By Nesreen Ramsis
Shezlong, an online platform specialised in rehabilitation and psychotherapy, seeks to expand outside Egypt, and intends to negotiate with six psychotherapists from the US, Canada and Australia.
Shezlong CEO Ahmed Abu ElHaz said that the number of psychotherapists working through Shezlong currently stands at three, who offer their services for approximately 50 hours per week. He added that he intends to increase their number to around 12 psychotherapists by the end of this year.
He also said that Shezlong intends to train students during the summer vacation, with the students to be rewarded at the end of the training, in addition to certificates of appreciation. Abu ElHaz added that the number of clients has now reached approximately 600 clients, a number he intends to increase to 5,000 by the end of this year. It is hoped that this figure will climb even further, to reach 15,000 clients over the first half of 2016, according to the company’s strategy.
Abu ElHaz continued by saying that he seeks to negotiate with new investors to obtain funds of $250,000. In return, the investor will own a share in the company of no more than 20%, to be determined by agreement. He added that his company’s worth is estimated at around EGP 1.5m.
He pointed out that he has also recently launched a new English-language version of Shezlong’s website. Abu ElHaz said he intends to launch a smartphone application operating on Android and Windows Phone, as well as iPhones, by the end of this year.
He confirmed that financial support is one of the biggest challenges facing Shezlong. According to Abu ElHaz, a training period currently being undertaken with the Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center (TIEC) will end next January. TIEC will provide Shezlong with an office in which to work until they achieve a new investment.
He assured that TIEC is the best and most important business incubator in Egypt and the Arab world. TIEC offers moral, financial and technical support, in addition to the public support offered to the entrepreneur, without anything in return.
Shezlong does not have any competitors in Egypt or the Arab world, according to Abu ElHaz, who confirmed that clients are reacting well to the website’s idea, especially through social media.
He concluded that Shezlong’s subscriptions range between EGP 150 to EGP 250 per hour, while the consultation cost is EGP 50.