Egyptian Start-up Offers End-to-End Undertaking Service

SourceAsharq AL-awsat

Employees of Sokna funeral service company stand near service desk of Quran and prayer beads during training amid the coronavirus pandemic on the outskirts of Cairo, Egypt May 19, 2021. (Reuters)

An Egyptian start-up is looking to shake up the undertaking sector by offering a full package of funeral and burial services to clients it finds at hospitals.

For a price, Sokna – Arabic for “calm” or “repose” – says it gives the bereaved space to mourn, free from the usual logistics and bureaucracy. This can be stressful in Egypt, partly due to the Muslim custom of burying people swiftly after death.

Sokna gets nearly 90% of its clients through deals with 15 hospitals, circumventing established networks for services to the newly bereaved.

One of the company’s agents, 23-year-old Mariam Mohamed, waited one recent afternoon at a table in a hospital lobby in Dokki, near central Cairo, ready to offer potential customers a menu of burial packages.

Bundles range from 4,500 to 9,000 more...