Dubai invests $32m in 19 Dubai Future Accelerators projects

Dubai has allocated AED 120 million ($32m) in investment to 19 out of 30 companies taking part in the Dubai Future Accelerators programme hosted by the Dubai Future Foundation and the Government of Dubai.

The pilot projects, which are expected to create 135 job opportunities in Dubai over the next three months, are focused on seven strategic sectors – education, health, infrastructure, transport, technology, energy, and security.

HE Mohammed Abdullah Al Gergawi, vice-chairman of the board of trustees, and managing director of Dubai Future Foundation, also announced that five new government and private entities – Department of Economic Development, Dubai Smart City, General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs, Etisalat, and du – would take part in the second round of the DFA programme.

"Led by the outstanding success of the first session of the Accelerator programme, with 19 companies from 30 selected for their economic, innovative and scientific value, HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has instructed government agencies to participate in the DFA,” His Excellency Al Gergawi added.

“He also encouraged the private sector to be involved in financing and experimenting future technologies that the 19 companies are providing that will make a positive difference to people’s lives.”

“The Future Accelerators was just an idea a few months ago. It has now become the focus of international attention as an effective platform to address global challenges, and a means by which governments can address practical aspects of cities of the future with the cooperation of the private sector and owners in the innovation space.”

HE Saif Al Aleeli, CEO of Dubai Future Foundation, said that compared to the global average, the first round of DFA achieved an unprecedented success rate of 64 percent, while the rate on average seldom exceeds 30 percent.

“The first round of the programme has already increased Dubai’s total spend on research and development by 6 percent in just three months,” His Excellency Al Aleeli added. “This in turn, boosts the emirate’s competitiveness and signals its transition to an innovation-led economy.”

Fourteen of the international companies taking part in the programme have decided to relocate their headquarters to Dubai, most notably, Hyperloop One, which shows the UAE’s newfound attractiveness among blue chip companies, which, until recently, opted to set up shop in established innovative environments such as Silicon Valley.

Starting from the second round of the Dubai Future Accelerators programme, private companies will be allowed to take part in the programme alongside government entities.

Source: Arabian Business