Abu Dhabi’s tech hub sees surge of curiosity from start-ups

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Abu Dhabi’s tech hub sees surge of curiosity from start-ups



Basic view of Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, January 3, 2019. Image taken January 3, 2019. REUTERS/ Hamad I Mohammed/File Photograph/File PhotoDUBAI, Oct 19 (Reuters) – Abu Dhabi’s new expertise hub says it has seen a surge in curiosity from start-up companies within the United Arab Emirates and overseas regardless of the financial affect of the coronavirus pandemic final 12 months, amid elevated optimism from the sector.Hub71, backed by Abu Dhabi state fund Mubadala Funding Co, the SoftBank Imaginative and prescient Fund, and Microsoft (MSFT.O), has accepted 100 start-up companies since its inception in 2019 after a variety course of that drew about 3,500 purposes, stated Hub71 chief working officer Jida Itani.”Regardless of COVID and every thing else, begin ups proceed to use. In reality we’ve got seen a surge particularly sectors which have been accelerated by the pandemic like well being tech, schooling tech and fintech,” Itani stated.Begin-ups have change into inspired to base themselves within the UAE following a handful of successes by native expertise firms, as buyers seek for potential tech unicorns – privately held start-ups with a valuation of greater than $1 billion — within the Center East, she stated.Anghami, a Center East and North Africa-focused rival to Spotify, grew to become a goal for a so-called particular function acquisition firm (SPAC) earlier this 12 months and is slated for an inventory on the Nasdaq alternate in New York.Careem, a Center East and Asia journey hailing app, was acquired by Uber for $3.1 billion in 2020, which was the most important exit for a startup from the area. Amazon in 2017 acquired e-commerce market Souq.com for $580 million.Begin-ups had been additionally inspired to base themselves in Abu Dhabi resulting from help offered by Hub71, which was prolonged to all firms based mostly within the hub in the course of the pandemic.Firms had been provided free workplace house, housing and insurance coverage for all their workers, Itani stated.Hub71 has introduced in round 19 enterprise capital funds which have a mixed $2 billion to $2.5 bln of property underneath administration, with a pool of available capital that may be deployed to Hub71’s firms, she stated.Hub71, positioned within the emirate’s monetary district, is a flagship initiative of Abu Dhabi’s 50 billion dirham ($13.6 billion) Ghadan 21 stimulus programme launched in 2018 to speed up financial progress.Reporting by Hadeel Al Sayegh, Modifying by William MacleanOur Requirements: The Thomson Reuters Belief Rules.



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