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How I Did It: Lessons from the Front Lines of Business by Daniel McGinn, Harvard Business Review

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Aramex’s CEO on Turning a Failed Sale into a Huge Opportunity

by Fadi Ghandour

Fadi Ghandour is the founder and CEO of Aramex International and was a founding partner of Maktoob.com, the world’s largest Arab online community.

The Idea

Fadi Ghandour has built one of the most successful entrepreneurial enterprises to emerge from the Arab world, Aramex International, overcoming rejections, cash-flow crises, and naysayers in every country where he tried to do business.

In 1984, two years into building the express delivery company Aramex, I was preparing for the most important meeting I’d ever had. My partner, Bill Kingson, and I were hoping to persuade the Seattle-based Airborne Express to buy 50% of Aramex for $100,000.

At the time, out of a ...

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