Yasmine Shihata, an Egyptian and UK national, was born in Kuwait and went to international schools in Vienna, Austria and Washington D.C. She attended university in London, where she graduated from the London School of Economics (LSE) with a degree in International Relations. Having had a passion for fashion, art and magazines from a young age, she interned at Vogue and Marie Claire magazine in London while a student at LSE.
Yasmine began her professional life in New York City, where she joined Vogue magazine as senior assistant to the Editor in Chief, Anna Wintour. This demanding position exposed her to the corporate magazine world and the intricacies of magazine production and public relations. Upon her return to Cairo, Yasmine founded Egypt’s first English language lifestyle publication: Cleo magazine. Cleo magazine was a hit from its inception, as it tapped into a virgin market and met the needs and aspirations of Egypt’s emerging sophisticated and modern culture. Yasmine’s success in her first venture cemented her status as the preeminent pioneer and authority in Egypt’s English language lifestyle magazine market.
A short time later, Yasmine sold her shares in Cleo, which has now been discontinued. In 2001, in partnership with three of Egypt’s most prominent businessmen, Yasmine launched Enigma magazine, the Arab region’s glossy lifestyle magazine for sophisticated Arab men and women with an international outlook. Enigma quickly became the region’s leading English lifestyle magazine.
Today, besides being a print publication, eniGma is the first magazine in the Middle East to be available in full online, side by side with its continuously updated dynamic online platform that includes video clips of our cover and fashion shoots, interviews, and photos from social events, as well as a comprehensive archive of past magazine features. With a market presence spanning 18 years, eniGma has become the leading pan-Arab lifestyle English language magazine, featuring the region’s most dynamic celebrities, entrepreneurs, fashion and interior designers, and trendy destinations. The magazine is distributed in Egypt, Kuwait, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Bahrain, Qatar, Jordan, Oman, and London.
In 2002, Yasmine launched Enigma’s PR and events division to bring the glamorous world of eniGma magazine to life. The eniGma PR division has hosted exclusive events in Cairo, London, Dubai and, most recently, Los Angeles. The events included a 2000 person celebration at the foot of the Pyramids of Giza on the occasion of the 5th anniversary of Enigma magazine with a performance by Bryan Adams, and an even larger celebration of the magazine’s 10th anniversary, also at the Pyramids, with a performance by Kylie Minogue for 3,000 people.