Thursday, 16 March 2023

PM — The science of relationships



Happy THURSDAY, friends. We’re finally winding down a hectic week as we slide into our last weekend before Ramadan rolls around.


Oil and gas companies are likely going to be first in the chute for state privatization reboot: Six of the first eight state-owned companies that are in line for privatization in the Madbouly government’s rebooted offering program are expected to be oil companies, Asharq Business reports, citing sources close to the matter. The preliminary list of the first eight companies that will see stake sales: Enppi, Midor, Ethydco, Assiut Oil Refining Company, eMethanex, Al Wadi for Phosphate Industries and Fertilizers, Port Said Container Handling, and Damietta Container Handling.


Credit Suisse is going to live to see another day, after the Swiss bank secured a USD 54 bn loan from the Swiss National Bank as a liquidity backstop. Credit Suisse will also buy back around CHF 3 bn of its debt to trim its “overall liability composition,” the bank said in a statement. The lifeline — the first for a major global bank since the 2008 financial crisis — has “raised serious doubts over whether central banks will be able to sustain aggressive interest rate hikes,” Reuters says. The story is getting front-page play on the Financial Times, the Wall Street Journal, and Bloomberg.


Madbouly inaugurates new projects at SCZone: Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouly inaugurated three new projects during a tour of the Suez Canal Economic Zone today, according to separate cabinet statements (here, here and here). Madbouly’s trip included attending the openings of the Egypt Fan Yang Textile Printing and Dyeing Project, the Kadmar International Company for International Transport and Logistics project and the inauguration of a new production fiberglass manufacturing line at the Goshi-Egypt factory.

** CATCH UP QUICK on the top stories from today’s EnterpriseAM:

  • Mark April on your calendars: The Madbouly government will take to market some of the state-owned companies earmarked for privatization in its rebooted offering program, Finance Minister Mohamed Maait said yesterday.
  • Global banking turmoil hits EGX: The EGX30 saw its biggest single-day drop in three years yesterday as the fallout from the US banking crisis continued to send tremors through global financial markets.
  • Hutchison Ports and co. to build two new container terminals at Ain Sokhna + Dekheila ports: The Madbouly government yesterday signed two agreements worth USD 1.6 bn with two international consortiums to develop new container terminals at the Ain Sokhna and Dekheila ports


RiseUp 2023: The RiseUp Summit starts today at the Grand Egyptian Museum. The three-day event runs through to Saturday.

Egypt is playing host to PPP MENA Forum: The two-day Public-Private Partnership MENA Forum kicks off at the Nile-Ritz Carlton in Cairo on 19 March, bringing together over 300 regional and international PPP players to discuss new partnership models and projects to advance the region’s socio-economic growth. Discussions held under the patronage of Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouly will include policies for infrastructure projects, private funding for national projects, governance, and best practices.

☀️ TOMORROW’S WEATHER- We have a pleasant weekend ahead of us: Our favorite weather app is predicting a daytime high of 26°C for a sunny Friday, with a nighttime low of 13°C. Saturday will cool down a few degrees to peak at 23°C and fall to 12°C in the evening.



Uber battles with drivers over their employment status: Ridersharing and app-based companies can now treat their drivers as independent contractors rather than employees, reports Reuters, after a California court ruled overturned a 2021 lower court ruling, calling it “unconstitutional.” The decision removes some of the regulatory risk for app-based companies like Uber, DoorDash, and Lyft. Markets responded positively to the news yesterday, with Uber shares ending yesterday’s trading session up 7%, while Lyft and DoorDash each closed up 6%. Challenges to the ruling are expected — but don’t count on them coming any time soon. Analysts said that it could take months for a case to be accepted and over a year to issue a ruling.

Could this ruling change things outside of California, too? In 2021, Uber caved to labor activists in the UK and agreed to give its drivers full employment status that entitles them to minimum wage, vacation pay, and pensions. While the California ruling only sets the rules for the state, it could pave the way for other states to follow — even more appealing, given that the ruling helped Uber avoid a hit of USD 20 mn to their 2024 core earnings, while DoorDash avoided a USD 170 mn hit.

China botches its attempt at an AI bot to challenge ChatGPT’s supremacy: In a rush to meet market demand, China’s leading search engine Baidu scrambled to launch its answer to OpenAI’s ChatGPT, Reuters reports. CEO Robin Lee’s demonstration of Ernie Bot — a rough acronym for “Enhanced Representation through Knowledge Integration” — was met with disappointment as they screened only pre-recorded videos of the bot’s task fulfillments, prompting company shares to fall as much as 10% before making a slight recovery.

Is that… all of it? During his 45-minute presentation, Lee stated that Baidu hopes to someday integrate Ernie Bot to browsers, smart cars, and cloud services. But after four years of development (and USD bns spent on research and development), it is still only available to a small group of users by invite, generating a collective groan from the online presentation’s 2 mn viewers. The introduction of Ernie Bot comes one day after OpenAI’s launch of GPT-4, an upgrade that allows the Microsoft-backed chatbot to generate content based on image prompts as well as text.



(all times CLT)

Hannah Montana all grown up: Pop star Miley Cyrus returns to Disney, more than 10 years after parting ways, with one of her trademark backyard sessions to celebrate the release of her latest album, Endless Summer Vacation. The backyard session, aired as a Disney+ exclusive, sees Cyrus performing a number of tracks off her new album, including her latest hit, Flowers, while also throwing in some of her older material, like The Climb. The 42-minute musical special is full of catchy tunes and Cyrus’ raspy voice, which will together encourage you to stream her new album, which Rolling Stone dubbed a “powerful artistic statement, focused and clear-eyed.”

It was a landmark evening at Santiago Bernabéu stadium yesterday, which ended in Real Madrid sealing its qualification to the quarterfinal round of the UEFA Champions League. Stadio Diego Armando Maradona also bore witness to a historical night after Napoli secured a 3-0 victory against Eintracht Frankfurt to qualify to the round of eight for the first time in its history.

And with that, we have the full set of teams moving on to the next round: Chelsea, Manchester City, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, Benfica, Milan, Inter, and Napoli.

The draws for the quarterfinal and semifinal rounds will be determined tomorrow at 1pm. The draws will determine the road forward for the championship as the teams battle it out to reach Istanbul’s Ataturk Stadium for the final match at the end of May.

The most important matches today as we wind down the round of 16 in the Europa League: Manchester United will face off against Real Betis at 7:45pm, after the English team came out on top at its home game with four goals against Real Betis’ one goal. Arsenal plays host to Sporting Lisbon at the Emirates Stadium at 10pm, after Arsenal’s away game saw the two teams secure one goal each. Juventus, meanwhile, heads into its match against SC Freiburg at 7:45pm with an aggregate score of 1-0. Real Sociedad is also playing against Roma at 10pm, with Roma having defeated Real Sociedad 2-0 in its away game.


Zamalek and Al Ahly are heading into CAF Champions League matches that they both need to win, after each team put itself in a tight spot in the group stage. Al Ahly, which is currently third in Group B with just four points from four matches, plays its away game against Coton Sport tomorrow at 6pm. The Cameroonian team is dead last in the group, with no points. Zamalek is in a similar position as Al Ahly, with four points putting it at third place in Group D. The White Knights will play against Algeria’s CR Belouizdad (second place in the group with six points) at 9pm. Elsewhere in Group D: Al Merrikh (at the bottom of the group) plays against ES Tunis, which leads the group, at 3pm tomorrow.

Gameweek 28 in the English Premier League also kicks off tomorrow with Newcastle v Nottingham Forest at 10pm.

Tomorrow in Serie A and La Liga:

  • Sassuolo v Spezia (Serie A — 7:30pm)
  • Atalanta v Empoli (Serie A — 9:45pm)
  • Real Valladolid v Athletic Club (La Liga — 10pm)

On Saturday, Manchester City meets Burnley in the quarter finals of the FA Cup. The match kicks off at 7:45pm.

And in the English Premier League on Saturday:

  • Southampton v Tottenham (5pm)
  • Aston Villa v Bournemouth (5pm)
  • Brentford v Leicester City (5pm)
  • Wolverhampton v Leeds (5pm)
  • Chelsea v Everton (7:30pm

Don’t miss out on the action in the Enterprise Fantasy League, with the competition getting more heated: Click here or enter the code 8o4sut.

Highlights from the Bundesliga, Serie A, and La Liga on Saturday:

  • Borussia Dortmund v Köln (Bundesliga — 7:30pm)
  • Milan v Udinese (Serie A — 9:45pm)
  • Atletico Madrid v Valencia (La Liga — 10pm)


An Enterprise favorite and fixture of off breakfasts (and lunches, and late-afternoon snacks…): The Lebanese Bakery offers mouajanat and man’oucheh that Lebanese friends have told us on authority are as authentic as anything you can get in Beirut. Their halloumi and basil man’oucheh, zaa’tar man’oucheh and lahmeh bel ajine make for well-portioned mid-afternoon snacks, while meat-eaters will be pleasantly surprised to bite into their fresh, lightly seasoned meat shawarma, chicken tawook and tender, or well-seasoned kofta sandwiches. Their lentil tabbouleh and cauliflower freekeh salads can be ordered as a main dish or on the side for sharing. It goes without saying that a side of hummus, baba ghanouj, labneh (with or without walnuts) and muhammara never hurt anyone. For dessert, an assortment of nutella, halaweh, pistachio and strawberry, and mouwara’et joz (baklava dough stuffed with crushed walnuts and simple syrup) will satiate your sweet tooth and serve as a perfect companion for a cup of joe.

(all times CLT)

The Tissot UCI Track Nations Cup is on its second and penultimate day in the Cairo International Stadium’s velodrome. With an international line-up of over 400 cyclists going head-to-head in one of the sport’s most revered events this will be the competition to track for the cyclist in your life. You can catch the event highlights on Youtube.

Get ready to be inspired by some of Egypt’s most talented female artists with Art d’Egypte’s Kaon exhibition at the Arts’ Hub in Zamalek. The exhibition, which kicked off last Thursday and runs through next Thursday, 23 March, is held in celebration of International Women's Day.

You have just a couple more days to catch Cirque du Soleil’s OVO: The event features 100 performers taking the stage with their acrobatic acts. OVO is hosting 16 shows until this Friday, 18 March at Cairo international Stadium Hall, courtesy of real estate developer Madinet Nasr for Housing and Development (pdf).

My Beloved is a personal performance showing at Rawabet theater tomorrow and Saturday, that tackles the moment where one faces an imposed fork in the road that forces one to question oneself and the ability to continue and on which path to choose. Book a ticket on Ticketsmarche to watch this very intimate production.

Join the K-revolution this weekend by attending the K-Festival at EGYcon X in Family Park, New Cairo. Tomorrow and on Saturday, you can enjoy a variety of Korean-centered culture, film and music activities for all ages, including a quiz, a movie night, and more.

Enjoy the beauty that surrounds us through Rana Chalabi’s Celestial Pas de Deux: Art Exhibition this Saturday at 4pm until 6 April. The performance includes a ballet performance, a video installation, and incorporates sculpture at MASQ, Maq’ad of Sultan Qaitbey in the City of the Dead.

For Arab music aficionados, enjoy a performance by Arab performer Ali El Haggar during his next concert on Saturday, 18 March between 8pm and 11pm at El Sawy Culturewheel, Zamalek.

Standup comedy from a Gen X favorite: Standup comedian Ahmed Ahmed will be here on Monday 20 March at 8pm for “Back to Om El Donia” at the American University in Cairo’s Tahrir Campus’ Ewart Memorial Hall. Also featured in the lineup: Brian Alyward, Hashem El Garhy, and Ola Roshdy. The tickets can be purchased through Ticketsmarche.

Get moving this Ramadan with Trifactory’s Relay Run on 5 April in Palm Hills Club, 6 October. Call up four buddies for a 2-hour (non-konafa-related) competition to run as many laps as possible. This event is happening from 9-11pm. Visit Trifactory’s website to register.


Small-town murder, large-scale corruption: Serial is back with a new longform investigative series, The Coldest Case in Laramie. Journalist Kim Barker returns to her high school town of Laramie, Wyoming, which she says is “the roughest place she’s ever lived.” Men were raised as “macho cowboys” in Laramie, Barker says, made to fight by teachers or held down and branded with letters. In 1985, a young woman was brutally murdered in Laramie and her apartment set on fire. Although several of Barker’s classmates became suspects, the murder of Shelli Wiley was never solved, yet everyone in Laramie says they know who did it: A former town cop named Fred Lamb, who was charged at one point and has even admitted to the murder on tape. Barker’s dogged investigation pulls apart a “cops protecting their own” mentality, violence against women, and racism in small town America.


See adult relationships through a scientific lens with Attached: Penned by neuroscientist and psychiatrist Amir Levine and psychologist Rachel Heller, Attached explores the science behind adult relationships, based on attachment theory. Although attachment theory has long been an area of interest in the world of developmental psychology, the focus has traditionally been on studying how children form attachments, particularly to their parents or caregivers. Attached takes that focus to later stages of human life by explaining how these attachment styles (which we develop in childhood, but are in no way irreversible) carry into romantic relationships. Through several case studies and real-life relationship examples, Levine and Heller explain how the three attachment styles — secure, anxious, and avoidant — typically behave in relationships, and how each style interacts with the other. Attached is also available in audiobook format.


The EGX30 fell 0.1% at today’s close on turnover of EGP 2.1 bn (1.6% above the 90-day average). Foreign investors were net sellers. The index is up 0.7% YTD.

In the green: Sidi Kerir Petrochemicals (+7.8%), Elsewedy Electric (+2.9%) and GB Auto (+4.6%).

In the red: CIRA Education (-9.5%), Eastern Company (-6.3%) and Orascom Construction (-2.2%).


What to expect in workplace trends this year: After being upended by the covid-19 pandemic, workplaces have been shifting back towards some semblance of normalcy — but not entirely without some covid legacies. Trends towards remote work and increased flexibility have become the norm in many companies, while tightening labor markets and the so-called “great resignation” are forcing employers to get creative to attract talent. As we make our way through 2023, here are five workplace trends to expect to take hold throughout the year.

#1- Labor markets will remain tight: Hiring difficulties are expected to persist in 2023 as demographic trends continue to cause a shortfall of candidates, according to a report (pdf) by employment platforms Indeed and Glassdoor. Aging populations, rising numbers of people opting for early retirements, and reduced migration are combining to tighten labor markets in developed economies, making it harder for companies to find the talent they need and giving employees the upper hand during wage negotiations.

#2- Remote work remains essential to the workforce: What started as a trend during the pandemic quickly became the new norm in the job market — and is unlikely to disappear anytime soon. The option for remote work or having a hybrid setup is one feature that most employees seek when applying for jobs. Mckinsey’s American Opportunity Survey revealed that 87% of Americans would work remotely if given the option. Working remotely has its perks and provides employees with a better work-life-balance, less commute stress, and location inclusivity. Remote work also increases the candidate pool by giving employers the ability to recruit employees from around the world, the survey notes. Based on a survey from Future Forum, 78% of employees want location flexibility while 95% want schedule flexibility.

Remote work is changing software industries, too: The rise in remote work has led to the expansion of the employee monitoring software market. The Global Employee Monitoring Software market amounted to USD 1.1 bn in 2021 and it is expected to grow to USD 2.1 bn by 2030, Spherical Insights reports.

#3- Salary expectations in a high-inflation environment: Higher pay is the most commonly cited reason for seeking a job change, according to a survey from Indeed Hiring Lab of men and women workers actively looking for new jobs. Those surveyed cited the option to work remotely as the second-biggest factor to consider when choosing a prospective employer. However, many employers aren’t necessarily capable of offering larger salaries as a result of the broader economic downturn, leading them to instead offer benefits such as retirement plans, health ins., paid family leave, and paid time off to attract job seekers.

#4- Moving the needle on burnout is a priority: Employers are exploring ways to create friendly and healthy environments for their employees, as mental health and well-being remain at the forefront in the labor market due to their importance in enhancing performance and retaining talent. According to Mckinsey’s Health Institute survey across 15 countries, 60% of employees have experienced at least one mental health challenge irrespective of their country, age, and industry. To support good mental health, employers must eliminate toxic behaviors in the workplace, raise awareness, assign sustainable workload, and push for inclusivity, McKinsey says.

#5- Four-day workweek instead of a five-day workweek: The call for a four-day workweek without changes to pay or compensation might be the biggest shift in the world of work taking hold this year, as more companies implement the new schedule. The last time a change to the workweek happened was in 1926, when Henry Ford instituted the rise of the five-day, 40-hour workweek in North America. Overall, the benefits of implementing a new four-day workweek include increased productivity, work-life balance and reduced overhead cost, Forbes reports. Microsoft Japan is one of the first companies to test drive the four-day working week for one month in 2019. The test drive resulted in productivity going up by 40%, 92% of employees reporting that they were satisfied, and electricity use going down by 23%. Here in Egypt, tech startup BasharSoft trialed a four-day workweek last year, with impressive results: The company said that 89% of its employees reported higher productivity, 82% said they were better able to manage their time, and 93% experienced lower levels of stress. BasharSoft’s business results have “either improved or remained stable” throughout the trial period and after, it said.



8-18 March (Wednesday-Saturday): Cirque du Soleil’s OVO, Cairo international Stadium Hall.

14-17 March (Tuesday-Friday): TISSOT UCI Track Nations Cup, Cairo International Stadium.

15 March (Wednesday): Season 3 of Ted Lasso will be out on Apple TV.

17-18 March (Friday-Saturday): K-Festival at EGYcon X, Family Park, New Cairo.

17-18 March (Friday-Saturday): My Beloved, Rawabet Art Space, Qasr El Nil, Cairo.

18 March (Saturday): Celestial Pas de Deux: Art Exhibition by Rana Chalabi @ MASQ, Maq’ad of Sultan Qaitbey, City of the Dead.

18 March (Saturday): Ali El Haggar concert, El Sawy Cultural Wheel, Zamalek.

20 March (Monday): Ahmed Ahmed Returns to Om El Donya, Ewart Memorial Hall, AUC’s Tahrir Campus.

23 March (Wednesday): First day of Ramadan (TBC). Maghreb will be at 6:08pm CLT.


16 April (Sunday): Coptic Easter

17 April (Monday): Sham El Nessim.

21-26 April (Friday-Wednesday): LaLiga Egypt Football Camp, Xanadu Hotel, Makadi Bay, Hurghada.

22 April (Saturday): Eid El Fitr (TBC).

25 April (Tuesday): Sinai Liberation Day.

27 April (Thursday): National holiday in observance of Sinai Liberation Day (TBC).


1 May (Monday): Labor Day.

1 May (Monday): Backstreet Boys at 7pm, ZED East, New Cairo.

4 May (Thursday): National holiday in observance of Labor Day (TBC).


10 June (Saturday): Thanaweya Amma examinations begin.

28 June-2 July (Wednesday-Sunday): Eid El Adha (TBC).

30 June (Friday): June 30 Revolution Day.


18 July (Tuesday): Islamic New Year.

20 July (Thursday): National holiday in observance of Islamic New Year (TBC).

23 July (Sunday): Revolution Day.

27 July (Thursday): National holiday in observance of Revolution Day.


26 September (Tuesday): Prophet Muhammad’s birthday (TBC).

28 September (Thursday): National holiday in observance of Prophet Muhammad’s birthday (TBC).


6 October (Friday): Armed Forces Day.

13 October- 20 October (Friday-Friday): The sixth edition of El Gouna Film Festival (GFF).

Enterprise is a daily publication of Enterprise Ventures LLC, an Egyptian limited liability company (commercial register 83594), and a subsidiary of Inktank Communications. Summaries are intended for guidance only and are provided on an as-is basis; kindly refer to the source article in its original language prior to undertaking any action. Neither Enterprise Ventures nor its staff assume any responsibility or liability for the accuracy of the information contained in this publication, whether in the form of summaries or analysis. © 2022 Enterprise Ventures LLC.

Enterprise is available without charge thanks to the generous support of HSBC Egypt (tax ID: 204-901-715), the leading corporate and retail lender in Egypt; EFG Hermes (tax ID: 200-178-385), the leading financial services corporation in frontier emerging markets; SODIC (tax ID: 212-168-002), a leading Egyptian real estate developer; SomaBay (tax ID: 204-903-300), our Red Sea holiday partner; Infinity (tax ID: 474-939-359), the ultimate way to power cities, industries, and homes directly from nature right here in Egypt; CIRA (tax ID: 200-069-608), the leading providers of K-12 and higher level education in Egypt; Orascom Construction (tax ID: 229-988-806), the leading construction and engineering company building infrastructure in Egypt and abroad; Moharram & Partners (tax ID: 616-112-459), the leading public policy and government affairs partner; Palm Hills Developments (tax ID: 432-737-014), a leading developer of commercial and residential properties; Mashreq (tax ID: 204-898-862), the MENA region’s leading homegrown personal and digital bank; Industrial Development Group (IDG) (tax ID:266-965-253), the leading builder of industrial parks in Egypt; Hassan Allam Properties (tax ID:  553-096-567), one of Egypt’s most prominent and leading builders; and Saleh, Barsoum & Abdel Aziz (tax ID: 220-002-827), the leading audit, tax and accounting firm in Egypt.