Smart services, retail among top sectors for young Emirati entrepreneurs

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Staff Report

Dubai – Tejar Dubai, an initiative of the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, has revealed that a total of 28 commercial projects have been launched to-date by its participants with a majority of Emirati-owned businesses operating within the UAE’s smart services, retail, logistics, and food and beverage sectors.
A total of Dh15.4 million worth of financing has been provided to Tejar Dubai participants since the entrepreneurship development programme was established in 2013. This financial support was secured through agreements and partnerships between Tejar Dubai and local banks.
A total of 260 business ideas have been submitted to the programme since its launch, of which 23% were adopted. Female participants accounted for 63% of the business ideas submitted, compared to 37% from their male counterparts, demonstrating the important role that Emirati women are playing in the UAE’s business community.
More than 100 workshops and training sessions have been organised by Tejar Dubai over the last four years, benefitting 1,750 young Emirati entrepreneurs. The events covered a wide variety of relevant topics, including financial planning, innovation strategy, legal aspects of business setup in the UAE, and risk management, among other key issues that impact new business owners.
During the first six months of 2017, three new businesses were launched under Tejar Dubai, and an additional another six commercial projects are expected to be launched before the end of this year. A total of 42 business ideas were submitted by aspiring Emirati entrepreneurs between January and June 2017, of which 11 were approved, while 12 workshops were held and attended by 465 participants over the same period.

Hamad Buamim, President and CEO, Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, highlighted the importance that the Chamber places on nurturing the local entrepreneurial ecosystem, and noted that the success of young entrepreneurs is critical to the UAE’s economic development.
Buamim emphasised the Chamber’s commitment to supporting this sector through its wide range of initiatives, such as the Dubai Smartpreneur Competition and Dubai Startup Hub, which have provided an important platform for aspiring entrepreneurs across the UAE to gain exposure and support, and develop innovative business ideas.
A number of new initiatives are currently in the pipeline that will provide additional support to entrepreneurs in Dubai, he revealed, adding that the plans fall in line with the Chamber’s 2017-2021 strategy, and contribute to the emirate’s sustainable economic growth.
Essa Al Zaabi, Senior Vice-President, Institutional Support Sector, Dubai Chamber, and General Coordinator of Tejar Dubai, explained that the Tejar Dubai programme has provided nascent Emirati entrepreneurs with valuable knowledge and tools, as well as opportunities for them to develop their skills and benefit from mentorship and expertise.
This broad level of support has helped turn many business ideas into a reality, Al Zaabi noted, adding that the success of many of the launched projects has encouraged other aspiring Emirati entrepreneurs to submit their ideas and join the programme.
Tejar Dubai is a specialised entrepreneurial development programme that provides young Emirati entrepreneurs with access to an extensive development programme, including classroom learning, on-site training, mentoring and business advice, as well as networking opportunities with local and international business leaders, and access to investment capital. – abdulbasit@theuaenews.com