Forbes names seven Pakistanis in '30 Under 30 Asia 2024' list

Lahore-based Bushra Sultan has been acknowledged for challenging the country’s "constraints on women"

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Aleena Nadeem (left) and Kasra Zunnaiyyer (right). —Forbes/ File

Seven Pakistanis have been featured in the Forbes 30 Under 30 list for Asia 2024 including cinematographer and creative director Bushra Sultan, who has been placed in the Arts category. 

Lahore-based Sultan has been acknowledged for challenging the country’s “constraints on women”. She has collaborated with notable brands including the Pakistan Cricket Board and Xiomi Pakistan. 

Forbes highlights her campaign for Demesne Couture called "Guria" (doll) wherein she portrays how brides are controlled “like puppets” with strings attached to their hands. The magazine also lauded her her "Chimera" campaign that features “headless women”.

Bushra Sultan. —Forbes

Moreover, the loan providers Aleena Nadeem and Sarkhail Bawany have secured a place in the Finance and Venture Capital category of Forbes. 

Nadeem runs education startup, EduFi, in Lahore which helps students to pay their university fee on monthly-basis instead of the lump sum amount at the start of a semester.

“Nadeem, an MIT graduate who interned at McKinsey during college and then worked in London for Goldman Sachs and Ventura Capital, has been engaged with educational issues since high school.

“After a successful pilot launch in 2021, Edufi started disbursing loans earlier this year. Investors were convinced: EduFi's $6.1 million pre-seed round in November led by Zayn VC was the largest such round in Pakistani startup history,” said Forbes.

Bawany, on the other hand, heads the fintech company Abhi (now). The company gives workers the choice of withdrawing a percentage of their salary before the month end, in case of an emergency.

Abhi partners with companies to offer its services for their employees. It has expanded its branches in the Middle East and Bangladesh. “The company also issued $6.8 million in Islamic bonds in May 2023, following a $17 million Series A in 2022. Bawany is also CEO of the startup's payment services subsidiary, Abhipay.”

Kasra Zunnaiyyer is featured in the Enterprise Technology category, whereas Adeel Abid, Aizaz Nayyer, and Ali Raza, the cofounders of Karachi-based Linkstar have been featured in the Consumer Technology category.

Cofounder of Karachi-based Trukkr, Zunnaiyyer has found a solution for management of logistics in his country. Trukkr allows its consumers to “obtain financing, track their fleets and connect with customers”.

This company, as per Forbes, has caught foreign investors’ eye for being the first digital service targeting small and medium trucking corporations.

“It raised $6.4 million in 2023 in seed funding led by Washington-based Accion Venture Lab and London-based Sturgeon Capital,” the magazine reported.

Abid, Nayyer, Raza are the cofounders of Linkstar, which provides opportunities for freelancers, while the platform also features online courses for freelancers’ learning. The website allows to create portfolios for free.

Linkstar co-founders. — Forbes

“By the end of 2022, Linkstar raised an undisclosed pre-seed round from US-based SOSV. In 2023, the founders announced they had acquired Oliv, a Dubai-based career marketplace. Oliv helps companies hire students and graduates for internships, part-time work and after-graduation jobs.”