Dubai: Dubai Startup Hub recorded a 236 percent year-over-year surge in membership during the first half of 2020. Membership in the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry initiative reached 1,568 in H1-2020, compared to 466 in the same period last year.
UAE nationals accounted for a quarter of all Dubai Startup Hub beneficiaries, with 30 Emirati entrepreneurs now a step closer to launching their businesses after graduating from the first-ever Emirati Development Programme earlier this year.
The hub’s “performance and achievements reflects the strong entrepreneurial spirit that exists in the UAE, as well as the crucial role that startups are playing in bringing unique business concepts that fill market gaps,” said Hamad Buamim, President & CEO of Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
The startup programme collaborated with more than 70 business incubators in countries such as India, USA, UK, Russia, Hungary, Germany and China, and received more than 50 percent of international startup applications for its core programmes.
Among new members, Dubai Startup Hub attracted a large volume of high-potential startups specialising in fintech, healthtech, education, and e-commerce, signaling a resurgence in entrepreneurial activity. It witnessed growing interest and record participation among international startups, and within the Indian, Chinese and African markets in particular.
Going forward, startups and SMEs will have a major role to play building the UAE’s post-Covid-19 economy and developing new industries, Buamim said, as this segment of the business community serves as an “engine driving innovation and supporting the country’s transition to a digitally-driven economy.”
The Dubai Chamber chief noted that the pandemic had created an opportunity for technology startups, in particular, for those that have demonstrated greater resilience.