In a major push towards making the emirate the entrepreneurial capital of the region, Dubai SME has allowed 100 per cent ownership to small- and medium-sized enterprises under its business incubator licence.
So all those innovative entrepreneurs and students who come up with a novel idea will have full ownership. However, their proposals will be scrutinised by the authorities to ensure that it is practical and executable.
This announcement was made as part of new regulations for "Incubators and Business Accelerators" for innovative entrepreneurs. Generally, the UAE laws allow 49 per cent ownership in companies but free zones allow 100 per cent ownership.
Dubai SME, the agency of the Department of Economic Development in Dubai, said entrepreneurs can apply for incubator licence online and every application will undergo a feasibility check by a special committee.
"The new regulations provide a legal form for incubators for the sake of universities, colleges and venture capitalists as well as entrepreneurs who have unique ideas and initiatives," said Abdul Baset Al Janahi, CEO, Dubai SME.
He said the initiative would attract local and foreign investment in SMEs and international expertise in business incubation and enhancing business competitiveness.
The business incubators will be able to provide a range of services including required workspace for entrepreneurs, consultancy and guidance on project development, and support for implementing innovations and applying the latest technology in product development.
A number of initiatives have been taken locally to encourage entrepreneurship and startups in the UAE, especially Dubai.
Dubai Startup Hub by Dubai Chamber and Hamdan Innovator and Incubator by Mohammad bin Rashid establishment have been set up to empower the emirate as the entrepreneurial capital of the region.
Dubai aims to bolster SME contribution to GDP from 40 per cent in 2017 to 45 per cent by 2021.