AUI Celebrates Exemplary Work of SBA Students – Capstone Award Ceremony


Like every year, Al Akhawayn University has the pleasure to host its Capstone Award Ceremony - the best strategy awards for the academic year 2021 and announce its winners.


The theme for this year was “Digitalization Strategies Across Africa” with 50 students competing. The Award Ceremony was held at the Al Akhawayn Conference Center and was judged by 12 corporate executives from Morocco, Senegal, Rwanda, South Africa, and Portugal to ensure the excellence of SBA students’ strategies and coherence with the markets and needs of Morocco and Sub-Saharan Africa.  


Two Winning Teams from Maroc Numeric Cluster

The Best Overall Corporate Strategy for Maroc Numeric Cluster companies was awarded to the PORTNET Team of Wiam Stitou, Zineb Bousffiha, Hamza Sossey Alaoui whose winning strategy was called Digitizing Suppliers’ Payments to Simplify Moroccan Import Procedures.”Portnet is a member of the Maroc Numeric Cluster located in Casablanca. The company offers a logistics information platform that enables the competitiveness of the Moroccan ports.


Photo of Portnet winning team Left to Right: Wiam Stitou, Zineb Bousffiha, Mr. Tayeb Sbihi Judge from Dachser Mohammedia and Hamza Sossey Alaoui.


The Most Actionable Strategy for Maroc Numeric Cluster companies was awarded to the WEBHELP Team of Imane Alami Harchali, Oumaima Drissi Boutaybi, Inssaf Majid whose winning strategy was called “The Digitalization of the Hiring Process in Call Centers Across Morocco.” Webhelp is a multinational business process outsourcing company headquartered in Paris with offices across Morocco.


The Winning Team from Egypt, Ethiopia, Mauritius

The Best Overall Corporate Strategy for Egypt, Ethiopia, Mauritius was awarded to the ATEXO Team of Rawa Elargab, Sahar El Farouq, Hiba Benkhraba whose winning strategy was “The Digitalization of all Public Services with a “One-Stop-Shop” Platform partnering with Mauritian Experts.” Atexo develops new technologies that innovate operating models, processes, and tools of call center organizations.


Photo of Atexo winning team Left to Right are: Rawa Elargab, Sahar El Farouq, Hiba BenkhrabaMr. Khalid Mengad Judge from Immorente Casablanca.



Two Winning Teams from Kenya and South Africa

The Best Overall Corporate Strategy for Kenya and South Africa was awarded to the KIVA Team of Hajar Yassin, Sanae Ouhmad, Ibtissam Samia whose winning strategy was “Diversifying the Digital Liquidity Sources including Kenyan Crowd Funding.” Kiva is a non-profit organization crowdfunding organization in developing countries.


Photo of Kiva winning team Left to Right are: Assistant Professor of Marketing Ms. Kawtar Abouhazim, Hajar Yassin, Sanae Ouhmad, Capstone Professor Deborah MacArthur, Ibtissam Samia.


The Most Innovatively Courageous Strategy for Kenya and South Africa was awarded to the FARMDRIVE Team of Ayoub Bounasser, Taha El Messaoudi, Rayane Staouni Benabdallah with “The Strategy to Enable Small Farmers to Sell their Displayed Products on the FarmDrive Market Platform.” FarmDrive uses mobile phones, alternative data, and machine learning to close the data gap to increase lending to creditworthy smallholder farmers.


Photo of FarmDrive winning team Left to Right are: Ayoub Bounasser, Taha El Messaoudi,with Mr. Ibrahim El Kadiri Judge from SANLAM Casablanca. (Not pictured: Rayane Staouni Benabdallah)


Two Winning Teams from Ghana

The Best Overall Corporate Strategy for Ghana was awarded to the MTN Team of Mohammed Aboulkacem, Chaimaa Rachid, Hind El Quarrouti whose winning strategy was Increasing Financial Inclusion for Women by Providing a New Web/Mobile Microfinance Platform in Ghana.” MTN (Mobile Telephone Networks) Groupis a South African mobile telecommunications company.



Photo of MTN winning team Left to Right are: Mohammed Aboulkacem, Chaimaa Rachid, & Hind El Quarrouti, Mrs. Hind Hasnaoui Judge from Dachser Mohammedia.


The Most Ambitious strategy for Ghana was awarded to the AGROCENTA Team of Kenza Abdelhaq, Kenza Benessalah, Nouhaila Zaki with “The Strategy Connecting Smallholder Farmers Cross-Country to Major Buyers Both Physically and Digitally.” Agrocenta deploys mobile and web technologies that bring farming advice, weather forecasts, market information, and financial tips to farmers, who are traditionally out of reach.


Photo of Agrocenta winning team Left to Right are: Kenza Benessalah, Nouhaila Zaki, Kenza Abdelhaq, Mr. Imad Bouziane Judge from Nitron Group Africa, Asia, Americas.


These winning 7 teams were congratulated by their family and friends at the Award Ceremony which was opened by Vice President Messari and hosted by SBA Interim Dean Koubida. The Moderator was SBA Capstone Professor Deborah MacArthur.

“All Capstone students are winners! All teams created relevant and well-researched corporate strategies that impressed our corporate judges from 5 countries. We chose the theme “Digitalization Strategies Across Africa” because it is relevant to the Class of 2021’s future. These projects are a final step across the bridge from AUI’s academic realm to the real corporate environments of Morocco and Africa. We congratulate them all and wish them the best of luck as they go forth working or studying applying all they learned at AUI in the Moroccan African marketplaces,” said Mrs. Deborah MacArthur, moderator, and SBA Capstone Professor.