Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Haaris D. Sa'ad of Startup Grind Yola, North-East Nigeria

Mar 5, 2021, 10:00 – 11:00 PM

Join Startup Grind Grand Rapids’ Chapter Director Corey Hart and Beneventure Partners Managing Director Yorgo Katsanos as we host an event series featuring check-ins with investors and Startup Grind Chapter Directors from all corners of the world. Joining us for this event: Haaris D. Sa'ad of Startup Grind Yola, North-East Nigeria

Virtual event

About this event


Through our Startup Grind event series Hunting for Silver Linings, we check in with ecosystem builders, investors, and business leaders from around the world.

We dig for deeper context around challenges and opportunities found in markets around the world, as well as mine for insight that can better inform biases about regions, their talent, and potential for investment.

Then, we connect the dots.


Corey Hart | LinkedIn
Chapter Director, Startup Grind
Co-founder & CMO, Telebehavioral Health.US

Yorgo (George) Katsanos
Managing Director, Beneventure Partners


Friday, February 26th, we are pleased to host Haaris D. Sa'ad of Startup Grind Yola, North-East Nigeria. Haaris will give us some insight on how the epidemic is affecting the startup and entrepreneurial ecosystem in his region, as well as provide advice to entrepreneurs.

Haaris D. Sa'ad is the Founder/CEO of an entrepreneurship hub called HDSG StartUp HUB (part of a nine-member business support structure called HDSG BusinessGROUP, with HQ in Abuja, but operations in the North-east of Nigeria. 

He serves on the board of several non-profits, including being a founding board member of an NGO in Yola, North-east Nigeria called the Community Initiative for Socio-Economic Empowerment - CISEE). 

He is the pioneer Chapter Director for Startup Grind in Yola. 

A Logistician by training, he is an alumnus of the Development Bank of Nigeria Entrepreneurship Training Programme (DBN - ETP 2020 Cohort), Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Training Programme (TEEP - TEF/UNDP SAHEL 2019 Cohort), a trained 'COVID-19 Ambassador' for the Mohammed Bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences (MBRU) 'Let's Stop the Spread of COVID-19 Initiative'- UAE, MSME consultant, a Digital Ecosystem Master (or 'DEM' Coach) and Content creator, but most importantly, an ENTREPRENEUR.

At age six, he started his first business by renting out his bicycle to his peers to ride over a fixed distance for less than a cent, way back in North-East Nigeria where he lived with his single mum and grandma. He'll make about a dollar in total by the end of the day, rush back home to his grandma, all excited, who was his first business coach. That experience was the genesis of a perspective that would eventually change his life completely.

Haaris lives by three principles - Learn, Do, Teach...! 

He's on a mission to disrupt the 'Status Quo' in the North East of Nigeria from a civil servant based society to a vibrant community of start-up entrepreneurs, with a goal to nurture 1000 start-ups over the next 10 years, from 2021 - 2030. 


We spend our time checking in with investors, entrepreneurs, founders, and Startup Grind Chapter Directors from around the globe to get accounts of what's happening in their areas and learn of what their challenges and opportunities are. 

  • We learn about our guest, their story
  • We dig into their area & industry of expertise, and their ecosystem
  • We identify specific challenges & opportunities they are close to
  • We ask what their outlook is for the next 6, 12 months
  • Finally, we ask how our network of global Directors, entrepreneurs, and investors can help them

Check out what happened


  • Haaris D. Sa'ad

    Startup Grind Yola, NE Nigeria

    Chapter Director



Friday, March 5, 2021
10:00 PM – 11:00 PM UTC


Podcast Interview


  • Corey Hart

    Startup Grind Grand Rapids

    Chapter Director

  • Yorgo Katsanos

    Beneventure Partners



  • Corey Hart, Startup Grind

    Startup Grind

    Chapter Director

  • Renee De Haan

    Principal Financial Group

    Chapter Co-director

  • Vanessa Mahoney

    Chapter Co-Director

  • Margaret Periard

    Startup & Venture Capital Intern

  • Whitney Allred

    WhitMarie Media

    Social Media Manager

Global sponsor

Dell Technologies logo

Dell Technologies

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