Ghady Karam Integrating Business Into Blockchain

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Ghady Karam Integrating Business Into Blockchain

We got to interview Ghady Karam, the Co-Founder and CFO of Aether, CEO of Malulo La Marca and Apex Finance.

Aether is a company that builds blockchain solutions to help digitize businesses. They are bringing solutions that can help businesses stay at the forefront of innovation at all times. Meanwhile, Apex Finance is a financial services company that helps clients with their expertise in the finance field. When talking about Malulo La Marca, it’s a retail apparel and fashion business based in Beirut.

Ghady has a demonstrated history when it comes to the financial industry. He is a persistent entrepreneur who never gives up. Through this interview, we learnt about the journey of Ghady and the business ways of his multiple businesses. Let’s get to it.

How did you start your entrepreneurship journey? Do you have some advice for beginners?

I never wanted to become an employee. After finishing my studies in finance, I decided to launch my first company in Lebanon,” Apex”, which offers financial services to all industries. With 0 investment capital, I was able to level the company up and grow it exponentially into the GCC region. I spent the first year working solely, never rejecting a client’s offer, until I had the capability to hire a team of experts and, moreover, generate more revenues. It was hard, but this made me evolve and succeed.

So, my advice for beginners is to never let the fear of failure hold you back from starting. Let hard work and passion drive you. Only when you take this risk will you succeed and grow.

What do you believe is the most crucial part of continuing business seamlessly?

Prioritizing clients. A client is an engine that keeps the business going. The company should be built on the core value of always respecting and meeting the client’s needs. A satisfied customer will turn into a loyal client, eventually leading to the business’s continuity and success.

And in order to meet the client’s needs, it is crucial to have a team of employees well-skilled to do the job. In order to allow employee retention, you must sustain a healthy and supportive workplace that is built on trust and communication between one another.

We saw that you are active as a leader in multiple companies. What are your goals through your companies, and how do you plan to help individuals with them?

I have plans to expand Apex to other countries. We are currently working on accounting software that runs on blockchain nodes and will provide more secure storage and transactions to our clients.

Aether, one of my biggest achievements, is a blockchain startup company I founded with my partner and good friend, Jad Adnan. He is known for his vast knowledge of blockchain development. While maintaining good teamwork, we could grow it at an exponential rate until we were highly recognized in a really short period. Aether is now operating in Dubai, and our goal is to retain a huge market acquisition in the GCC region and be listed as a public company.

I have another startup that I have worked on recently. Malulo La Marca is a brand that started out producing caps. It is a really tough market to penetrate. However, with a solid marketing campaign, we were able to sell it to the vast majority of the people. We are now working on expanding our line of products and creating a new line of clothing.

By continuously expanding these companies, I would then be able to offer employment. I also hope to inspire the new generation to work hard on what they want. It is a matter of trying and failing because what I’ve learned in my journey of startups is that failure is always a step forward to success.

Describe yourself in one word.

Persistent.

I faced many obstacles throughout my journey. However, I always maintained a focused mindset. I was never distracted by other people’s opinions, and with the support of my family and close friends, I was always put on the right track when I was demotivated to pursue what I had started.

Do employees’ energy and enthusiasm have a hand in business success? How do you plan to motivate your team to go the extra mile?

Motivating employees to work at their full potential is the main premise of successful management and is one of the main cores of business success. This is achieved by creating an uplifting and positive working environment, an encouraging incentive program and a good relationship.

It is important to listen to employees and tackle their concerns. What the employees have to offer will maximize when they feel appreciated; to me, they are the engine of the business. It is important to let the employees know that they are appreciated for their work. Motivating employees to work at their full potential is the main premise of successful management, and good leaders should set a vision against which employees execute.

How would you describe your leadership style?

I tried to lead by example. It was never about bossing people around; however, it was about leading people into doing tasks. Achievements happen when you are a leader in the company and not someone who scares employees to step up and share their ideas and pour their innovative minds into the company.

I always try to work on my leadership skills because I’ve learned that you will always have to build a good relationship with the employees if you desire the company to maintain consistent growth throughout the years.

Did you face any challenges during your career span? If so, how were you able to overcome them?

It is only normal to face many obstacles and problems along your entrepreneurial journey. For me, it is a rule to fail not only once but several times in the course of your career in order to learn from your mistakes and develop your skills, thoughts and personality to become a better version of yourself than you were yesterday. I have invested my time and money in many failed businesses, but because of that, I have learned to study the market steadily and target the correct niche for my next investment.

Starting Aether with 0 investment was a huge challenge. We rented a desk in a coworking space, and one of Jad’s smart ideas was to mine cryptocurrency on his computer and take advantage of the paid electricity. By that, we could cover the desk’s monthly rent. It was not easy, but we managed to remain consistent and dedicated to the success of the company.

In 7 months, we now operate with 9 employees on board and have a company registered in Delaware and Dubai as well. We have a huge market acquisition in Lebanon as well as in the GCC region while providing blockchain solutions to various industries. B2B, B2C, and B2G.

Are you adapting to digital transformation? How is it helping your business?

Not only am I adapting to digital transformation, but I also chose to take action and be part of this transformation.

Other than launching Aether Blockchain Development, I have managed to integrate this type of technology into the other businesses I mentioned: Apex Finance and Malulo La Marca.

It is a demanding field with a low supply, and I found my passion for this field growing over the years. This is why I chose to maximize my efforts and participate actively in this digital revolution. It is a revolution, and we are slowly witnessing a world of digitalization.

Do you use innovative ideas to be unique?

Innovation is a culture I have applied in my daily life and startups.

As mentioned before, I have integrated blockchain technology into APEX and plan on doing the same in Malulo La Marca. We are thinking of airdropping our products as NFTs to the consumers and creating a secondary market where they can sell them and profit from their NFTs. Once purchased from the consumer, the NFT will hold a different utility from the other and, in turn, create value for this product. This will increase our sales and generate a second revenue stream for the company.

Where is your leadership going? What benefits do your clients get from your company in this competitive world?

I will constantly work on developing myself to be able to grow my business and employees.

My businesses are well reputable and provide the best quality services and products. I always try to maintain this level of professionalism and quality standards for the consumers, and I highly believe that customer satisfaction does not happen by accident. It happens by design and quality work. It is our everyday job to make every important aspect of the customer experience a little bit better and try to build a community around that that could spread good feedback about our businesses.

My vision is to fully integrate all of my businesses into the blockchain as I visualize it as the new technology revolution. With the help of Aether, I plan to make it the engine of my current businesses and future startups and try to create a world of digitalization.

Connect with Ghady Karam on LinkedIn.

Find Aether, Apex Finance and Malulo La Marca on LinkedIn.

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