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The Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED) and United Arab Emirates University (UAEU) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to launch the Abu Dhabi Family Business Index, the first of its kind in the region.

The two parties will also cooperate to strengthen the Emirate's economic intelligence and research infrastructure, providing insights into economic diversification and growth.

The Abu Dhabi Family Business Index will measure and rank various metrics related to family-owned and family-controlled businesses in Abu Dhabi, such as performance and influence. Plans are to expand the index's scope to the wider region and world.

The index will include revenue, industry, employment, governance structures, leadership gender ratios, succession planning, longevity, and overall contribution to socio-economic development.

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The Abu Dhabi Family Business Index is expected to be of immense value to investors, policymakers, academics, and members of the public. It will provide an understanding of the role and impact of family businesses in the economy and society, potentially shaping future strategies and decisions.

It will also support efforts to increase the contribution of family businesses to economic diversification and growth.

In 2022, Abu Dhabi issued a Family Business Ownership Governance Law to further enhance the legislative ecosystem by adopting a more flexible and sustainable economic model. This law facilitates the transition to successive generations in line with best international governance practices.

Rashed Abdulkarim Al Blooshi, Undersecretary of ADDED said: "This strategic cooperation between ADDED and UAEU is a significant step forward in propelling Abu Dhabi's research and development efforts. The Abu Dhabi Family Business Index will play a pivotal role in developing the business landscape by providing valuable insights about this significant segment of our socio-economic fabric.

"By combining UAEU's academic expertise and research capabilities with ADDED's knowledge and mandate as the catalyst for economic growth and diversification, this collaboration promises to deliver impactful results that benefit the Abu Dhabi community and solidify the Emirate's position as a leading centre for innovation and economic growth," added Al Blooshi.

The agreement between ADDED and UAEU also includes cooperation in evidence-based economic and financial research, exchanging experts to foster knowledge sharing, joint research activities, training, and workshops, and sharing research publications.

The MoU aligns with both entities' shared commitment to enhancing Abu Dhabi's research capabilities and strengthening cooperation across the Emirate's economic ecosystem.