Monthly Archives: November 2014

Ajeti’s Cookie Factory: Kosovar Family Bonding Leads to Success

According to a recent study of KFW (Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau: Credit Institute for Redevelopment), an increasing number of Germany’s population with an immigration background establish businesses. One successful example is Gezim Ajeti, a Diaspora member who left Kosovo when he was only 13 years old. Today, he is successfully leading his Keksfabrikation (cookie production) in Germany.

Three years ago, Gezim Ajeti fulfilled his dream of being self-employed and is very thankful for his family’s support during the first tough year. His business has up to 16 workers, but his core team includes: his parents, wife, brother, and sister in law. Even today, if a big order comes in and things must be done quickly, he can count on his family. In Germany, setting up a company based on family solidarity is indeed a rare phenomenon and quite unique!

Cookies at Ajeti's Keksfabrikation

Cookies at Ajeti’s Keksfabrikation

Gezim enjoys mixing ingredients and trying out new recipes. His specialties are traditional German cookies, of which he produces up to 200.000 a day.  Mr. Ajeti decided to name his company after his own name, with the aim of identifying his work with his heritage.

FC Barcelona’s Kosovo Boy

The football giant FC Barcelona might have thousands of fans in Kosovo, but it also has a young Kosovar in its ranks, Labinot Kabashi. Even though he is only 14, Kabashi has already shown clear signs of outstanding talent. Born in Skenderaj,Kosovo, Labinot is the first Albanian ever to play for FC Barcelona.

Labinot’s family had been part of the great exodus of Albanians during the 1999 war in Kosovo. Once they settled in Catalunya, Labinot quickly started working on his dream of playing for a major league football team. In the 2010-11 season, Kabashi had joined the D Youngsters who were run by Alex Gomez and a season later, he played for the Jordi Font .

Despite playing in the B team, Labinot Kabashi was summoned to play with the A of Marcel Sans prestigious MIC Football 11, playing a crucial role in the semifinals with a goal against Manchester United . Labinot’s career has had a jump start with his score against Borusia Dortumnd at the Arona tournament.

Have a look at a video coverage of Labinot’s skills:

Alban Merdani Makes His National Television Debut on NBC’s Hit Show The Blacklist

Rising star Alban Merdani is making his national TV debut on the NBC hit show “The Blacklist” (side by side Megan Boone), as the new, hot stuff, smooth talking, international weapons dealer in episode 7. The Blacklist is directed by the very talented Karen Gaviola and it will air on Monday, November 3, 2014 (10:00-11pm ET), on NBC.

“The Blacklist” is a production of Sony Pictures Television and Davis Entertainment. Jon Bokenkamp (“The Call,” “Taking Lives”), John Eisendrath (“Alias”), John Davis (“Predator,” “I, Robot,” “Chronicle”), John Fox and Michael Watkins (“The X-Files”) serve as executive producers.

“Being on the set of The Blacklist and part of its wonderful cast of actors was an experience I will never forget. I have wanted to be part of the show from the beginning, since the inception of the show and its introduction to the public. Dreams do come true. It all comes down to Persistence. As President Calvin Coolidge once said ‘persistence and determination alone are omnipotent,’” stated actor Alban Merdani.

During his successful career, Alban Merdani has established himself as an amazing actor, a lovable villain and a good director. Born and raised in Albania until the age of 15, Alban was destined for greater things. In the early 1990’s his family moved to America, and he has called this place home ever since. Birthed during the reign of the communist regime, any opportunities to explore and develop artistic talents were nonexistent and always denied.

After moving to America it was during his late teenage years when Alban started to become fascinated and fall in love with the form of all storytelling, be it in film, TV, or stage. He earned his Bachelor degree in Dramatic Arts at CUNY and continued his professional training as an actor under the tutelage of Terry Knickerbocker at the William Esper Studio where he completed a two year intense Meisner program. He has also trained with Maggie Flanigan, as well as with Shane Ann Younts in her Voive, Speech and Shakespeare program. Having lived his life between two very different countries and cultures, Alban has gathered many experiences and traits that have enriched his character.

Alban Merdani has enjoyed success on the stage and in film. He is an incredibly versatile and gifted actor with impressive skills. Some of his notable credits include stage: A Doll’s House (American Theatre of Actors), The Boxer’s Son (Theatre for the New City), Marat Sade (Shetler Studios Theatre 54), The Lark, Rabbit Hole (William Esper Studio); TV/film: “The Blacklist” NBC, “The Lonely Boys”, “The White Russian”, “Collateral Package’, “Celebrity Ghost Stories”, etc.

In addition to acting, Alban Merdani is also interested in directing films. He served as first assistant director in the 2014 short film, “A Certain Kind of Love”. (

“I have an interest in directing as well because I am intrigued by the actors’ process. As part of my artistic vision I am always seeking ways to understand and communicate with actors in more sufficient, different and artistic ways,” added the talented actor and aspiring director Alban Merdani.

By Karen White, New York