future foundation
The committee assessed DFDF's completion of 25+ investments since its 2022 inception and discussed the Dh1 billion Fund's mission to strengthen its capabilities. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: The Dh1 billion Dubai Future District Fund (DFDF), a collaborative effort between Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) and the Dubai Future Foundation (DFF), reiterated its commitment to enhance the Emirate’s venture capital ecosystem by driving sustainable finance and innovation on a global scale.

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Members of the DFDF Oversight Committee met Thursday to assess the Fund’s significant achievements and outline future strategies to enhance the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Dubai and the broader UAE.

The committee reviewed DFDF’s completion of over 25 investments since its inception in 2022 and discussed the Dh1 billion Fund’s mission to enhance the Fund’s capabilities.

DFDF also reinforced its commitment to sustainability and climate technology by earmarking up to 20 per cent of its Dh1 billion Fund for supporting climate technology and innovation in December 2023.

Since its establishment, the Fund has made 14 new investments in five startups, three follow-on investments, and six fund investments that are innovating in Dubai’s Future of Finance and Future Economies sectors.

DIFC Governor Essa Kazim said, “The Oversight Committee’s recognition of DFDF’s role in fostering scale-ups and the collaborative drive toward a sustainable future underscores the pivotal partnership between public and private sectors in shaping Dubai’s innovation trajectory.”

Arif Amiri, Chief Executive Officer, DIFC Authority and Board Member of DFDF, said: "DFDF stands as a beacon in Dubai's venture capital landscape, co-anchored by Dubai International Finance Centre. The fund’s commitment to climate technology, coupled with a strong investment strategy, has propelled over 25 ventures and continues to nurture international and Emirati talent through its bespoke venture-building programmes. This steadfast dedication marks DFDF as a driving force in shaping the future of sustainable innovation, talent and growth."

Khalfan Belhoul, Chairman of the Dubai Future District Fund’s Board of Directors and CEO of the Dubai Future Foundation said DFDF contributed significantly to strengthening the entrepreneurship scene in Dubai during the previous period.

He said, “During the coming period, the Fund will continue its efforts to provide an integrated system to support emerging companies and provide financing, expertise, guidance, and other support programmes such as business accelerators and capacity-building initiatives.”

The Committee emphasised the importance of supporting startups in their growth journey to become successful, internationally active scale-ups. UAE startups account for 52 per cent of all venture deals in the MENA region, with 44 per cent of all venture capital having a presence in the UAE.

Sharif El-Badawi, CEO of Dubai Future District Fund, said, “Our collaborations with DIFC and Dubai Future Foundation have been pivotal, aligning with the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050 and UAE Net Zero 2050 to propel over 25 ventures and cultivate a diverse talent pool. “ Jacques Visser, Chief Legal Officer at the DIFC Authority, was also at the meeting.