Top officials during the launch of the incubator programme in Abu Dhabi on Friday.
As part of its efforts to enhance the innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem in the Emirate, the Competitiveness Office of Abu Dhabi (COAD), part of the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED), has officially launched the “Abu Dhabi innovation incubators programme” to support individuals wishing to turn their ideas into innovative commercial opportunities that, in turn, will support a diversified, robust, smart, and sustainable economy.
This incubator programme is part of the 14 initiatives under “Abu Dhabi Innovates”; Launched in May 2022, the framework was designed to enhance the innovation ecosystem in the Emirate. It provides visionaries and entrepreneurs access to space and equipment they require to develop their innovations and convert them to commercialisable services and products.
Innovation incubators are among the top identified drivers that encourage and incentivise individuals. They play a significant role in providing a stimulating environment to support and convert ideas or scientific inventions into commercial opportunities.
Sameh Al Qubaisi, Director General of Economic Affairs at ADDED, said “This programme is in line with ADDED’s commitment to support and develop prosperous projects and provide regulatory and institutional frameworks that support innovation and research and development (R&D) in vital economic sectors. This will be achieved by following a set of policies and regulations, developed by ADDED and partners, to ensure that innovation incubators are well-equipped and have the right operating model to support innovators at different stages. We believe this will help in enhancing the innovation ecosystem in Abu Dhabi and support the continuous development of business environment and strengthen Abu Dhabi’s status regionally and globally”.
Public and private institutions, which are investing in innovative technical solutions and supporting research and development (R&D), are eligible to earn innovation incubators license, following a thorough review by experts and according to best practices and policies in this field.
Leading academic and private institutions granted incubator’s license include Khalifa University, Al Ain University, Abu Dhabi University, Higher Collage of Technology, Khwarizmi International College, New York University- Abu Dhabi, Plug and Play, and Fat6lab.
In line with Abu Dhabi’s focus on knowledge-based, innovation-driven economic sectors, the innovation incubator programme will focus on developing innovations that support clusters with high growth potentials including Internet of Things (IoT), data centers and cloud services, e-commerce, smart manufacturing, clinical Research, asset management, commodity trading, tourism, FinTech, and AgriTech.
Ms Hala Al Ameri, Executive Director of the Competitiveness Office of Abu Dhabi (COAD), said, “Innovation incubators enhance innovators capabilities, and provide them with suitable environment to develop their ideas from initiation to delivery, and accelerate development of their innovations and projects”.
“The programme will also facilitate access to financing opportunities and business deals as well as encouraging entrepreneurs and investors to deal with trusted incubators, select innovations to invest in and support innovators to navigate their way through challenges to success,” Ms. Hala Al Ameri added.
The Competitiveness Office of Abu Dhabi (COAD) was established in 2011 to achieve the highest levels of competitiveness in the Emirate by creating a diverse and sustainable environment that stimulates innovation.
The Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED) recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with MADE Competence Centre I 4.0, part of the Industry 4.0 Italian ecosystem composed by the competence centres and the digital innovation hubs, to support sustainable growth and Industry 4.0 applications.
ADDED and MADE will collaborate to build awareness of opportunities linked to Industry 4.0 applications, provide access to best practices, enhance the innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem, and build the technical capabilities of the industrial workforce to be ready to the transformation through Industry 4.0 Skills Development Programme.
The cooperation with MADE, the leading centre in supporting businesses to manage innovation, technological transfer, applied research, and implementation of Industry 4.0 tools, reflects ADDED’s efforts to enhance the innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem and accelerate transformation of the manufacturing sector in Abu Dhabi.
The Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED) regulates the business sector in the Emirate and leads economic initiatives to achieve a knowledge-based, diversified, and sustainable economy.