Kareem Ennab is a Jordanian Olympian who founded his own swim academy and is now hoping to develop the infrastructure to support his business.
He completed the Athlete365 Business Accelerator course to support his idea and turn it into a practical business plan, and has been receiving six months of mentoring from a business expert since participating in a two-day workshop.
Sign up to Athlete365 to access the online course and take advantage of this amazing opportunity to kickstart your own business idea.
Competing at London 2012 was an amazing opportunity for me, and one I will never forget. It wasn’t easy at all, but the Olympic experience gave me a lot of energy to do much better and to help the community here in Jordan. I learned a lot from my travels and competing, so I said to myself: “I know what’s wrong with swimming here in Jordan; why don’t I start my own swim academy and have my own swimming pool so I can make champions?”
Identifying a problem
Once I retired in 2012, I worked in my family business in Jordan in the electronics industry. It wasn’t anything to do with sport, but I learned about the business world. In 2017, I decided to make the transition back to sport and set up my own swim academy. I realised that swimming was becoming more popular in Jordan, but that there weren’t many swimming pools. Most of the pools are in schools, so with the academy we have to rent them to teach the children. But from a business point of view, it would make sense to own a pool.
Out of nowhere, the Jordanian Olympic Committee gave me a call and asked if I would be interested in a business course run by Athlete365. And I thought: “Why not?”
Before I signed up for the Athlete365 Business Accelerator, I thought that I had everything in mind and that I knew how to do it, but it really opened my eyes to different ideas on how to run a business. I learned far more than I expected to.
Of course, it is a business, and we want it to make money; but in the course we mostly considered the community impact. In Jordan, a lot of people cannot afford swimming lessons, and there aren’t even any swimming pools in some areas. With the community in mind, we decided to allow disadvantaged children to train for free and to have transport arranged for them.
Now, the goal is to find investors in order to have our own swimming pool. This is something that I want to build for the future and that can last forever.
Structuring the business
What I liked about the Athlete365 Business Accelerator programme was that each month was dedicated to a different topic of planning your business. One month you could be working on financial strategies, then marketing, and so on. That really helped because you could focus on one thing, forget about everything else, and then combine it all together at the end to create your masterpiece.
The programme can really help you and expand your knowledge further than you expect.
BEFORE I SIGNED IP FOR THE ATHLETE365 BUSINESS ACCELERATOR, I THOUGHT THAT I HAD EVERYTHING IN MIND AND THAT I KNEW HOW TO DO IT, BUT IT REALLY OPENED MY EYES TO DIFFERENT IDEAS ON HOW TO RUN A BUSINESS. I LEARNED FAR MORE THAN I EXPECTED TO.