Forum aims to help UAE become the region’s entrepreneurial hub

Published April 11th, 2010 - 08:46 GMT

The first ‘Abu Dhabi Forum on Entrepreneurship’ presented by the Abu Dhabi University (ADU) and the Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development, has its sights set on helping to establish the UAE as the region’s entrepreneurial hub.


The two-day event at the Fairmont Bab Al Bahr (12-13th April 2010) will, among others, feature successful Emirati business ventures. It also aims to encourage a spirit of innovation among UAE’s growing small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and help develop opportunities while also fostering a better understanding of precisely  what is needed to establish an ‘innovative business’ the country.


“The UAE is already home to many young entrepreneurs whose innovative – and highly successful businesses - have captured global attention,” says James Graham, General Manager, Aim Events, the events management arm of Abu Dhabi University. “The knowledge of some of those leading players along with the experience of a host of other distinguished speakers will be imparted on an expected audience of more than two hundred from government organisations and private institutions in the UAE.”


His Excellency Dr Ahmed Khalil Al Mutawa, Executive Director of Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development will deliver the keynote address presenting an overview of the UAE’s Entrepreneurship sector.


Among the Emirati entrepreneurs speaking are twin brothers Ahmed and Rashid Bin Shabib, founders of Shelter, and Brownbook Magazine; Azza Al Qubaisi, one of the UAE’s first contemporary jewellers, founder and owner of Arjmst; and Mohammed Saeed Harib, owner and founder of Lamtarra Pictures and creator of ‘Freej’.


“The forum will also divulge the proven strategies rolled out by government agencies such as the Khalifa Fund and the Abu Dhabi Tawteen Council (ADTC), “ adds Graham, “while Tim Atterton, one of Australia’s leading facilitators of Entrepreneurship – and one of the distinguished panel of speakers - will also conduct a workshop assessing latent entrepreneurial skills and abilities. There will also be a highly anticipated panel discussion headed by Khalid Saiduddin, CEO, Elixir Business Research and Partner, Raynuma Consulting, an advisory business focused on public policy in the GCC, which will examine the initial idea of creating a company in times of global recession.”


Other prominent speakers at the forum organised by Aim Events, include  H.E. Mohammed Omar Abdullah, Undersecretary, Department of Economic Development; H.E. Mohammed Al Fahim, Honorary Chairman of Al Fahim Group; Dr. Sabah al-Binali, CIO and Principal of Saffar; Dr. Ali Hassan Alfageeh, Senior Consultant, Abu Dhabi Tawteen Council; Professor Poh Kam Wong, Professor at National University of Singapore (NUS)’s Business School and Director of Entrepreneurship; and Edward Roderick Hon LLD, Co-Chairman of Envestors MENA.


ADTC, one of the platinum sponsors along with Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB), will provide a presentation on its entrepreneurship initiatives in the country. The forum is also supported by Microsoft and Abraaj Capital, wherein the latter will share a case study on Riyada Enterprise Development, its investment platform dedicated to SMEs.


The Institute for Executive Development (IED), a member of Abu Dhabi University Knowledge Group (ADUKG) is the forum’s strategic partner.

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