In just five years, Sheraa has led Sharjah’s development of a founder-focused ecosystem anchored in the belief that anyone is capable of bringing impactful change to their community and the world.
With one of the most attractive investment climates and fastest-growing economies in MENA, Sharjah has attracted the attention of global investors and founders. Its strategic location in proximity to promising emerging markets, favorable business environment, and commitment to supporting startups has created a thriving innovation ecosystem. The emirate is home to several top-ranked higher education institutions and MENA’s fastest growing technopark, Sharjah Research Innovation and Technology Park (SRTI Park). The Sharjah Entrepreneurship Center (Sheraa) launched in 2016 with a mandate to build a world-class entrepreneurship ecosystem in Sharjah. It’s annual flagship event, the Sharjah Entrepreneurship Festival, nurtures a culture of innovation and cooperation in the ecosystem and has become one of the region's largest entrepreneurship events. Sheraa recently launched the Sharjah Startup Studio (S3), the first government-backed startup studio in the UAE. S3 supports social impact entrepreneurs and operates under a revenue-sharing model, in which entrepreneurs receive $30,000 in pre-seed funding but retain full ownership of their businesses. Investors’ confidence in Sharjah continues to grow, with $220 million worth of projects initiating in 2020, a 60% increase between Q3 and Q4. This increase can be attributed to the ecosystem of support entities that help foreign investors access the emirate, such as the Sharjah Investors Services Center (SAEED), an initiative of Sharjah FDI (Invest in Sharjah). The Sharjah Government has also committed around $500 million in R&D investment to solidify the emirates’ potential as an innovation leader. This investment led to the launch of SRTI Park. which offers a full-service support system, Open Innovation Lab, and makerspace.
Ecosystem by the numbers
Digital & Creative Industries
Advanced Manufacturing & Robotics
With a strong manufacturing sector, Sharjah was ranked the 8th fastest-growing city in the world from 2015 to 2020 by the Economist Intelligence Unit. It recently established an advanced manufacturing and robotics center of excellence at the $150 million Sharjah Research Innovation and Technology Park. The center will work with founders, small and medium enterprises, and academia to pilot advanced manufacturing and robotics technologies in real-world demonstrations.
Reasons to move your startup to Sharjah
Highly Skilled Talent
Business-friendly Regulatory Environment
Market Access and Infrastructure
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