Hub71 launches new programme to drive opportunities for startups - GulfToday

Hub71 launches new programme to drive opportunities for startups


The roadshow aims at strengthening Abu Dhabi’s innovation cluster to accelerate the emirate’s digital transformation.

Gulf Today, Staff Reporter

Hub71, Abu Dhabi’s global tech ecosystem, is doubling down on scaling startups and enabling founders by introducing a value creation programme. Tech startups from around the world will benefit from increased access to market as Hub71 actively facilitates business opportunities to enable their sustainable growth, globally.

Hub71 launches its programme by embarking on a four-month roadshow across the emirate to create opportunities for collaboration with leading Abu Dhabi corporates, particularly assets under Mubadala Investment Company and ADQ’s portfolio, as well as local and federal government agencies that govern and regulate national priority sectors and industries. The roadshow aims at strengthening Abu Dhabi’s innovation cluster and reinforcing Hub71’s intention to partner with like-minded organisations that share its mission to accelerate the emirate’s digital transformation.

Building on Hub71’s Corporate Engagement programme, the global tech ecosystem is launching a new annual partners challenge, “The Outliers”, supported by leading entities in the public and private sectors to search for the boldest ideas to solve real challenges. This will foster new opportunities for startups worldwide to work alongside and support Abu Dhabi’s leading corporations and government agencies across various sectors, solving industry challenges with innovative new concepts. The initiative aims to build a solid pipeline of high-quality startups to consider doing business and relocating to Abu Dhabi.


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Hanan Harhara Al Yafei, CEO of Hub71, said, “Global tech startups can contribute to the innovation blueprint of Abu Dhabi by applying solutions to challenges that shift the status quo and influence the future direction of our economy and talent pool.

“Our upcoming roadshow opens the door of opportunity to partner with Abu Dhabi’s leading giants and government agencies, with the aim of providing seamless market access opportunities for startups. Together, we can influence a shift in mindset away from the traditional way of doing business to embracing a more risk-taking approach that promotes innovative corporate strategies.”

Hub71 is teaming up with Etihad Airways, Department of Health Abu Dhabi, Thales, Mastercard, ADCB and Mashreq Bank, to attract ambitious startups and exceptional founders from around the world to compete to be selected as The Outliers helping partners solve their business challenges and optimise their operational plans.

Hub71 will enable corporates and government partners to select the best startups and technology enterprises to help them stay at the forefront of their industries. Meanwhile, participating startups will benefit from more opportunities to work closely with corporates and partners, accessing a ripe marketplace ready to embrace innovation as part of their business models.

The challenges are aimed at later-stage startups that have proven products and will be engaged with developing proof of concepts (POCs) that have strong potential to commercialise and go-to-market. Each winning startup will also gain the opportunity to join a growing and diverse community, participate in a Demo Day, raise funding and have faster access to the Hub71 Incentive Programme.

Reinforcing Hub71’s commitment to bolstering talent, the tech ecosystem will also engage its academic partners to provide expert mentors from faculty and its alumni base, to guide and support the participating startup founders.

“No matter what challenges are set, we believe startups can translate their bold thinking into tangible solutions that respond to larger organisations’ challenges. Joining forces with like-minded organisations that are prioritising the benefits of technology will enable us to enhance the way our corporate and government partners operate, while simultaneously enabling startups worldwide to benefit from Abu Dhabi’s tech offerings”, added Al Yafei.

Etihad Airways, the UAE national airline, has recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Hub71, Abu Dhabi’s global tech ecosystem, to support the expansion of entrepreneurs innovating in Abu Dhabi. The agreement makes Etihad the official airline partner of Hub71 which will offer more than 100 global startups within its tech community special rates and access to a dedicated booking platform to simplify their travel needs. Mohammad Al Bulooki, Chief Operating Officer of Etihad Aviation Group, said, “Etihad is looking forward to collaborating with Hub71, a flagship initiative of Ghadan 21, Abu Dhabi’s accelerator programme. Together, both entities will play a vital role in supporting the Emirate’s development by investing in business, innovation and people.”

The MoU will support the government’s efforts in diversifying the economy by rewarding businesses who choose to develop innovative technologies in Abu Dhabi. Through the partnership, Etihad will tap into Hub71’s dynamic, fast-growing community and global network of partners to engage with its startup founders and entrepreneurs to launch innovation-driven activities. The airline will also explore mentorship opportunities, workshops, and community events.


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