United Arab Emirates
"Abu Dhabi’s innovation ecosystem is an undeniable catalyst for achieving sustainable economic growth. Advancing diverse sectors through the creative minds of entrepreneurs stems from our work of building a self-sustaining ecosystem that startups, investors, businesses, and government can capitalize on in the pursuit of scaling disruptive technologies with real-world impact."
According to Hub71, Abu Dhabi’s global tech ecosystem, tech startups in its community secured AED 30 million ($8.2 million) across more than 20 corporate deals in 2021, with startups ramping up AED 1.5 billion ($40.8 million) in venture capital investment since the ecosystem’s inception in 2019. The aggregate valuation of Hub71 startups soared to AED 5.9 billion ($1.6 billion), demonstrating the growing impact of the local startup ecosystem on the UAE’s capital city.
Hub71and Hewlett Packard Enterprise are collaborating on a series of programs to nurture tech startups. The Abu Dhabi Investment Office (ADIO) is partnering with Microsoft and Plug and Play on a range of initiatives to help founders successfully scale their businesses. These include the Microsoft Growth X Accelerator, a virtual accelerator program, and engagement initiative Highway to 100 Unicorns. In 2021, the Khalifa Innovation Center became the first entity in the city to receive a license from the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development to operate as an incubator. As part of the Emirates Blockchain Strategy 2021, the UAE government is adopting Blockchain technology to conduct transactions with the aim of moving more than half of the government’s transactions to the Blockchain. In May 2021, telecommunications company Etisalat launched a Blockchain-based platform to prevent fraud in relation to trade invoices.
Recent fundraising news out of the ecosystem includes digital freight network TruKKer’s $96 million Series B in February 2022.
Ecosystem by the Numbers
Agtech & New Food
The UAE currently imports more than 85% of its food, making improving food security a top priority. Abu Dhabi has been at the heart of that push. Last year, the Abu Dhabi Investment Office announced more than AED 500 million ($136 million) in incentives to bring global Agtech companies to the city. ADQ recently announced plans to build an Agtech Park in Al Ain with the aim of positioning the UAE as the region’s leading farming hub. Hydroponic technology company Pure Harvest Smart Farms raised $64.5 million in October 2021.
Reasons to Move Your Startup to Abu Dhabi
Rule of Law
Selected Startup Organizations
Startup Genome Members
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