Dubai Launches Intelak Hub to Support the Global Aviation and Tourism Sectors

Press release
Published July 28th, 2020 - 07:02 GMT
Dubai Launches Intelak Hub to Support the Global Aviation and Tourism Sectors
Intelak Hub has a consortium of global leaders that serve as its principal partners.
The unique start-up hub will be led by principal partners: Emirates Group, Dubai Tourism, Accenture and Microsoft

Dubai is set to further accelerate entrepreneurial growth across the global aviation and tourism industry with the launch of Intelak Hub. Former programmes Intelak Incubator, Idea Lab and the Futurism Accelerator have been brought together under one brand to support ideation and early and late stage start-ups with the foundational structure, coaching, tools and resources needed to address the often complex business challenges present in these industries.

Intelak Hub has a consortium of global leaders that serve as its principal partners. Emirates Group with its established track record as world-class providers of air transport (Emirates) and air travel services (dnata); Dubai Tourism with its extensive knowledge and reputation in destination marketing; Accenture with its deep expertise shaping and connecting disruptive ecosystem start-ups to its clients, and Microsoft with its global scale and deep technology expertise in nurturing start-ups, will all provide mentorship to programme participants. Intelak Hub creates the city’s only start-up platform dedicated to identifying innovative solutions across the aviation and tourism industries.


Intelak Hub’s programmes consist of: Intelak Idea Lab, a three week programme nurturing young Emirati talent as part of the UAE’s vision to develop and support home-grown innovation and entrepreneurship; Intelak Incubator, a 12 week programme for early stage start-ups offering equity-free funding, market feasibility guidance, pitch deck advisement, and demo day showcases where Dubai is used as a proof-of -concept for their solutions; Intelak Accelerator, an eight week programme for late stage start-ups looking to scale their businesses, offering comprehensive go-to-market counsel, access to partner ecosystems to test and implement their solutions, exhibition space and exclusive pitching and investor opportunities at GITEX Future Stars – a premier technology event for the region.


Commenting on the launch, Yousuf Lootah, Executive Director - Tourism Development & InvestmentsDubai Tourism, said: “In line with the vision to position Dubai as a preferred destination for global talents and entrepreneurs, we are excited to be taking a leadership role in promoting innovation at a time where the industry is facing more challenges than ever before. Launching Intelak Hub is one of the many ways Dubai Tourism is strategically investing in and committed to reinvigorating entrepreneurship in the global aviation and tourism sectors.“

Alex Alexander, CTO Emirates Group, said: “The launch of Intelak Hub marks an exciting next stage in Dubai’s premier programme for aviation and travel entrepreneurs. Dubai’s success today as a global aviation and travel hub has been driven by the vision of its leaders, who have actively encouraged industry innovation and partnerships. The Emirates Group is proud to continue our journey with Intelak, and to see this program flourish since it began in 2016. Moving forward, we believe the Intelak Hub can play a key role in building the innovation pipeline for our industry, and further establishing Dubai the global hub for travel and aviation.”


Norberto Cibien, Products industry lead for Accenture in the Middle East, said: “We are proud to join this important initiative to create transformative travel and tourism experiences and enhance Dubai’s position as one of the leading hubs for business. Together with our partners, we have the opportunity to nurture new talent and develop breakthrough innovations.”


“Dubai aspires to be a favourite destination for tech entrepreneurs to bring their ideas to reality and make it a global business,” said Sayed Hashish, General Manager, Microsoft UAE. “Intelak Hub is envisioned to become a powerhouse to unleash the potential of budding start-ups and catalyse their success to tackle challenges and propel growth. We look forward to working alongside our partners and mentoring these home-grown innovators focusing on travel, tourism and aviation to push the envelope and bring their ideas to life, by harnessing some of the best-in-class technologies. The post-COVID world represents an opportunity for new innovation that helps the industry accelerate growth and job creation. Start-ups have become an undisputable innovation engine, and together with our forces combined – we will empower them to achieve more."


Over the past four years, previously independent programmes – Intelak Incubator, Idea Lab and the Futurism Accelerator have invested AED 1.4 million in equity-free funding to start-ups. Now united under Intelak Hub, these programmes will continue to invest in the start-up community, offering cohorts under the new brand. All cohort programmes will have a hybrid structure consisting of physical and digital components. Start-ups do not need to be based in Dubai to take part in the Incubator or Accelerator programmes. Applications for the 2020 programmes will be accepted during their open application windows; Intelak Incubator; 14, July – 4, October, Intelak Accelerator; 26, July – 6, September, Intelak Idea Lab; 1, October – 10, November.


For more information on Intelak Hub and Intelak Hub programme application requirements visit:

Background Information

Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism (DET)

With the ultimate vision of making Dubai the world’s leading commercial centre, investment hub and tourism destination, Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism (DET) is mandated to support the Government in positioning the emirate as a major hub for global economy and tourism, and in boosting the city’s economic and tourism competitiveness indicators. Under this remit, DET is driving efforts to further enhance Dubai’s diversified, innovative service-based economy to attract top global talent, deliver a world-class business environment and accelerate productivity growth. Additionally, DET is supporting Dubai’s vision to become the world’s best city to live and work in by promoting its diverse destination proposition, unique lifestyle and outstanding quality of life, overall.

DET is the principal authority for the planning, supervision, development and marketing of Dubai’s business and tourism sectors. It is also responsible for the licensing and classification of all types of businesses, including hotels, tour operators and travel agents. The DET portfolio includes Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing, Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment, Dubai Industries and Exports, Dubai Investment Development Agency (Dubai FDI) and Dubai SME, as well as Dubai College of Tourism, Dubai Calendar and Dubai Business Events.

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