Celebrating Entrepreneurs: Sky is the limit for these Inspiring Women

  • 19 Nov - 25 Nov, 2022
  • Mag The Weekly
  • Feature

Every year we celebrate Women Entrepreneurship Day on November 19 to praise the contribution of successful businesswomen who changed the meaning of success with their tremendous career growth. Here we list down 10 notable Pakistani boss women who have always inspired us with their unwavering strength and daring approach.

Zeelaf Munir – CEO of English Biscuits Manufacturers

Zeelaf Munir is the CEO and Managing Director of English Biscuits Manufacturers, the largest biscuit manufacturing and distribution company of Pakistan. She is first woman to get elected as the chairperson of the executive council of Pakistan Advertisers’ Society (PAS). In a career span of over 20 years, Zeelaf has taken EBM to the next level with her dynamic approach and the great enterprising skills. She was also recently named as one of the Regional Titans of F&B.

Maheen Rahman – CEO at InfraZamin Pakistan

Maheen Rahman was appointed the Chief Executive Officer of InfraZamin Pakistan in 2020 and has played a crucial part in setting up IZP’s base operations and its initial structure. Maheen has over twenty years of experience in investment banking, research and asset management. In her previous appointment, Maheen Rahman served as the Chief Executive of Alfalah GHP Investment Management where, under her leadership, Alfalah Investments has grown to be one of the largest asset management companies in Pakistan. She ranked fifth in Forbes 'Top 40 under 40' in 2016. In addition to her extensive work experience and professional achievements, Maheen holds a Bachelor of Science (Hons) degree in Economics from the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) and a Master of Science in Finance and Economics from Warwick Business School in the UK.

Naz Mansha - CEO of Nishat Linen

Naz Mansha is the CEO of Nishat Linen and Chairperson of Nishat Mills Limited. She has over 30 years' experience as a Director on the Board of different companies. In addition, she is the Chairperson of DG Khan Cement Company Limited. She is the guiding force who introduced the concept of Nishat Linen and Nishat Mills by starting a home furnishing stitching concept and soon built it into an empire of fabric.

Masarrat Misbah — Founder of MM Makeup/Depilex group

Masarrat Misbah is a Pakistani beautician, entrepreneur and philanthropist. She later established Depilex Smileagain Foundation, a nonprofit organization. In 2010, she became the recipient of the Pride of Performance award for her contributions in the field of medical treatment and financial aid reportedly provided to the burn and acid attack victims for females in particular.

Aisha Sarwari - Director Public Affairs, Communications and Sustainability (Pakistan & Afghanistan) at Coca Cola

Aisha Sarwari is the author of three published books, a globally acclaimed public speaker, and is a diversity advocate. She also has over 17+ years of professional experience as a communications leader in global organizations like VEON, USAID, Adam Smith International and UNCTAD funded, WAIPA.org. Her work took her to the US, Turkey, UAE and Pakistan. She has 500+ published and has featured in opinions for global media houses like the Guardian and BBC.

Shazia Syed - Global EVP - Beverages at Unilever

Shazia Syed is a Pakistani businesswoman who is currently Global EVP - Beverages at Unilever. She was chairperson and CEO of the Unilever Pakistan Limited, in office from November 2015 till February 2020. Prior to that she served as chairperson of the Unilever Sri Lanka from November 2013 to October 2015. In her 30 years with the organization, she has worked across all departments and divisions of the company.

Shehnaz Basit- COO at Gul Ahmed

She is the woman who has turned an ordinary fabric, lawn, into a ‘popular entity’. She began her journey right after her graduation from the National College of Arts in Lahore and has been with Gul Ahmed since then. Shehnaz gives credit to her mother for all her success in life.

Sima Kamil - Deputy Governor at State Bank of Pakistan,

The current Deputy Governor of State Bank of Pakistan, Sima Kamil has been considered as an icon in the banking sector that paved the way for many others in the area. With the experience of over three decades in the banking industry, Kamil has served on the key positions. She has worked in various international banks including American Express Bank, ANZ Grindlays Bank and Standard Chartered Bank in areas of Corporate Banking and Risk Management. Before joining SBP, Ms. Kamil was the first-ever woman appointed President of a private sector commercial bank - United Bank Limited. Earlier she served Habib Bank Limited for 16 years at various senior management levels, including Head of Corporate & Investment Banking and then Head of Branch Banking. She was also the director of First MicroFinance Bank. She holds a key position in the board of governors of Karachi Grammar School, and is a board member of the Notre Dame Institute of Education and the governing body of Holy Family Hospital in Karachi.

Musharraf Hai - Advisor Branding and Marketing at Khaadi

The prolific businesswoman, Musharraf Hai holds the position of Advisor Branding and Marketing at Pakistan’s leading retail brand, Khaadi. She was the ex-Chairman of Unilever Pakistan and also headed Loreal Pakistan for quite some time. A graduate of London School of Economics and Boston University, Hai joined the Marketing Department of Unilever Pakistan in 1983 and later designated to serve at Unilever Headquarters in London, where she worked for Unilever’s East Asia-Pacific and Africa/Middle East operations.

Sultana Siddiqui – Director at Hum Network

She is a Pakistani media mogul, television director, and producer and the founder of Hum Network Limited. She started her career as a producer for PTV, Karachi Studios in 1974 and founded HUM Network, which became one of the top 25 Companies acknowledged by the Pakistan Stock Exchange in 2010. She is also the recipient of Pakistan’s coveted award, Sitara-e-Imtiaz