Alper Celen is the founder of ENHANCE DIGITAL, a venture builder specializing in online vertical marketplaces that improve lifestyles in the Middle East and Africa. ENHANCE wholly owns JOIGIFTS.com, the leading online gifting platform in the Middle East. As an angel investor, Alper’s portfolio includes MONDORIDE.com, an e-hailing service for Africa; VERITY DECISION ANALYTICS, the preferred Experian (LON: EXPN) partner in the Middle East; COMMIT DEVICE PROTECTION, the leader in smartphone insurance and repair in the Middle East, MUBI.com, a VOD service for independent cinema; and BUGLANCE.com, a crowd-testing platform for mobile apps, and GETWHELP.com, a 360 customer care communications platform. Alper was also the founder of online food ordering service FOODONCLICK.com in Saudi Arabia (acquired by DeliveryHero in 2015).
Before becoming an entrepreneur, Alper was a management consultant in his own boutique consultancy Commit and as part of McKinsey & Company’s Scandinavian Office leadership where he focused in telecom strategy and organization practices. Alper has advised many governments on their innovation and startup ecosystem strategies as well as higher education. Previously, Alper has had leadership roles at Nokia, Ansys, IBM, and NASA subcontractor Millitech. Three satellites he helped design are still in Earth orbit.
Alper has an MBA with high distinction from Massachusetts Institute of Technology Sloan School of Management and Bachelor and Master’s degrees in Electrical Engineering from the University of Virginia where he studied as a National Science Foundation scholar. Alper is a Henry DuPont III Scholar and Siebel Scholar and is a recipient of the Alfred P. Sloan Achievement Award. He is an active mentor for TechStars and Startupbootcamp and judges for the MIT Enterprise Forum Pan Arab Business Plan Competition and continues to volunteer for MIT as an Educational Counsellor. He is a frequent speaker on topics of innovation, startup ecosystem requirements, and consumer behavior. Alper loves motorsports, long-distance running, and traveling to soon reach his goal of 100 countries from his home base in Dubai where he lives with his wife and son.