales naturally. However, we coped by finding new markets and customizing one of our products “Link CRM” to meet the needs of one of the most thriving sectors, i.e. the retail sector.
We emphasized the collaborative nature of our products and how it can help in a remote work environment. We’ve added many new features to help the users to be more productive.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Basel AlZobi: We had to make difficult choices, especially regarding spending cuts, also altering our roadmap for expanding and scaling-up.
Lessons learned are simple: we can’t rely on the assumption of a restriction-free travel world, and we have to adopt new strategies quickly and have a variety of products that help many different sectors.
What specific tools, software and management skills are you using to navigate this crisis?
Basel AlZobi: Mainly adopting 100% remote work environment, MS Teams, Zoom, WhatsApp, Trello among many other tools that helped us in these times.
Lucky for us we were already relying on these tools to a large extent
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Basel AlZobi: The following are our competitors;
PropSpace, among others.
We’re always relying on our main strength point: the distinguished Customer Service and Customer success experience. We’ll try to expand to other markets slowly but steadily, always being innovative and adaptive to the customers’ needs, and the new trends and best practices in the market.
We’re also trying to seek investments to accelerate our scaling-up process.
Your final thoughts?
Basel AlZobi: We thank you for your email and for offering us this opportunity to talk about our experience. We hope and pray that the world will bypass these difficult times stronger, closer, more tolerant, smart, and human.
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