Previous winner Interview with GamUp

2nd October 2019

GamUp with their Award


We caught up with our Outstanding Gamification Rookie 2018 Award winner, GamUp!

Carry on reading to find out about what a regular day is like for Emad and Sandra and how it felt to win the Outstanding Rookie award in 2018!


Would you be able to tell us a little more about GamUp?

GamUp is a Gamification company, based in Egypt yet serves MENA region as well, and is an Exclusive partner in Egypt with the UK Gamification company, Gamification+ LTD.

We provide well designed playful training and workshops, having UK certified trainers, the founders Dr. Emad Henin &  I, Eng. Sandra Abadir have more than 9 years’ experience in the world of Games , GBLs & Gamification project designs.

We are also Exclusive partner in Egypt and MENA Region with The Hungarian Business Simulation Company "EcoSim".

We also provide consultancy to companies who would want to gamify their processes or startups who want to gamify their projects, websites or applications , as well as that we also work on gamifying content for trainers and educators.

We are also committee members at GamFed - the International Gamification Confederation and were speakers at the NASAGA- North American Simulation and Gaming Association, Rochester, New York, Rise Up- MENA region's largest innovation and entrepreneurship summit, Tedx and UNESCO.

Our ultimate mission is to Boost your Business Up, Enhance your learning process Up, and Lift your personal life Up , we totally believe that “Play helps us do serious things much much better”

One of our interesting products is the “Gamified web based Learning Management System" was nominated for an award at Gamicon, Chicago, and as you already know, we won the “Gamification Rookie Award” in Gamification Europe 2018.

Can you tell us what a regular day is like for Emad & Sandra? 

Oh yeah! We would call a typical day a sweet and sour, a hectic yet exciting and that’s basically because we both are full timers, Emad is a full time HR Partner while I am an architectural engineer, yet almost daily we continue working on our Gamification passion every day after work and in weekends, whether through meetings, planning courses, or gamifying content. Although this might sound tiring and hectic but every time we switch to the GamUp time it feels like we wore our capes and ready to change the world, it’s true that you can always find energy for things you are most passionate about!

What made you decide to enter the Outstanding Gamification Rookie Award?

Well, this award category requirements was a company who has been running less than a year yet has created an impact so we decided to list down our achievements and milestones in that year and we were surprised and proud when we did so and here you go:

  • We created International partnerships- Exclusive partnership with Gamification+, UK, and EcoSim for Business Simulation, Hungary.
  • We self-dependently designed our website, logo, brand, posters, and all marketing tools and we became a well-known gamification brand - that we receive many resumes of high calibres to work with us & became one of the pioneers in Gamification in Egypt .
  • Both of us Accomplished Train Of Trainer Diploma accredited by SHRM.
  • Sandra accomplished Digital Marketing Diploma, and Emad finished his MBA degree.
  • Designing our own digital and non-digital games for enhancing the educational experience-such as  "Where to Spy for Horus Eye", "Mission Possible" etc.
  • Consulting many startups in Egypt and Jordan.
  • We  were interviewed in a Radio Program called مش سهلة "Uneasy" about how we started and what we faced  as well as took it as an opportunity to raise the awareness about Gamifictaion using MENA region examples and how practically it can help the society.
  • We Conducted many workshops for startups and huge corporate in Egypt and Jordan.
  • Sandra wrote many articles for Gamification awareness

Our breakthrough was:

  • Innovating a “Ramadan inspired-Theme” to raise awareness of Gamification & named it “Ramadanation” - to raise the awareness of Gamification in the MENA region through these episodes.
  • Our gamified LMS Project have been shortlisted for Global Award in GamiCon Conference, Chicago USA.
  • We have been selected to be speakers in international prestigious conference that is annually held since 60s; NASAGA 2018 Rochester, USA.
  • What did you do to prepare for the award?

    The time was very tight for us as we were preparing for our session in NASAGA, New York, with all its logistics, printings, game designs etc ... We had to video tape a 3 mins video for the award submission- so we decided to do so when we arrived to Rochester but unluckily the weather was so windy, it was raining on the camera lens and freezing cold yet we didn’t have a suitable indoor area to record so we decided to go through it and consider it an adventure.

    And later on we created a bloopers video titled “windy, rainy with no SUN yet no matter what we Just had FUN”. You can find the bloopers video here!

    How did it feel to win the award?

    It was absolutely a remarkable feeling after all that we went through this award made us feel it is definitely worth all the sleepless nights and the tiring days and motivated us to just keep pushing and aim higher!

    How did winning the award change GamUp? 

    Winning a global award has been surely life changing; we created a new product Event called “Game Jam Night” for non- digital games and took it as a chance to celebrate our award and First year company anniversary in a gamified way, highlighting that “Not all heroes wear capes some just have more patience and persistence”.

     It has also added a competitive edge to our company since being a global award holder gives you more credibility and an outstanding status.

    What causes would you like to support in the near of far future?

    We are definitely looking forward to support sustainability and help save our planet through gamification, we are also very passionate to Gamify tourism and help grab more attention to our beautiful country Egypt – it’s so much more beyond the pyramids, we have historic (Jewish, Christian & Islamic) temples, beaches of the red sea and the Mediterranean ,the river Nile and so much more. We have plenty more plans and surprises that will create a huge BUZZ in the region so follow us to stay updated!

    How will you continue to promote gamification as a winner of The Gamification Awards? 

    We already do so by trying to be part of the large events such as Tedx, where my talk was “Gamify for a better world” and Emad as well spoke at UNESCO, powered by the ministry of youth about “Gamification for Social Entrepreneurship”. So as long as we find an opportunity that would help the society to progress we’ll definitely join to promote Gamification further.

    Would you be open to mentoring younger gamifiers?

    Definitely , we have had the chance to mentor younger generations even ones in school with very promising gamification projects, as well as we empower those who can’t afford our services with our knowledge. And have recently started accepting interns and are working on creating impactful programs about our Gamification field to help spreading knowledge to the younger gamifiers.

    Finally, what advice would you give to someone entering the 2019 awards?

    Never underestimate what you are capable of and how far you’ve been progressing, so aim high, yet stay grounded, celebrate every milestone of your progress and not just the finale and remember always that “Rewards should celebrate the achievement not be the achievement!”. Good Luck!

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