By Abigail Flynn
Transforming abandoned tires and old washing machine drums into living room furniture, Ibrahim Abougendy ’14 turns trash into treasure with the startup he co-founded, Mobikya. Abougendy upcycles waste materials into colorful and comfortable handmade furniture, such as chairs, mirrors and couches.
Abougendy also co-founded two other startups that utilize eco-friendly and biodegradable designs. His water bottle line, Qarura, uses a special clay mix “pottery” that boosts the alkaline content in water and requires less energy in production, while his pottery-based coffee brewing tools from his company Gahawena require less energy than traditional copper.
Outside of the home, Abougendy’s work supports local animals. He helped design shelters out of tires, or “Sheltires,” which optimize the heat-trapping capacity of rubber tires to offer a warm retreat for stray cats.
“Waste is actually raw material,” Abougendy said. “What keeps me persistent against all odds is my passion to be an accelerator for a paradigm shift to happen.”