Hisham Ammatouri | Entrepreneur

Meet our Participants!

Hisham Ammatouri


Place of birth: Suwaida City, Syria

Favourite quote: “Those who fear to climb the mountains, would remain forever within the caves.” by Al-Shabbi (A poet)

Hidden Talent: I see in myself a good writer. I used to write short stories in one of the local newspapers in Dubai, and I have wrote several articles in Syrian Researchers Initiative. Recently I have wrote a concept of a video game story.

Hobbies: I am very much interested in DIY projects, especially those that involves some IT and technical knowledge. I also enjoy reading, mostly about new technologies and developing my programming skills, but also some novels as those of Dan Brown, or philosophical like The Black Swan. I also enjoy video games from time to time.

Favourite movie: Best movies are those that has realistic and solid scenarios. I love Sci-Fi movies, such as Gravity and Interstellar. Other that those I loved the Beautiful Mind movie and some others.

Why did you join Refugees Forward?

The setup of RF program is nice and supportive. Establishing a company, technically, might not be difficult, but finding the right investors and the right guidance about the local Dutch and European market is indeed challenging. Therefore, I have a strong belief that through RF I can meet with many people of different backgrounds, and that shall help me to achieve my goals.

Could you tell us a bit about your background and what project you are going to be working on? Originally I am from Syria, but I was born in United Arab Emirates, and mostly spent all my educational and business life out there before coming to Netherlands. My Bachelor’s degree is in Microbiology, which I have followed with a post-graduate diploma in Clinical Research Monitoring. During that period, I ran my own business as a freelancer IT technician. Later, and based on my BSc education, I have worked in the clinical research industry for 9 years in Dubai. I have completed my MBA studies during the last three years of my work in Dubai, and was granted the degree from Manchester University (in its Dubai executives campus). When I have arrived to the Netherlands, I have joined a programming course offered by a great non-profit organization called HackYourFuture where I have learned web-programming skills. After all that mixed history, I have decided to work for myself, because I am totally convinced that no company would really spend time or money to develop my ideas.

What would you like to learn over the course of the program?

I would need to know the local market untold rules (i.e. those related to Dutch specific business culture). I also need to know where I can create better prototypes, and later to commercially manufacture a product. It is also very important for me to learn about employing people into my company especially at the early start up process, where I am not financially stable.

Where do you see yourself in 2 years?

Within 2 years I expect that my first product is already in the market, and I with my team are developing or finalizing two more projects. One of them is serving the pharmaceutical industry, especially in the clinical research business. The second is an IT product with AI capabilities dedicated to help people with special needs.