Thirty-four-year-old Rabih Mokbel is one of the Middle East’s top events entrepreneurs. Based in Cairo, Egypt Mokbel, got his start working in his family’s catering business in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. With his company Venture Lifestyle, Mokbel has planned, organized and executed some of the region’s top events and concerts, including his bringing Jennifer Lopez to Cairo in 2019. But it’s his Lebanese roots that sparked Mokbel to create an event in Egypt to help Lebanese designers who are still affected by the August 4th explosion.
This is the first ‘Fashion Central’ edition for Mokbel and Uptown Cairo Emaar, an Emirati real estate developer with property in Egypt. “Every year I do a fashion event for Emaar,” says Mokbel. “Last year I brought Lebanese couture designer Nicholas Jebran to Cairo. I organized a fashion show for him here in Egypt. This year I decided that instead of one designer, it would be for many designers over four days in a row of fashion, art, and food and beverage.”
The four-day event is bringing all aspects of art under one roof where Arab fashion designers are getting the opportunity to present their collections and accessories in Cairo. Done in a collaborative effort along side content and concept creators CONTEGRAM, and design studio THE CULT- the event is filled with a bazaar of Lebanese, Jordanian and Egyptian designers, along with workshops, manicures, and talks revolving around all things fashion. L’Aterlier Nawbar, Roni Helou, and Dina Shaker are some of the few designers showcasing.
“We’re doing this to help the Lebanese designers who are not making any money right now due to the recent explosion in Lebanon,” he says. “We flew them in on our expenses so that they can sell their products. We’re not taking money and they are getting an opportunity to make a profit and sell their designs. But from the local designers like Okhtein and Kojak, we are taking from them. We have top of the line food and beverage companies serving as well. Every day starts at 3pm with panels, workshops, and the bazaar, and in the evening, we have a band from 8-12pm.Next year we plan to have bigger names in entertainment and fashion,” he says.
Mokbel’s success is really one of being self-made with lots of opportunities mixed in. He calls them mistakes but divine guidance and blessing has enabled him to be one of the top entertainment entrepreneurs in the Middle East. He has the know-how of putting together top concerts and events.